Hope you are well.
Here is some mid-May wisdom.
1:1 Happy are those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or take the path that sinners tread, or sit in the seat of scoffers;
1:2 but their delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law they meditate day and night.
1:3 They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper.
1:4 The wicked are not so, but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
1:5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
1:6 for the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
The Ecstatic Truth
“The sound of God strolling in the garden in the evening breeze…” – Genesis 3:8
There is a wonderful moment in the director Werner Herzog’s documentary, “The White Diamond” in which a native of Caribbean Guyana stands in front of his country’s largest waterfall. The waterfall is four times the size of Niagara falls. The man points out a drop of dew hanging on a plant in front of him. He then shows that it is possible to view the entire falls through the prism of this dew-drop. The camera zooms in and the viewer sees millions and millions of gallons held in a single drop of water. Then the man says, “I believe the entire universe is held here.”
It is a jaw-dropping scene.
And Herzog scripted the entire thing.
He was attacked for it, accused of “distorting the facts.” He roared back. “Filming it in the way I did brought the film to a deeper level of truth. There are deeper strata of truth than the accountant’s truth. There is such a thing as ecstatic truth. It is mysterious and elusive and can be reached only through fabrication and imagination and stylization.”
I wouldn’t say that the story of God walking through the garden is “fabricated,” but it’s certainly imaginative and it is definitely stylized. We need more than facts. We need the truth that beats like a heartbeat beneath every fact, the truth that no proof can grasp, the ecstatic truth that cannot be reduced to whether or not it “happened.”
O God, thank you for giving us the beautiful truth that burns straight through the claim that in the cool of the evening you walked through the garden. Amen.
On the day when
the weight deadens
on your shoulders
and you stumble,
may the clay dance
to balance you.
And when your eyes
the grey window
and the ghost of loss
gets in to you,
may a flock of colours,
indigo, red, green,
and azure blue
come to awaken in you
a meadow of delight.
When the canvas frays
in the currach of thought
and a stain of ocean
blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters
a path of yellow moonlight
to bring you safely home.
May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
may the clarity of light be yours,
may the fluency of the ocean be yours,
may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow
wind work these words
of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.
~ John O’Donohue ~