Wednesday, June 1, 2011

2011.05.31 Three Muses on Spiritual Writing

I have been guided along my way by three Muses—Religion, Spirituality, Feminism. The three often contend for my soul and they also come together as one when it matters most.

These three Muses taught me:

-that Religion offers nourishing gifts like Eucharist, the Bible, and Jesus
-that institutions though clumsy are not the enemy, and that most communal efforts are organized in some way, hopefully placing equal value on every part of the whole.
-that patriarchy is not men’s fault and that women must help to change it for the sake of relationships
-that Spirituality is not only a catch basin for deep and true feelings but an inner crucible where the divine Spirit stokes holy fires within individuals and also takes divine energy beyond the one to the many, igniting healing connections and creating human community
-that Feminism wherever She lands is a force for justice helping realize the radically egalitarian dream that all creation is one and a beloved community is possible
-that all genders, and today there are many variations, are holy
-that some day Femin-ism won’t be needed to urge us along

Spiritual writing at its best pays attention to the Muses as it seeks to plumb the depth dimension of people, places and things. It seeks within the holy, divine, eternal, beyond. It speaks of Mystery which can not be measured replicated or contained in any way because it is not yours; you don’t make it happen; and it does not belong to you though it is graciously given and shared with you.

The paradox of spiritual writing is this: you have to write it, to put it into some kind of words, but the more you try to explain or define it the more it sluices away from you. (See, I've just tried to do it anyway!)

So just write! (Bull Durham as a hesitant baseball player at bat was told: Just bat!)

Write your words. Write it down. If your words are true and deep they may by accident or grace communicate Mystery to someone else.

That’s all you want isn’t it?

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