Friday, September 23, 2011

The Great Unfolding

I was having lunch with an old friend this week and we were discussing the general state of affairs: disastrous global economy, hopeless job market, general malaise taking hold amongst the people. I've never known so many overstressed people personally.

A quote by renowned conservationist, Wendell Berry, came to mind: "It may be when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work, and that when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey." ~ Wendell

This economic crisis is, in a strange way, an opportunity for personal growth. It's the great unfolding. Both as a nation and as individuals we are being stripped of the protective outer leaves to reveal what's underneath. I know there's something good and decent inside. It's a lesson from the garden.

And it's okay to reveal our true selves. We really don't need all the smoke and mirrors anymore, do we?  I really wish the media would stop feeding it to us. Our heads are filled with ideals of the "show lives" we are supposed to be living. Then we are inundated with doom and gloom reports that crush our spirits and pacified with utterly mindless fluff about the lives of ersatz celebrities. How can anyone get their footing on that rocky shore? You have to get quiet. Connect with your inner spirit. Ignore all the minor ravages of insect attacks on your outer leaves and remember who you are at the core. It's about what you love, and who.

I read a lot more poetry these days than I have in recent years. I'd like to share this Rilke poem I heard Joanna Macy recite on NPR's "On Being."

On Being: "Let This Darkness Be a Bell Tower" by Rainer Maria Rilke | A Wild Love For the World with Joanna Macy

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