oh how hard is the outer shell?


I think the story is about that still center: “the silent house, the birdsong wilderness.” That is the image we retain. The unmoving smoke above the chimney top. The spindle fallen from the motionless hand. The cat asleep near the sleeping mouse. No noise, no bustle, no busyness. Utter peace. Nothing moving but the slow subtle growth of the thorn bushes, ever thicker and higher all about the boundary, and the birds who fly over the high hedge, singing, and pass on. It is the secret garden; it is Eden; it is the dream of utter, sunlit safety; it is the changeless kingdom.

~Ursula K. Le Guin

how is that we miss the obvious tensions as the veil to see us through?

inquiry for today~    listen. soften. repeat.

never enough

The 20th century monk and poet Thomas Merton drew from the Sufis to describe the point vierge- the “virgin point” of the soul- the part of ourselves deep within the heart that is untouched by our daily fears and anxieties, the place in which God dwells. This inner witness is our calm core, the place within us of infinite compassion and curiosity about our experience. When we move into silence and we begin to notice the inner voices rising up, it is our inner witness that can observe this dialogue without getting caught up in the emotional drama of it. Cultivating an awareness of this dimension takes practice. We enter into contemplative ways of praying t access this brilliance within us, to rest into our own hearts and discover there the heart of God.

~Christine Valters Paintner

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