Awake, my dear.
Be kind to your sleeping heart.
Take it out in the vast field of Light
And let it breathe.
— Hafiz from I Heard God Laughing: Poems of Hope and Joy
Apprehend God in all things, for God is in all things.
Every single creature is full of God and is a book about God.
Every creature is a word of God.
If I spent enough time with the tiniest creature—even a caterpillar—
I would never have to prepare a sermon.
So full of God is every creature.
— Meister Eckhart from Earth Prayers: 365 Prayers, Poems, and Invocations from Around the World
Nature takes us directly to Life, her world and the inner world of love being in deep communion. She brought me there after the fire of loss when all I wanted was to die. In those days, I didn’t believe I could survive. She showed me how the sea holds light and shadow, and how sunlight rides on the rising waves, everything gleaming. I saw the ocean glisten in full sunlight, balancing sparkling vessels of light—small shimmering stars—on the ocean swells. The ripples of light reached past my weariness and confusion until I could see what I needed to learn. Everywhere, light is pouring through the deepest places.
— Paula D’Arcy from Stars at Night
Loving the Presence in the Present
We cannot attain the presence of God because we’re already in the presence of God. What’s absent is awareness. Little do we realize that God’s love is maintaining us in existence with every breath we take. As we take another, it means that God is choosing us now and now and now. We have nothing to attain or even learn. We do, however, need to unlearn some things.
To become aware of God’s loving presence in our lives, we have to accept that human culture is in a mass hypnotic trance. We’re sleep-walkers. All great religious teachers have recognized that we human beings do not naturally see; we have to be taught how to see. Jesus says further, “If your eye is healthy, your whole body is full of light” (Luke 11:34). Religion is meant to teach us how to see and be present to reality. That’s why the Buddha and Jesus say with one voice, “Be awake.” Jesus talks about “staying watchful” (Matthew 25:13, Luke 12:37, Mark 13:33-37), and “Buddha” means “I am awake” in Sanskrit.
— Richard Rohr from Everything Belongs