seeking the One who has already found you

by Geoff Hall on November 28, 2014

November 2014 – seeking the One who has already found you

Mentoring for word, image and performance art.

Mentoring for word, image and performance art.

Born out of love; the universe, the earth and you. The foundation of all this stuff is Love.

 

If I was to look back on this year, with it disappointments, mistakes (some of which still need rectifying), some great highs along with merciless lows, can I still detect that thing we call Love?

Early in the year a book was recommended to me, written by Martin Laird entitled ‘Into the Silent Land’.

Into the Silent Land by Martin Laird

Into the Silent Land by Martin Laird

The book takes us back to the time of the ‘desert fathers’ and the 4th Century AD; to a collection of writings (The Philokalia) which are  synonymous with the nature of their teaching which is Greek for ‘lovers of beauty’) They teach a ‘contemplative practice’ which stills the many noises and thoughts of the mind (Laird calls this the ‘cocktail party of the mind’) and instructs us to enter the stillness of the heart. To coin the poetic language in this book, we ‘seek the One who has already found us’.

It is not a technique, because a technique suggests expected results (a + b = c), but it is a way of life.

 

During the darker times of this year, it was easy to let depression overwhelm me, for those dark thoughts to dictate to my abilities what I could and couldn’t do – to feel that I was the sum total of such dark thoughts. But Laird reminds us that those dark brooding moods and emotions are but the weather passing over the mountain, when we are in fact the mountain!

This contemplative practice has been somewhat hidden by teachings of ‘name it and claim it’ and a shopping list spirituality – indeed the worst kind of consumerism.

Whilst at time overrun by fear and doubt along with feelings of being forsaken or forgotten, Laird reminded me of an ancient saying and definition of God as ‘the One whose centre is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere’. The great sense of being separated from God is nothing but the ‘illusion of a fallen world’; it is smoke and mirrors. When we enter the ‘silent land’ of contemplation we see God is the core of our being, we are stilled, the dark brooding weather front passes and we silence the voices of the ‘cocktail party’. It is there that we realise we’re created as rays of light into a world wherein darkness appears more natural than light.

 

And what does all this have to do with being an artist? My experience as a writer speaks to me of this darkness, of this sense of exclusion, of separation, of dwelling on the margins of everything and being at the centre of nothing, but in the stillness of the heart I’m at the centre with my Maker.

 

Whatever you have experienced this year, you are a ray of light shining in the 4 darkened corners of the earth and this light cannot be diminished.

 

Be well.

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