The Shining Place

ceramic objects, detail of installation 1995

A friend of mine I hold in very high regard sent me a cd recently of a talk he gave at a yoga center in California.

This man is one of the people in my life I consider having a very direct thread to God.

We never see one another but seem to be in each other’s inner circle just the same.

He wanted me to hear this particular talk he gave because it had to do, in part, with illness.

What I got from hearing him speak is his interest in exactly how to cue into the wholeness of God and how to make our way back to that shining place.

Teetering on the razor’s edge as we do as chronically ill people (without taking on that definitive moniker)

We go back and forth between suiting up in our best boxing gloves

And having a good ‘lie down’ when the partner in the ring throws us against the ropes.

I am at the point in my own life where the distinction between what is beautiful and ugly blurrs.

There is:

“A perfectly functioning human body is the epitome’ of God’s grace.”

“A sunset is a ‘take-your-breath-away’ perspective shifter.”

“The softness and vulnerability of a newborn child’s skin is a direct hook-up to the the address where God lives.”

And then:

“Wow.. I actually made the call to my friend and asked her to get some groceries for me and she said yes and seems even eager to help and my heart softened at my good fortune to have such a friend.”

“My sister and brother-in-law gifted me with their Honda minivan so I could have the freedom of taking my wheelchair with me and not miss out on life.”

“I cried from heart-bending tenderness at the privilege of sharing my life with a creature such as my dog who continues to trust me even though I yell or confuse her with my own displays of fear or hopelessness.”

Are these examples not just as close to God as the previous ones?

I’m just asking, here.

Because my sense is that there is a part of each of us, even the most enlightened, which experiences ‘less than perfect’ as flawed in some way.

And we forget about the magnitude of the BEAUTY it takes to:

Keep courage.

Remain kind.

Admit frailties.


Go against the culture when we are drawn in another direction entirely.

Show huge and wet tears.

Forgive again.

Fall down.

Get up.

And get up again.

To me.. these things which will never measure up in the glitter department

Are none-the-less as close to perfect as I know so far.

And I will share with you that I’m pretty sure I know God’s address.

But it is one we must discover all by ourselves.


3 Responses to “The Shining Place”

  1. Sherri on January 3rd, 2011

    what i have come to find….
    my imperfections, my flaws are an opportunity for another to grow…
    that sounds like a huge ego thing but that’s not how i mean it…

    my waning independence forces me to ask for help (which is humbling for me) …and allows another to engage in an act of compassion…
    so it’s a two-fold growth…
    does that make sense? and it’s all beautiful!

  2. Carol S. on January 4th, 2011

    This makes it sound like EVERYTHING is possible and beautiful in God’s eyes. I like that. Here’s one for you…I just read today…
    “The beginning of anxiety is the end of faith, and the beginning of true faith is the end of anxiety.” George Mueller

  3. Dorothyanne Brown on January 10th, 2011

    Lovely. Thank you.

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