Dear Great Mystery that was and will be and is:

Let us this day, and often throughout our lives, enter into mystery, wonder, and awe, turning over the questions:

Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?

Yes, there are answers to those questions. A range of narrative options is available. Let us not settle on any. Let us simply hold any answer, any story – whether curt and simplified, or long, complex, and detailed – whether felt with assurance or qualified with “probably” or “maybe” – and then move past it, return to nonnarrative presence, enter again into the mystery into which the questions beckon us.

Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?

We don’t know. The stories and fragments of story that guide us, that help us make meaning – are always incomplete, always obscure as they reveal. Therefore, let us hold our stories lightly and amend them often, guided always by compassion, attentive ever to who is hurt, and how, and who is liberated, and how, by the story before us.

May the stories that guide us guide us toward justice. May they keep before us that the conditions of our lives today derive from and depend upon centuries of dehumanization and genocide. We shrink our souls when we forget that.

May the stories that guide us guide us to notice where fear and greed, the roots of historic atrocities, continue today in our own hearts. May they help us see where our current habits of thought exclude from reverent concern and respect. May we grow our awareness of what we place outside our circle of loving and kindly regard.

Knowing that it is from our own wounding that we wound others, let our stories guide us toward healing, toward justice. Then will possibilities of life without violence, without coercion, without fear, without greed, and without deceit unfold.

Dear Great Mystery that was and will be and is:

Teach us to tell the stories that will lead us in the ways of compassion, that will open our hearts to all the pain and oppression that is and ever was. Strengthen our capacity for reality so that we will not seek the false comfort of turning away. Open our hearts to the joy that flows in when compassion flows out. Open our eyes to see where there is hurt. Commit our bodies, and the hours of our lives, to the work of love, of inclusion, of justice.

And grant us, from time to time, the grace of setting aside all stories to re-enter mystery, to re-inhabit nonnarrative presence.


No comments:

Post a Comment