It is truly the Beloved who visits you.
Yes, but he comes invisible, hidden and incomprehensible.
He comes to touch you, not to be seen.
He makes you taste of him, not to pour himself out in you entirely.
He comes to draw your affection, not to satisfy your desire.
To bestow the first fruit of his love, not to communicate it in its fullness.
Behold in this the most certain pledge of your future marriage,
that you are destined to see him and possess him entirely,
because he already gives himself to you to taste with what sweetness you know.
Therefore in times of his absence you shall console yourself,
and during his visit you shall renew your courage.”
– Hugh of St. Victor, 11th century
“A person whose soul has awakened becomes awake to everything he sees and hears. … It is this awakening of the soul which is mentioned in the Bible, ‘Unless the soul is born again it will not enter the kingdom of heaven’. Being born again means that the soul is awakened after having come on earth, and entering the kingdom of heaven means that this world, the same kingdom in which we are standing just now, turns into heaven as soon as the point of view has changed. Is it not interesting and most wonderful to think that the same earth we walk on is earth to one person and heaven to another? And it is still more interesting to notice that it is we who change it; we change it from earth into heaven, or we change it otherwise. This change comes not by study, nor by anything else, but only by the changing of our point of view.”
– Hazrat Inayat Khan (1882-1927)
I’d been thinking about posting this poem today, for a few folks I can think of whose hearts feel like they might do well to be reminded that they are just as perfect as they need to be. And then, I happened upon it tonight, written in a neighbor’s driveway.
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting —
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
~ Mary Oliver ~
“It does not behoove you, O creature like God, to cross the seas, to penetrate the clouds or climb the Alps in search of God. No great journey is necessary for you. Seek no further than your own soul, there you will find your God.”
– St. Bernard of Clairvaux
“Humility is my table, respect is my garment, empathy is my food and curiosity is my drink. As for love, it has a thousand names and is by my side at every window”
– Tariq Ramadan (via ashrada)
“God is a circle whose center is everywhere and circumference nowhere.”
~Voltaire citing Timaeus of Locris
photo by Dominic Alves (Taken with Instagram)
“O wondrous creatures, by what strange miracle do you so often not smile?”
– Hafiz (as translated by Daniel Ladinsky)