AN ECSTASY OF LOVE (for Marguerite Porete (declared heretical by 21 male theologians))

Just as there’s joy beyond joy
There’s also love beyond love.

You’ll discover this when you die to everything except love –
That is, when you eat, sleep, and work only for love.

Suddenly, a door opens
And a long-lost parent from heaven walks through
And asks for you

Only you – and nobody else.

When your spiritual mother or father recognizes you
And says “Come” –
You do!

Love beyond love is where flowers come from –
Where birds travel to in winter –
It’s also the place where fresh water enters the world –
That is, love beyond love is a “spiritual rain”
Coming down sufficiently to drench us –
Inside and out.

Love beyond love is when God begins talking through you –
When you open your mouth and what comes out is what God’s been feeling –
Because you are no longer you
You are God come to life inside you –
Like Marguerite –
And that’s when you start looking, sounding, and smelling like
Joy!

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SURFING

Human beings desire control in their lives –
Which is both a good, as well as a bad thing.

Actually, life is more like surfing –

If you go too far forward –
Or too far back –

You fall in.

It’s the same with our attempts at control –
Not enough, and life starts to fall apart,
Too much, and it can freeze up.

Western culture teaches that we should strive for as much control in our lives as possible
But this has led to embracing a “material” God.

It’s similar, isn’t it, to what Jesus said about the birds –
Which don’t have to worry about what they eat or wear.
Jesus knew people had to work –
But thought it just wasn’t the most important thing.

The paradox each of us needs to solve
Is how to become our “true self” –
The child that’s still able to play –
In the midst of a responsible adult life.

It is a lot like surfing, isn’t it –
Balance being the most important skill.

Playful as a child –
Responsible as an adult.

This takes a lot of practice
Like all other critical life skills.

OUT HERE WITH THE BIRDS

America’s future doesn’t lie in wealth or power –

Instead, it’s a proof text
Demonstrating how different kinds of people
Can live in relative peace with one another –

If this works in America
It’ll work everywhere else on earth –
And provide solid evidence that reasonable laws
Can substitute for blood, cultural, or racial ties.

America’s future doesn’t lie in religious cults, no matter how ancient, popular, or patriotic–
But in a country purified of violence and materialism.

Until recently, Americans have been living a wrong idea –
That we have somehow been “chosen” –
An idea that, repeatedly, brought destruction upon earlier civilizations.

Really, it’s the “everydayness” of America that’s so great!

Recently, however, we’ve gotten somewhat off track –
And have found ourselves lost out in the grass –
But, maybe, that’s not so bad –

Actually, it’s really sort of peaceful
Out here with the birds.