This blog will discuss sacred space as it pertains to motion. In previous blogs and videos, I talked about how to know when you have found a sacred space and how to take a few contemplative moments to enjoy being in that sacred space. I also discussed how to protect your own sacred space. Today, I will open a conversation about what to expect when we are called to move out of a particular sacred space and to move into another one.
So, perhaps it is just me that, as I find myself moving into my more senior years (or perhaps it’s not just me but also others), but in any case, learning that we cannot merely stay in one spot, regardless of how safe it feels, forever. And, in saying this, I would emphasize that it applies as truthful even more so in spiritual senses than in merely physical ones. However, let me begin with the physical and the material.
I am now in my late fifties and I am finding that many physical items that I have so lovingly collected over the years are quickly losing their value, no longer serving me or becoming completely useless. I am slowing down, bit by bit, day by day, even though I am not really all that ‘old’ and I cannot keep up with the enthusiasm and energy that I once had for so many of the passions that I have had through my earlier years … passions such as music. For example, I have many music books but often I can barely manage to play my piano for even an hour before I just cannot continue.
Likewise, I do not have the same energy for bicycling, exercising, reading, listening to music and many other examples. It is difficult, in fact, to fathom. This loss of energy can become very discouraging. I wonder why did I collect everything I have to only to find that I can now barely bring myself to take an interest in even half of them? What was the point? So, to sum it up, the experience of it all is bewildering and leaves me at loose ends. It even makes me feel rather disoriented. I, in fact, still have many dreams and ambitions that I wish to have realized before it is my time to leave this earth. How, I ask myself, can I make even a few of these happen?
Well, last weekend I experienced a bit of a revelation on this difficulty. I began to realize that IF THERE ARE PEOPLE, PLACES AND THINGS THAT I AM MOVING AWAY FROM, THEN IT MUST MEAN THAT I AM THEN SOMEHOW MOVING TOWARDS SOMETHING ELSE! Do I know exactly what that is? No, I do not. However, the realization of this has opened a pathway for me that I very much needed. And, it is this pathway that I wish to share with you in this blog.
I will attempt to explain with an analogy. Have you ever canoed, kayaked, skied, ran, walked or in any other way, enjoyed the ability to move? When you did this, what did you need to know in order to be able to accomplish it? What was required for success?I’ll tell you about it from my own experiences and from my own perspective.
When I was younger, I enjoyed many moments … and many sacred moments … in a canoe. It was one of my favorite modes of transportation and so, whether in a canoe or a kayak or skiing or otherwise, there is one thing that is imperative … and that is to have a sense of direction and presumably a DESTINATION in mind. This is required because otherwise, instead of flowing nicely down a river or skiing down a wonderfully powdered ski hill, one could easily end up in the weeds or smack into a tree. So, the point is … yes, we are moving AWAY from our push-off point but HOW do we ensure that we find … and stay upon … a good and manoeuvrable track? How and where do we find our navigating tools? Is it okay to just drift along sometimes? If so, then for how long?
These are not always easy answers, particularly perhaps in a spiritual sense, but that is precisely why people the world over will almost always turn to their holy books when faced with uncertainty. Our holy books give us a starting point for any question we may have in life but, and this is somewhat new to me for sure, they also provide a ROAD MAP! Going with the holy book that I use, the Holy Bible, there are hundreds of stories of (ancient) peoples who faced difficulties, challenges and uncertainties just as we do. They were born unto this earth, lived out their lives and passed on and as it is for us, they faced enormous uncertainties and they had to make decisions in order to move forward. So, the purpose of reading some of these stories is to learn about HOW the peoples in these stories, these ancient peoples, found their way and how they received a SENSE OF DIRECTION. Most of all, the stories illustrate about how the ancient peoples received MESSAGES FROM GOD.
So, if you, as I, find yourself moving away from the familiar into the unknown, remember this quotation “And wherever you are, there am I.” [Simon Gathercole, The Gospel of Thomas: Introduction and Commentary] This is a message that contains one of God’s promises to us and I provide the reference that I took it from in order that you may explore it more fully if you wish to do so.
So, consider meditating upon those words, or others (“Be still and know that I am God” is another quotation that I find meaningful), for a few moments … as I often do, and as I am fairly frequently reminded to do. Sit quietly somewhere in a sacred spot and listen for messages from God before proceeding with whatever your plans may be. Of course, do all the earthly things that are required to implement your plans, whether you wish to go on a vacation or to move to a new place to live or even to simply visit a friend. But remember, we can do nothing in our own power. We rely completely on our higher source, God, to provide us with the information that we need to know for direction in our lives. We really have no choice but to trust that this higher source, God, knows best what our needs are, what our desires are, and what the best path is to reach them, if accepted.
In conclusion, and the way that I see it for now, is that it is not only for myself that have to “have my ducks in a row” in order to move from one sacred space into another but also that I need to be in harmony with what God’s plan is for my life. I must try to check in with God before proceeding with any so-called plans and ideas that I may have. I also must wait and listen. I need to hear God’s messages for me and I need to watch for signs of God’s approval.
I have to say that so often in my life I have charged ahead, often completely haplessly, without taking time to consult with God, and then with chagrin, only to learn that I have bumped up against a concrete wall. If you have experienced that, then you will understand very well what I am saying. True, we cannot sit in one holy sacred spot forever; however, we must be connected with the holy in order to proceed forward at all.
- Are you in a state of motion? How do you know? How would you describe it to another person? Are you feeling comfortable or uncomfortable about it?
- If you are restless, what is this telling you about yourself and your situation? Have you taken the time to meditate and to pray about it in order to better understand it?
- Which passage(s) in your holy book do you find to be both helpful and comforting to you when you encounter moments of uncertainty or when you face dilemmas? Write this passage down in your personal journal and contemplate upon the meaning or meanings contained within the words.
- Go for a walk in your favorite sacred walking place and spend time observing MOTION. For example, what do the birds do? Where do the birds go? How do you think the birds KNOW where to go? What do you think the birds are searching for as they flit back and forth? Ditto for other creatures and wonders that you observe in God’s universe. In sum, do you SEE that there is just SO MUCH to SEE?
Follow the link below to view the accompanying YouTube video: