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Still More on Holidays and Holiness

December 28, 2018

China Isler surfaced what David Whyte wrote; I am thrilled to share these highlights with you here today —

Holiness is the center that holds all peripheries; the pure internal absence that makes sense of everyone who comes to visit; the hidden ground beneath feet always running to look for gifts, the held note of a song that leaves a chapel silent or the stopped listener still and attentive in the busiest, most glittering street. Holiness is the deep internal, cathedral space where nothing is allowed to happen, thus allowing all other things to happen, a gravitational field of invitation and gathering and a radical letting alone, of family, of food, of perspectives, what is wanted is reached through letting go, by giving up on willed perfection.

Holiness is the rehabilitation of the discarded; the uncelebrated and the imperfect, into new unities, perceived again as gift. Holiness is the bringing of the detailed outside into the vast unspoken and horizon-less inside, from where the inside seems to give again, re-simplifying the periphery, our everyday life transformed as if by simply breathing, breathing in and breathing out, back to the world.

Holiness is memory independent of time, not time as besieging force in which we run around getting things done but time radiating out from the place where we stand, welling from the unspoken that holds together all words said at the busy surface; holiness marries hurry to rest, stress to spaciousness, and joy to heartbreak in our difficult attempt to give and receive, dissolving giver and receiver into one conversation, untouched by the hurry of the hours.

— As an admitted time-management-oholic rying to get more done in less time and squeezing one or three extra things into whatever time I’m allowed, this concept of Holiness being untouched by the hurry of the hours is almost offensive.

Which is, I’m learning, precisely the point.

Not unlike Psalm 46:10Be still and know that I am God.

And you and I are not.

Today is a good day to start listening for the unspoken that holds together all words said at the busy surface.





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