Friday, May 21, 2010

A Mystic in Love with the Beauty of the World

I have been dazzled the last two days by the beauty that surrounds me, the flowers in my neighbors garden, the hypnotic reflection of sunlight dancing on the lake, the green, green grass on an open field with rolling hills that I drive by every day on my way to work. In an article
that I read this morning (I could not identify who the author was) the following is quoted from Matthew Fox:

"people are born mystics—we are all mystics as children, but it’s taken away from us as we grow older. It’s taken away subtly by education which trains the left brain and ignores the right brain. They take away your crayons right when you need them most — at puberty. When you should be getting to your cosmic soul they give you football and shopping-malls. And that’s what religion won’t tell you — that we’re losing the planet. We have everything to lose, it’s basic. And that’s why the only resolution is an awakening of gratitude and reverence for the planet, and falling in love in more than an anthropocentric fashion.”

Every day I need to remember to fall once again in love with all the beauty in the world and I invite you to do so too, this might just be our best hope for saving it and ourselves...

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Hidden Spirituality of Men

The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine

Matthew Fox's book, The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine" is Fox's attempt to assist men in opening their minds to a deeper understanding of the healthy masculine and to inspire them to "pursue their higher calling to reinvent the world."

I thought I'd offer a few quotes from this book as food for thought.

"In America boys commit 86% of all adolescent suicides."

"Global warming is also a global warning: a warning that we are not doing well as a species and as a planet. One out of four mammal species is dying out, and where are our leaders? Where are the elders? Where are the men?"

"...boys get shamed for their vulnerability at a very young age, right around Kindergarten, and that's the time at which they really learn to hold off from expressing their feelings and experience." (Mark Micolson)

"Many men are abused at work, some in their bodies, others in their souls."

"There's a difference between being a soldier and being a warrior..." If the warrior is distinct from the soldier, then there must be distinct ways by which the warrior develops his or her strength. If the warrior is the mystic in action, then let us try the following four steps on for size...

The Via Positiva is the way of celebrating life... This is the way of reverence, respect, and gratitude...

This way goes into the darkness, the wounds, the pain, and also the silence and solitude of existence to find what we have to learn there. It is a way of letting go and letting be, of emptying and being emptied, of moving beyond judgment and beyond control, of sinking and learning to breathe, to sit, to be still... It is the way of grieving. Without grief we cannot move on to the next stage, which is one of giving birth....

Having fallen in love with life often (via positiva) and having been emptied and learned to let go and let be numerous times (via negativa) the spiritual warrior is ready to give birth. Creativity is the weapon... of the true spiritual warrior... every warrior is an artist...

...Does the work I am doing pass the justice test? Does it benefit the poor and not just the powerful? Does it fill gaps between haves and have-nots or make the chasm deeper? Does it contribute to healing and empowerment of the powerless or does it merely reestablish the privileges of the few and the expense of the many?..."