Tag Archives: Rumi

Losing a Loved One

losing

It is incredibly painful to lose someone we love–there are so many ways we cope, deny, and suffer.  I’d like to say not to worry, all will be well, and it will, but the journey through loss is difficult and unpredictable.  In my unpublished biography , the teenager, Yasunari Kawabata has no-one left, and is watching his grandfather dying. It is excruciating. His granddad wants the best for him, and yet he denies him too. What is that about?

Scroll down to discover what Monk says.

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Excerpt from Samurai to Sushi, biography of Yasunari Kawabata (Japanese literary genius)

Soon, the old man completely lost his short-term memory.  Yasunari wanted to run away, but he did not.  He pitied Grandfather’s constant talk about things from the past.  Some seemed nonsensical to Yasunari, like the secret bank-seal that Grandfather insisted Yasunari use for banking.  In Japan, a bank-seal along with a signature was needed to get money out of an account.  They had no money.  Perhaps, Yasunari thought sadly, Grandfather says this nonsense because he wants me to have good finances.  He did not argue with Grandfather, even though there was no such a seal and never had been one.

Grandfather talked constantly about wealth, making Omiyo laugh.  She did not take the old man seriously.  “You have a grandson.  Now that is real wealth.  This boy is your hope.”

“How will you manage, Yasunari,” Grandfather fretted one day.  “I will buy you some land.”  After a few moments, he said, “It is not right for you to go to live with relatives.”  Then a few moments later he got more cheerful.  “You must go and talk to the Temple monks.  They will help you.”

Yasunari groaned.  “They will call us the madmen of our village,” he said.  There was no way he was going to go to monks for help.  Yet, he wanted to do something.  He needed to do something.  Not just for himself.  He wanted to honor Grandfather, and so he accurately recorded his Grandfather’s last words.

“Namu Amida, Namu Amida,” Grandfather chanted.

Blood drained from Yasunari’s face.

“Namu Amida, Namu Amida,” Grandfather continued with the words used at the time of death.

Yasunari knew that by saying these words, Grandfather wanted to be welcomed by Amitābha into heaven.

“Don’t worry,” Omiyo said.  “He’s just worried because I didn’t get in touch with the monk for him.  I lied to him and told him the monk wasn’t there.”

“He deserved to know the truth!” Yasunari scolded her for deceiving Grandfather.

Grandfather turned his back on Yasunari.  That night Grandfather called out for Omiyo.  He did not call for Yasunari.

***

Monk asks, what really matters?  “I lost the love of my life.  She was so beautiful. I wanted nothing more than to make her happy.  It was not to be. I had no choice but to let her go. Looking back now that I am an old man, I see that I could have made many other choices, but I do not regret becoming a follower of Amida Buddha, eventually taking the vows and becoming a monastic.”

Monk continues, “never give up hope, and know you are more than your body. You will be re-united in the Pure Land with all those who went on before you.  Bow to the holy.  Pray and meditate to center your mind, no matter your religious tradition, and you will understand more and more…Be still…”

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Buddha Amitabha Song:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtOlT-VvmsI&list=PL4B0F290CEFA4FDC8

Jesus Prayer – Иисусова молитва: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHP4Z84a_WY

Sufi Music with quotes from Rumi:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CoY6ChsMxnA

 

Radiance–Contemplation for Verde: March, 2014

radiance

    from A Hole in the Sky: As people who like to fill our minds with facts and our lives with things, we may find it difficult to cultivate emptiness, which is both an intellectual and an emotional openness. But spiritual emptiness is not literal nothingness. It’s an attitude of nonattachment in which we resist the temptation to cling to our points of view. This kind of emptiness, confident but never certain, gives us the room to be flexible and self-aware. The religions are filled with symbols for it even if they don’t always put it into practice.

Thomas Moore. The Soul’s Religion. Harper Collins: 2003. p.5.

Scripture for Contemplation

Ask, Seek, Knock

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! 12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

Lectio Divina:

  • Read the scripture slowly three times.
  • Select a word, a phrase or an image.
  • Ask God for insight.
  • Sit silently focusing on your word, phrase or image: 10-20 minutes.
  • Journal your experience.

