Let’s DancePosted on: March 6, 2019, by : David
We’re back! Another year of discovery, delight and deepening as we journey in community with each other. The theme of our first gathering for the year last Sunday was Manifesto and I shared my quest ‘not to change the world but to learn to love the world.’ That ‘manifesto’ was shaped by the writings of Oriah, and I felt that I would like to share with you an excerpt from her second book, The Dance, as an expansion of the manifesto I mused about on Sunday. Maybe you will see in it an invitation to join the dance as we explore life and faith together during 2019!
‘What if it truly doesn’t matter what you do but how you do whatever you do? How would this change what you choose to do with your life?
‘What if your contribution to the world and the fulfilment of your own happiness is not dependent upon discovering a better method of prayer or technique of meditation, not dependent upon reading the right nook or attending the right seminar, but upon really and seeing and deeply appreciating yourself and the world as they are right now? How would this affect your search for spiritual development?
‘What if there is no need to change, no need to try to transform yourself into someone who is more compassionate, more present, more loving or wise? How would this affect all the places in your life where you are endlessly trying to be better?
‘What if the task is simply to unfold, to become who you already are in your essential nature – gentle, compassionate, and capable of living fully and passionately present? How would this affect how you feel when you wake up in the morning?
‘What if the question is not why am I so infrequently the person I want to be, but why do I so infrequently want to be the person I really am? How would this change what you think you have to learn?
‘What if becoming who and what we truly are happens not through striving and trying but by recognising and receiving the people and places and practices that offer the warmth of encouragement we need to unfold? How would this shape the choices you make about how to spend today?
‘What if you knew that the impulse to move in a way that creates beauty in the world will arise from deep within and guide you every time you simply pay attention and wait? How would this shape your stillness, your movement, your willingness to follow this impulse, to just let go and dance?’
[Oriah, The Dance, Harper 2001, p xi]
I’m looking forward to all that this year holds for our community of faith, especially the discoveries we will make together as we seek not so much to change the world but to learn to love the world! I do hope you will join the dance!