Liminal Luminous

a wandering, wondering space of devotion, creativity and freedom.

Searching for connection

I yearn to have a deep connection with the divine. Regardless of what group I am exploring my spirituality with, the ‘form’ of the divine, that tidal pull towards IT** is inescapable, I am powerless to resist, and I don’t want to, I want to be swept away with IT, to be at One with the divine.

And yet….

How do I allow that to happen? How can I create the right situation for that to be the case.

It is not so long ago that the ‘allow’ in the sentence above would have been ‘make’. One thing I have realised is that you have to make space for it to happen, it isn’t something you can force into being.

I completely understand the appeal of becoming a nun (or a monk) and being able to dedicate one’s life to IT. Fully immersed in prayer, with spiritual companionship all around, not to mention the trappings of ritual to help lift one. But I am a married woman, I love playing my music, seeing my friends, being with my husband and dog. I love the work that I do and I would like more of it and I am training to be a programmer too.

So how can I, with an everyday life, keep IT as the soul and centre of my being?

Listening to those small nudges is important, not dismissing them as being silly. Allowing time I think is key, not rushing from here to there, but lots of quiet moments to reflect and ponder. And of course I say all of this as a woman who is child free. I know full well that all of my friends my age have young children, they barely have time to complete a train of thought before they are interrupted, let alone find quiet time for prayer…

There must be away for all of us to access the divine wherever we are in our stages of life, including those who work long hours, either as paid work, or the incredibly exhausting (and yet underrated) work of being a mum to young children.

**Note – I am not happy with IT as a for the divine. It is a very cold pronoun for something so wondrous. And yet, I am no longer comfortable with a gender specific pronoun, either male or female. And unfortunately the word ‘God’ comes laden with baggage, as does Jesus. I need a new word…

6 Comment

  1. Then you’d have the numinous liminal luminous. Wow!

    What you say in this post reminds me of Julian of Norwich, who was, as you know, an anchoress. The anchorites/anchoresses (forgive me if you know all this) lived in a small house built onto the outside wall of the sanctuary part of a church. They had a window into the church to let them participate in the Eucharist, and a window onto the street where troubled people who came to them could converse. Sometimes they had a garden, they had a servant (to get their groceries and take out the trash), but they personally never left the house, which was known as an anchorage. Their vocation was specific and local; it was to anchor the Light for that particular place and time.
    Julian of Norwich’s book (Showing of Divine Love) was the first published work by a woman. In it she writes about the motherhood of God, about his love which vanquishes and saves all. If you don’t know it, you might find it helpful. The recent, much promoted, work of Dr Janina Ramirez on Dame Julian is less scholarly and less insightful than that of Julia Bolton Holloway, who is herself a nun living on the island of the dead in Florence, where she has established a library and an alphabet school and craft workshop for the persecuted Roma.

  2. Hah, numinous liminal luminous! Love it. I do like word play!

    I’ve read Revelations of Divine Love, not Showing of Love, I will look into that, thank you. I think it is a different translation of it.

    I’ve just re=read (for about the tenth time) your 52 wisdom stories and I still didn’t link to Julian of Norwich in my thoughts.

    I wonder how one would be a secular anchoress, I don’t go out into the world much, but I do go out a little…. I would go mad not being able to get to the woods and the sea I think. Maybe it is about anchoring the light to here – and here being my patch of Thurrock….???

  3. Yes, I think that’s it. Imagining the Light pouring in through your crown chakra, and filling you up, and shining through you as a gift of peace to those with whom you come in contact. When people write about anchorites, they often focus on the staying-in-one-room aspect, but I think what anchorites were doing was concentrating — like boiling down stock or something, intensifying, layering up the Force within them. establishing a density of stillness and presence; really, properly paying attention.

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