Do more than belong: participate.
Do more than care: help.
Do more than believe: practice.
Do more than be fair: be kind.
Do more than forgive: forget.
Do more than dream: work.
William Arthur Ward
I was quite taken with this list when a friend showed it to me yesterday. The statement about believing and practicing is singularly powerful for me. Does one stand out for you?
Beauty does not always cloak itself in grandeur; it can be even more striking when glimpsed through the veil of the everyday. Life’s incandescence glimmers in every ordinary moment if we’d but see it.
This short film was taken on morning walks over two weeks in June and July, 2014 in the beautiful west of Ireland, near the village of Shrule on the border of Galway and Mayo. The Irish might not agree, but the misty and cloudy days seen here were to me possibly even more beautiful than the cloudless skies we saw day after day this summer. No accounting for taste I suppose. Grace and peace to you.
“The first step to the knowledge of the highest divine symbol of the wonder and mystery of life is in the recognition of the monstrous nature of life and its glory in that character: the realization that this is just how it is and that it cannot and will not be changed. Continue reading “On Life As It Is”
BOOK REVIEW: Why I Am an Atheist Who Believes In God: How To Give Love, Create Beauty and Find Peace. Frank Schaeffer, 2014
I completely understand the puzzlement that comes over people when I declare myself a believer and an atheist. It’s not something that comes up all the time of course but occasionally there’s no avoiding it and you just have to come clean. Once it went like this: “I was a Christian, then I became an atheist.” It was sad for some people to hear. But at least it was neat and they knew where I stood. Now it’s: “I still don’t believe in the God the atheists don’t believe in, but I pray every day.” And that’s just messy. Explain it and it gets messier.
People aren’t good with messy. While I’m obscenely comfortable in this paradoxical pigeon-hole I’ve carved out for myself, I’ve had to resign myself to the fact that on questions like this people prefer ‘either-or’ to ‘both-and’, and so it’s felt like something of a solitary little niche. That said, you can imagine my delight when I stumbled on the totally messy title of Frank Schaeffer’s latest book, Why I Am an Atheist Who Believes in God. Continue reading “Embracing paradox and living to tell the tale”
The Buddhist vision of transcendence is the cessation of suffering, which is not an end to the life circumstances that may trouble us but a deep, transcendent acceptance of life as it is. This video is an exquisite blending of spoken word, chanting and images from the films Earth and Baraka.
‘May the sound of this bell penetrate deep into the cosmos. Even in the darkest spots living beings are able to hear it clearly, so that all suffering in them cease, understanding comes to their hearts, and they transcend the path of sorrow and death.’
The Great Bell Chant: Chanted by brother Phap Niem. Translation read by Thich Nhat Hahn.
Jesus smiled at me today, his radiant, beaming, toothless ‘thank you’, life’s extravagant gift. To me. Gracious unearned gift.
YESTERDAY I passed him by. Twice, that I recall. First outside Gloria Jean’s. It all happened in a blink. Continue reading “Jesus smiled at me today”
I can imagine then,
some time other than this;
I can think of there,
some place other than this;
I can be only now and here,
for life is now, here.
Life is this moment.
Christopher Malcolm Knauf 2013