The face of the child can be retained at any age when we experience childlike wonder, awe, and curiosity. The task at the White Picket Gate is to uncover or awaken to the essence of who we truly are beyond masks, roles, work, history, and associations. This essence holds the natural wisdom and radiance of our authentic being, reminding us that we are spiritual beings having a human experience, rather than human beings trying to have a spiritual experience. Here we destroy the illusory peace provided by all our roles, uncovering our true face in order to integrate and embody the true child-youth-adult-elder-essence of our nature. The face of essence is the timeless, radiant face of our being’s presence and essential spiritual nature……Angeles Arrien
our impoverished sense of beauty has diminished this soul light of wisdom in an enormously important and powerful time in our lives……the most poignant beauty is inhabiting the present moment, gathering the fragments of our broken places….
Sometimes in very old bodies there are incredibly young, wild souls looking out at you. It is so invigorating to meet a wild old person who has remained faithful to their wild life force. There is a place in the soul that is eternal. It is a lovely thing to know this about yourself. If you begin to feel the warmth of your soul, there will be a youthfulness in you that no one will ever be able to take away from you. Old age offers the opportunity to integrate and bring together the multiplicity of directions that you have traveled. It is a time when you can bring the circle of your life together to where your longing can be awakened and new possibilities can come alive for you……John O’Donahue
‘growing old gracefully’ comes from a sacred place of purpose, of expanding our existence beyond ourselves….grace allows us to give up control, to honor what is….we open to receiving our stories as they are….whether brutal, brittle or brilliant, we show up for their illuminations…..grace is a gift from God…..
When a man is not playing any of his usual roles, when he cannot find a suitable role in his repertoire, he feels that he is undressed. He is cold and ashamed and wants to run away from everybody. but the question arises: What does he want? A quiet life or to work on himself? If he wants a quiet life, he must certainly first of all never move out of his repertoire. In his usual roles he feels comfortable and at peace. But if he wants to work on himself, he must destroy his peace. To have them both together is in no way possible……Gurdjiieff