“Go where your best prayers take you. Unclench the fists of your spirit ….”
“Listen to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery it is. In the boredom and pain of it, no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it, because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.”
~ Frederick Buechner, from Telling Secrets and Now and Then: A Memoir of Vocation
“Listen to your life … touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it.”
Life has a holy and hidden heart to it. Your life has a holy and hidden heart to it. My life does. Isn’t that a revelation?
Listening to Life. Considering that Life — and Life as it’s living and expressing through each of us and everything else — has a Life and holy heart of its own, but we can “touch, taste, smell (and listen)” our way to it.
Many of our long-ago ancestors had a sense of this, but it’s not the easiest wisdom for those of us in our talky talky, noisy, consumption-addicted, always-plugged-in, rush-rush-it’s-urgent, make-it-happen, control-freak culture, is it?
First, the notion that Life — including our own Life — has its own agenda, it’s own holy heart. I know; breathe.
And to make matters worse, Life’s agenda and holy-heart-yearning may be quite different than the ego-success agenda we think we’re supposed to be making happen because consumer-culture tells us so, which is enough to send most control freaks into spasms.
Secondly, the whole listening thing, which is not an area of mastery for a lot of folks — whether listening to one another or anyone else, much less Life itself — primarily because it’s a function of receptivity and stillness, among other things, and most are taught to constantly perform in order to succeed.
So listening to your life, or me listening to my life, might require a wee bit of a change in habit: first slowing, stilling, becoming receptive; and then listening, still receptive, and watching for clues and patterns that we, in our usual noisy hurry, miss because we’re just not paying attention.
I know from my experience that Life does have its own rhythm, its own pulse and wisdom, and its own timing. And if I sync up with that, it seems that grace and synchronicity flow more readily. And that’s a wondrous and yes, fun, thing.
When I push and wrench and hammer things — and this has happened more than I’d prefer to admit — it feels a lot more out-of-sync, a bit rougher, the way more impeded, the experience nowhere near graceful, and frankly it’s exhausting (yes, awhile back, I hit that wall going a thousand miles an hour, so have that handy lens of experience to draw from!).
So breathe, unclench the fists, loosen the grip, relax the delusions of complete control and of having to be perfect, and dare to believe that maybe, just maybe, there’s something even more wonderful taking shape in its wabi-sabi, freaky perfect-imperfection, and with a more graceful timing than anything we could push and hammer and wrench and chisel into place prematurely.
Maybe, just maybe, Life’s pretty smart, and wise, too, and knows where it’s going, and where we’re going with it.
And maybe, just maybe, that’s the secret to living into the intersection of where our joy meets the world’s need (to paraphrase Mr. Buechner on vocation).
“Breathe deep of the glad air and live one day at a time.” as he advised. Remember that you can trust the Divine, and Life.
There is a flow to it, and our wise, intuitive, receptive, responsive selves know how to navigate like that.
For many of us, this remembering is deep practice, day by day, and even minute by minute. But with practice, our recollection of it grows stronger.
If you’d like more nourishment from this stream of inspiration, follow your intuition and choose one (or all) of these:
Crazy, Holy Grace, and/or
Our Deepest Calling (from The Wake-Up Juice).
I also created the Feminine Mojo audio programs to help each of us strengthen our intuitive, receptive, Feminine self, so you can tune in to those (the guided meditations are relaxing, too!).
But mostly, right now in this minute, breathe deeply of the glad air, gather back your energy from hither and yon, let the Holy Heart of Life move you, and let your heart and Life speak and guide you to its holy, hidden heart.
And I’ll practice into that, too. Deal?
Big Love and Happy Spring (or Autumn ‘down south’).