Unfolding. Seeing. Knowing. Hearing. Seeking. Seeking our story. Seeking the truth. Seeking connection to our very soul. Where does it start? How do we begin? I see Mt. Rainier outside my window and wonder, where did it begin? What is the depth of that great mountain? How high is the peak of its summit? Is it like my soul? Growing and expanding. Some days hiding behind the clouds. Other days white and beautiful for all to see?
In recent days I have been consistently drawn to the topic of knowing. Knowing God. Knowing ourselves. Knowing others. My first recent awareness of this came as I was reading an advent meditation entry by the father of a deaf child. He was quite concerned that his daughter would never “hear” the Christmas story, the story of Incarnation, in a language she could “understand.” Therefore, she could “never embrace the Light of the World.” While I think I understand his compassion and desire for his daughter and other deaf children, I somehow felt this statement to be so wrong. In my heart, I believe these children may hear and know God more deeply than this father who thinks that only man’s spoken words can adequately convey the gospel.
Since that reading, I have been ever aware of the many ways that God speaks to me and provides a deeper knowing than any spoken words can convey. “The Divine Voice is not always expressed in words. It is made known as a heart-consciousness.” (from God Calling). It is this “heart-consciousness” that seems to speak most loudly to me.
My ponderings did not end, however, with only the spoken word. I also have much considered the seen word. I am aware of how visually stimulated I am by God’s creation all around and how it is often in the seeing that I experience the knowing of which I write. Thus enters my new favorite saint, St. Lucy—the patron saint of blindness. Lucy means “light,” coming from the same Latin root as “lucid” which translates as “clear, radiant, understandable.” St. Lucy’s martyred life ended with her eyes being gouged out. Miraculously, however, she was still able to see even without her eyes.
While the stories say this was miraculous, I wonder, do we not all have this “miraculous” ability—to see without eyes, to hear without ears, to feel without touch? Is this not the handiwork of a miraculous God—the one who provides multiple pathways to unfolding, seeing, knowing, hearing and seeking truth?
I am certain this is a topic I will return to again and again. For now, however, I will end with a poem from The Prophet by Khalil Gibran.
And a man said, Speak to us of Self-Knowledge.
And he answered saying:
Your hearts know in silence the secrets of the days and the nights.
But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart’s knowledge.
You would know in words that which you have always known in thought.
You would touch with your fingers the naked body of your dreams.
And it is well you should.
The hidden well-spring of your soul must needs rise and run murmuring to the sea;
And the treasure of your infinite depths would be revealed to your eyes.
But let there be no scales to weigh your unknown treasure;
And seek not the depths of your knowledge with staff or sounding line.
For self is a sea boundless and measureless.
Say not, “I have found the truth,” but rather, “I have found a truth.”
Say not, “I have found the path of the soul.” Say rather, “I have met the soul walking upon my path.”
For the soul walks upon all paths.
The soul walks not upon a line, neither does it grow like a reed.
The soul unfolds itself, like a lotus of countless petals.
"its makers praise" photo by bill hughlett