***

Closing meditation with music: 

Rumi–Where All is Music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJXcrM3B4zI

***

I Was Dead

i was dead
i came alive
i was tears
i became laughter

all because of love
when it arrived
my temporal life
from then on
changed to eternal

love said to me
you are not
crazy enough
you don’t
fit this house

i went and
became crazy
crazy enough
to be in chains

love said
you are not
intoxicated enough
you don’t
fit the group

i went and
got drunk
drunk enough
to overflow
with light-headedness

love said
you are still
too clever
filled with
imagination and skepticism

i went and
became gullible
and in fright
pulled away
from it all

love said
you are a candle
attracting everyone
gathering every one
around you

i am no more
a candle spreading light
i gather no more crowds
and like smoke
i am all scattered now

love said
you are a teacher
you are a head
and for everyone
you are a leader

i am no more
not a teacher
not a leader
just a servant
to your wishes

love said
you already have
your own wings
i will not give you
more feathers

and then my heart
pulled itself apart
and filled to the brim
with a new light
overflowed with fresh life

now even the heavens
are thankful that
because of love
i have become
the giver of light – Rumi. Ghazal number 1393, translated by Nader Khalili

http://www.poetseers.org/the-poetseers/rumi/i-was-dead/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cindy Neely: (606) 923-o437

e-mail: neelycynthia@gmail.com

Christina St. Clair: (606) 585-4315

christinastclair55@yahoo.com

Invitation into Love

Mingo Presbyterian Church, Mingo, WV http://wvpresbytery.org/Churches/church100/tabid/247/Default.aspx

The Church states repeatedly that Jesus died on the cross to save us from our sin and thus forge the path back to the wrathful God of the Old Testament who banished us from the Garden of Eden because of the sinful choice of Eve, the temptress of Adam.

Perhaps many people need to hear this fear-based message, to shake them up, make them look more deeply at their behavior and their hearts, but my experience of Christ, however, was contrary to this idea of being born as a sinner in need of a savior.

My call to Christ came in the form of an invitation into love.

Perhaps it was simply that I was very needy at the time, hurting in the throes of divorce with my life turned upside down, with nothing stable for me to cling to, that I entered a church.  Perhaps.

Perhaps the experience of a whole community of loving people who welcomed me impressed me.  Perhaps.

Perhaps seeing a community willing to reach out to the poor and needy around them made me see a way to find purpose and be a help to others.  Perhaps.

Or perhaps my imagination got the better of me.  Perhaps.

One day I was sitting in the back of the sanctuary off to one side when I saw the figure of Jesus, the traditional one with outstretched welcoming arms, standing on the chancel.  I knew no one else was seeing what I was seeing and I also knew I was seeing with my “third eye.”  This was sixth sense stuff and it scared me.  But what didn’t scare me was the feeling of the call.  I felt completely loved, in spite of the brokenness of my life at that particular time.  I felt peace and love radiating from Jesus, cutting through all the clutter of my broken relationship.  My broken heart began to heal.

To this day, many years later, I can still call upon and feel that love emanating through me into my core, bringing me peace and comfort and awareness.  It was the beginning of my journey as a Christian.

It has been a struggle in many ways.  I have learned so much, become deeper, kinder, and stronger.  I have shed some of my fear.  I have shed my need to remain isolated although I still, and always will, enjoy solitude.  I can no longer call God only Father, for God is also Mother.  Often I pray to Shekinah who rises and gives birth to the world and to life.  For me as a woman, Shekinah is a model of deity who I am able to internalize, which empowers me in ways I had not imagined possible nor ever understood.  I stand now as an equal with Jesus, because Jesus did indeed teach me that I was as good as everyone else, that everyone else was as good as me, and when we serve one another out of passion and freedom, we ourselves are freed.

As Rumi says: When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.”

 The thing is that this invitation into love from Jesus the Christ is available to everyone.

Rumi–Secrets

Rumi was a thirteenth century mystical poet. He believed passionately in the use of music, poetry and dance as a path for reaching God. He was a founder of whirling dervishes in the Sufi tradition.

Today I came across a Rumi quote that I love (Listen, A Seeker’s Resource for Spiritual Direction), July 2012, vol 6: issue 3).

“The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you; Don’t go back to sleep. You must ask for what you really want: Don’t go back to sleep. People are going back and forth across the doorsill where the two worlds touch. The door is round and open. Don’t go back to sleep.”

The author, Pegge Erkeneff, of the article, Cultivate Spiritual Awareness, which contains this Rumi quote, suggests, “Stop everything you are doing, be still.  Ask yourself, and then ponder: What is it I truly desire in my life? Dare I believe in possiblity?”

To dare to believe in possibility is akin to believing in the Mystery, God; through faith, through awareness, through being still and listening, we are able to cross the barrier between the physical and spiritual, entering into union with life-giving wholeness.