I’VE WRITTEN MANY TIMES referencing the teachings of Fr. Richard Rohr, a Franciscan Priest and a globally recognized ecumenical teacher who “bears witness to the universal awakening within Christian mysticism and the Perennial Tradition. ” (If you are not familiar, do click the link and read the very short description. I am no expert, but my heart glows when I read it.) The night we returned from our trip to Maine I flipped open my laptop to see the load of email I had not sifted while on vacation. There was this Rohr meditation, delivered that very day.
The Perennial Tradition constantly recognizes that we are part of something more than we are observing something.
How does that feel to you? Rohr continues.
It feels like Maine, is what I thought. It feels like a walk through the woods on Big Cranberry Island; a quiet Acadia moment, the breeze in your hair. It feels like every view of Jordan Pond. It feels like sunset from the top of Cadillac Mountain, and the lobster boats and the rocky coast and the lighthouses and the deep dense fog.
It feels like sea glass.
Because you don’t observe Maine, is what I had already realized. You become part of it.
You are absorbed by it.
Rohr goes on.
The foundational spiritual question is this: Does one’s life give any evidence of an encounter with God? When we’ve experienced union and intimacy with the divine, what is our response? Does the encounter bring about what Paul described as the “fruits” of the Spirit: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustfulness, gentleness, and self-control” ?
There are important questions–particularly in a dualistic culture–about becoming what you are surrounded by. Those we will debate another day.
But for now, I am content to soak in my memories of Maine, to (best as I can) hold on to the part of my soul that was moved and soothed and enriched by that beautiful, welcoming, earthly place.
To remember that every glorious moment of grace is born of open, full and humble connection to all that is divine.