Since coming to Mass and the Catholic Church I have found a formal more structured connection, which has become a thinning of the veil between me and God, this is a feeling that I never personally experienced in the same way in other places of worship, although I knew of the strongest feelings of those precious ‘One to One’ moments when being alone with nature, even as a child. Although having found this thinning of veils, no veil be’s quite so thin as the connection that I have learned to have with Him here, right here within my sanctuary when the house is still, whenever I can tune in without distraction. I know also the beautiful chapel in my little church, a sacred space, is preserved for this deepest connection, it is very very special. I Love my faith and I Love this very special place, and I Love too my other spiritual spaces that I have personally discovered – I Love spending time in prayer. I was unaware of this deepest prayer in the same context before I came to the Catholic Church.
Many of the people who I have had the pleasure of meeting through my Catholic community and so too through the wider Catholic community have touched and inspired my life with their insight and integrity. I have been so blessed. I Love my Catholic Faith despite the pressure I have felt at times, living in a celibate marriage being one of those pressures. Being in a physically intimate relationship previously, and to have that part of my life change because of my situation, has meant that in some form or other I have had to project those same deprived energies into a poetic transcendental Love which has become evident in my writing, my expression, my physical feelings, my prayer, my poetry, my imagination, and my very being, even in my communication with my beloved. This does not feel unholy after all one reads of St Teresa of Ávila and St John of the Cross experiencing this deepest connection in a similar way.
I have also loved deeply on a human level beyond friendship in a truly God-loving way, a Love that I was previously unaware of. A Love so powerful and ever deep. It certainly was not a sexual Love for me initially when the person was present but one of deepest Love, respect, admiration, care, joy, inspiration, affection and affiliation. Not of sexual desire but of a beloved unification of souls. If you have ever experienced this Love you will know that is not born out of sin but bestowed by God in deepest Love. It appears to be only the English language that doesn’t have the vocabulary to properly depict this Love.
In my initial awkwardness and clumsiness of expression and in my spiritual immaturity and not understanding this kind of Love, and in all our human complexity having experienced this deepest Love, communications were botched graunched and latterly denied. This of course caused problems, and the way the situation was badly handled did not harness peace or resolution for anyone. I attempted to write that this was a falling in Love – and it was. It was a Love in God awareness (my first in fact) that I had not previously known or met before. Still for me it was not born of sexual desire but of souls profoundly connecting. I have never been an unfaithful woman inside or outside of marriage. Ironically however now I am living formally as brother and sister in order to right a marriage that is considered to be adulterous by the church. The complexities of being born into a secular world and later coming to faith can be crucifying. I was not a woman brought up of a faith and so to have married my second husband was not to know that the Catholic Church would not approve of this marriage and view it as adulterous, I came to the Catholic Church 6 years after I was married.
My writing, poetry and prose meant that I could work through those complex feelings in a mature, unadulterated and understanding way, thus my writing became the vehicle in which I could express those deepest yearnings of my soul. My situation became the catalyst for my writing, expression whereby I could vocalise and make sense of my suffering and joy and paint a picture not only of my crucifixion but also of my reaching out and touching God – in response to God reaching out and touching me, through the charged conduit of supernatural Love. A Love known in deepest prayer. Those transcendent unifying energies that may connect us to our beloved through our humanity and our spirit, even erotic emotions – as in the song of songs. The body in profound prayer and worship is a spiritual flight of deepest Love to unite us with our creator, and is only possible because of the reality of our humanity and spirit. St Teresa of Ávila and St John of the cross, and St Dominic and St Francis in their physical and spiritual devotion and worship reveal their own Truths, all were graced with ecstatic Love. I believe this not just to be metaphorical.
This week it became obvious that my poetic metaphors and also my poetic Truth is decoded well by some and poorly by others, leaving much open to the scrutiny of others perceptions and projections of what they believe is rightful or wrongful. This week I experienced online nastiness cast upon the water for ‘community’ observance, leaving someones personal opinions about ‘stranger me’ forged. This is not of God. This is not the behaviour Jesus teaches us. A lesson for me in my openness to learn. Our beloved Lord was never so graceless, if Jesus looked down and drew in the sand and refused to condemn a woman who had allegedly committed adultery, then one wonders how Jesus would have held someone who was celibate and living under a cohabitatio order and Loved spiritually in God. St Teresa of Ávila and St John of the cross, St Dominic and St Francis had prayers answered which were not misplaced, but a blessing and an enlightened path professed, which appears to be given in grace to just a few. I am on a journey of my own spiritual revolution. Being denied my husband, being liberated in prayer, and being fulfilled spiritually, all through ‘meeting’ God beyond another Love. Amazing Grace.
In the light of the below radio programme, the underground anonymous though visible operation of blog writing networks – even ones professing to be ‘spiritual witnesses’ need desperately to be looked at in a critical light, especially if they insist on indirect ‘anonymous’ communication. This week I experienced ‘spiritual “guardians” patrolling’, I removed myself from the conversation. This meta-physical realm has darkness as well as a bright light, and as well as kindness on rare occasions it reveals a certain spite. This different movement of ‘church’ (however broad) that I have become aware of are not always God led but often led by man and of Ego with a capital E.
The Love of Corinthians 13 is of God, God who is Love and Spirit and Truth. And so it is with clarity, authenticity, honesty, decency, openness, understanding, integrity, loving kindness and peace that we should be with one another. At times I have experienced collusion, contradiction, judgement, manipulation, conspiration, hypocrisy, trolling and at times fear mongering which is most definitely not of God. Some of the ‘righteousness’ that I have experienced in this hidden dimension is a movement whereby people project their judgements not necessarily based on fact, and reinforce them between one another, despite their opinions being based on not personally knowing the people they are judging or directing. Under whose authority this behaviour operates I have no idea. But I know that I am under Gods.
For me it is important that we communicate in Truth, with integrity, openness and respect and always with loving kindness, so that we may all learn from these precious life experiences. When others fall short of this behaviour especially in the name of Jesus, then we have a duty to kindly speak the Truth under His protection, and remove ourselves from the situation.
- Monday 22 April 2013
“Here be trolls…
What is it about the digital world that encourages normal people to disregard the rules of everyday life? Is it the cloak of anonymity the net offers? The social rules of online communities? Or simply human nature?
This week, Aleks Krotostki delves into the dark side of the digital world to explore whether or not the internet fuels the breakdown of social and moral boundaries.
She speaks to a troll who claims Jesus and Socrates as her forebears, Dave Eshleman who was one of the guards in the infamous Stanford Prison Experiment and Professor Alex Haslam who recreated the experiment for the BBC, with startlingly different results.”
For those who want to blog authentically, this is worth listening too.