Primitive religion is not believed, it is danced!

Arthur Darby Nock

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
And only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Browning

Sunday, September 8, 2019

sitting in the dark

“The waitress brought me another drink. She wanted to light my hurricane lamp again. I wouldn't let her.
"Can you see anything in the dark, with your sunglasses on?" she asked me.
"The big show is inside my head," I said.”
                                          Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions

Some say we live in a time of darkness
That there are forces in the world

Evil forces
Dark forces

That surround us
And overwhelm us
So we are left frozen in the dark

Unable to see
Unable to find a way forward

And yet, darkness is not all bad.
Barbara Brown Taylor remarks,
“I have learned things in the dark that I could never have learned in the light, things that have saved my life over and over again, so that there is really only one logical conclusion. I need darkness as much as I need light.”

What occurs to me is that in the darkness, the outer world is muted
And we are driven inward

We know how this works

We lie in bed, our suddenly the “big show” in our head starts
And we become aware of thoughts and feelings that
During the busyness of the day
We did not notice

Perhaps on purpose
Perhaps not

In the darkness feelings ooze out of our core
And our mental scripts for good or ill
Play out
Dancing in our frontal lobe

“I am not enough”
“What if…”
“Where am I going?”
“Is my life worth anything?”

So too the darkness of the world
Drives us inward toward our soul
A bit like dogs with their tails between their legs
We seek


I will have to admit
I have thought more about what I value
And more about what Jesus really taught about how to live (and love)
Since the darkness of the times has grown

Each new insult to the earth
Each new act of graft
Or cruelty

Turns my focus to the big show inside my head
Turns me in toward my core
Where dark things lurk
But where too
The Spirit wanders

And that is not

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