Love

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Radiance

How do we find our own light? We stop. It isn’t until we really stop everything—let go of the busy-ness that buffers us from pain, stop trying, stop working so hard, stop running . . . The more we dare to enter that emptiness and stay, the more our shadow is revealed—the holy telling of the hard truth about ourselves. About reality. Rilke shows us how to live that larger life:

Take your practiced powers and stretch them out
until they span the chasm between two
contradictions . . . For the god
wants to know himself in you.

If we accept his invitation to live the paradox and not just think it, we can no longer take refuge in a single point of view; we’re meant to open our hearts to all the contradictions—the good and the bad—in ourselves, in everyone. The great gift of this shadow walk lies in the very emptiness we’ve sought, and also hoped to avoid: a quality of compassion that brings together the many opposites—the loneliness, the grief, the shame and the beauty—and holds them. Compassion then becomes a companion to the mind of thought. It’s like a marriage: We marry our human selves— for better or worse—until death do us part; we companion ourselves, keep our youngest selves in our hearts, held and comforted. Only then, can we truly marry another . . . marry all that life is . . . all that it brings . . . This is the kind of love we’re called to embody: to be with ourselves so that we can offer genuine compassion to others; so the light within the dark is made manifest; so the Radiance deep in the heart of life continues to spread throughout the world.*

 

*See more in “Taking Root: An Unbroken Intimacy with Life” in the Fall Kosmos Journal

2013 Three Upcoming Retreats:

Toronto area, April 19-21 An Unbroken Intimacy with Life, A Weekend Retreat
 
Madison WI, 3 or 5-day options: April 23-25 Taking Root ~ A Depth of Intimacy with Life or with additional days, April 25-27, Depth Perception ~ The Sensation of Light
 

Artist, Marci Graham,“Radiance” from The Cosmological Powers of the Universe Series

Filed under Alignment, attention, awareness, compassion, Consciousness, Creativity by Anne Hillman #

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SUMMER 2012 – ONE WITH EXISTENCE

Love is not a feeling. It is an energy that unites. Love joins us to existence by that which is deepest in us. This is the intimate relationship that matters.

At this instant, a baby bird flies onto my windowsill, his silver down blowing in the wind like a gossamer shawl. Perched there, alert and posturing like he owns the place, he stares me straight in the eye, turning his head left and right in abrupt bursts of energy. I stop to watch the tiny creature, then, realize what I’d just written, and shift gears. The bird’s appearance is an example of what I’ve come to call ‘punctuation,’ a cue to reorient myself to Presence, to Unity, to the One—whatever you call the mysterious field in which we’re deeply rooted.

Punctuation is how Unity shows itself to us, comes sailing into our everyday world and surprises us. It intersects our ordinary perspective and puts an exclamation point at the precise moment an important theme has emerged: in writing, in conversation, or in a fleeting thought. Slightly different from synchronicity which may occur at longer intervals, punctuation is instantaneous—a lived experience of being One with life.

We sail into the arms of Unity when we turn away from the digital connections that anesthetize us and find ourselves enlivened by our vibrant connection to the earth and its inhabitants, and to the larger life—to Love. Or when we make meaning of such a moment that points to patterns transcending our own concerns, yet may be vital to the collective. Noting punctuation isn’t ‘primitive thinking.’ It is awe, and combined with thought lends wisdom, depth of meaning, and multiple views of reality that honor a much larger Self.*

*These themes are further developed in the forthcoming fall issue of Kosmos Journal

Filed under Love, Uncategorized by Anne Hillman #

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I have always been grateful for the work of artists and as some of you know, relied entirely on art and photography to express the first intimations of what eventually became the book, Awakening the Energies of Love.If you haven’t yet learned about the free link to that presentation, The Evolution of Stress, please see the sidebar. When I look at that sequence of paintings now, I’m still astonished at how visionary those artists were! It was as if they’d painted the conflict, the confusion, and the feelings we are experiencing in our time, as well as the beauty of their potential resolution.

Last month, another painter, Mary Southard, created a glimpse of that potential in her graceful poster of ‘The Song of Love’ from Awakening the Energies of Love. It can be seen on the  Ministry of the Arts website and would make a lovely gift for yourself, or for a friend, a grandchild, or someone’s graduation. Though their catalog shows the framed version here, it is also available for $10, unframed. MOTA produced the poster and will receive all the income.

Awakening The Energies Of Love Poster

Brian Swimme calls this creative process ‘Fire igniting fire igniting fire!’ So let’s ignite some creativity together! I was amazed at the breadth of responses that The Dancing Animal Woman inspired, among them, stained glass windows, CD’s for a cancer support program, videos at a celebration with indigenous peoples, calendars, and more. There’s now a page on my website for your own creative work. If something from Awakening the Energies of Love has inspired you, I’d be honored to display it with a link to your url.  Please send your creative work here. In the meantime, here are the words on Mary’s poster of ‘The Song of Love’.

The Song of Love

You are loved. You are accepted, held in a vast embrace. There is nothing in you, nothing of character or tendencies, race or sexuality, accomplishment or failure that is not held, not needed. You are a child of God. That which you are is deeply wanted.

You are not alone, not left to your own devices. There is more going on than can be seen. You belong to an activity that is beyond comprehension. Trust it.

You are known. That which you have sought is seeking you. That which you want to offer life is greatly needed. You may not yet know what it is, but it is exactly the right gift and only yours to give. Give it.

You are part of a great leap of loving such as the world has never known. You have work to do. Begin it. There is only one ancient and forever work of art: the slow fashioning of life and the gradual flowering of Love. Find your way. Find your companions. Give your life to Love.

The world sings in its many voices,’Do you love me?’ It stumbles across your path a hundred times a day. Respond.

Be bread. Be broken. Let go of what you know. Find in your heart what your mind can’t comprehend. Moment by moment . . . place by place . . . person by person . . . wound by wound. Dance! Fall! Fail! You will be busy, but not with the busy- ness of the world.

In the heart of you lies Love. Without your opposition, it shines through you. You have only to let yourself be held in the larger embrace, let yourself be loved, let yourself be known as you are—and you will be lit up.

Thomas Merton said, ‘There’s no way of telling people they’re walking around shining like the sun.’

You are a shining. You are not only the small being who wants to be safe.

You are Love. You are Life. You are Light.

Go Shining.

Filed under Creativity, Love by Anne Hillman #