Wednesday, October 31, 2012


 ( art:  Barn Owl Full Moon by Angela Jayne Barnett)

It's a very chilly night. About 4:30PM, when I left school, the sky was roiling with grey and white clouds to the west, and in the east, deep indigo backlit by a strange sun . Thinks are trying to settle down after Hurricane Sandy.  We had rain and wind, and some without power - though nothing compared to New Jersey and New York.  We lost 19 trees on our property.

The chilly night reminded me of all the trick-or-treat nights of my childhood. How I loved that!  That was in the days of the 1950's when people feared the communists, not serial killers and child abusers and poisoners of candy.  I loved the Walt Disney annual showing of  "Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman"  and  the "Night on Bald Mountain" episode from Fantasia.
"Night on Bald Mountain" reminds me of something I read somewhere
 somewhere that on  Halloween night, the veil between the two worlds is very thin.  I was spinning a poem out of that... haven't gotten too far:

Thin places...
Places where the veil between this world
And the other world
Is thin..
Truth abides stays lives in thin places
Raw, hard-to-face truth...

I found these thoughts on a website about Celtic Spirituality called  "Thin Places"
on that site, the author, Mindie Burgoyne - Walking Through Thin Places, says

"Yet the comfort, safety and strength to face that truth also abides there. 
We become very small there,
Know something much bigger than us
a place where one feels that mysterious power , God...

"The place itself calls you, draws you into itself, transports you into the presence of the world beyond this world.  The thinness of place moves you into the presence of the mysterious power.  There, all things you perceive through your senses are charged, electrified, illuminated with the presence of that power...

The meditation room at Carmel is a thin place
The crypt at Chartres is a thin place
The grotto at Lourdes is a thin place
The Sanctuario de Chimayo is a thin place
Crater Lake is a thin place

quoting Mindie Burgoyne some more:

“once you’ve been in a thin place and allowed your spirit to absorb  that which transcends the senses, all need for definition ceases.  Our spirits learn differently than our minds.  All through our lives we walk through these places.  Some people notice the thinness.  Some do not.  Yet the idea of "thin places" is not new.  Memorials - made by humans  - have been marking thin places for thousands of years.  Ancient people, especially in Ireland and Britain were forever marking spaces as sacred and worth remembering, as if to say, "something special happened here."
They are often marked by human spirits that have gone before, felt the thinness and been changed by it.  Thin places not only transcend the senses, but transcend the boundaries of time and space.  While you’re there, time seems to stand still, and there is a communion with the human spirits that have walked there before and are yet to walk. Thin places are all about connection -  with God, with the Other world and with all who have lived, are living and will live in generations to come.”

Saturday, October 20, 2012

October's Bright Blue Weather

Gorgeous day outside

I took this picture about a week ago. The colors are even more vivid now.

Since I last wrote, we had Fall Break from the college.  I managed to get the papers graded, and then spent several days at the ocean.  Wonderful birdwatching!

Trying to get back into writing , but having a difficult time. I've been escaping into murder mysteries and various thrillers. Read and loved Louise Penny's  A Rule Against Murder.  She's very good portraying the inner conflicts of her characters as well as the intricacies of the plot.  Also read Minette Walters'  The Chameleon's Shadow. Very different from the Perry book, but also very good.

Today I finished reading Jean Vanier's wonderful Harvard lecture  From Brokenness to Community.
This is more of what I should be reading!  Not to mention that it's a reading for my freshmen.  It's a very powerful essay on those two words, on their deep, inner meaning.  He's talking from his long experiences living in the L'Arche Community, but it applies to my own experiences in my own religious community.
Get this:  "Community is a place of conflict: conflict inside each one of us. There is first of all the conflict between the values of the world and the values of community, between togetherness and independence... The next source of conflict is in learning to give space to others so that they may grow, rather than competing with them and lording over them... The third source of conflict  is the conflict between caring for people and caring only for oneself.... The fourth source of conflict is between being open and being closed... In order to have greater security, people can sacrifice their personal growth, freedom and becoming, to the god of belonging - belonging which gives security and power... A community which is called to keep people ope is a vulnerable community that takes risks." ( Vanier 33)    I could go on and on.  Very thought provoking, very much calling me to reflection on my own ways.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Posting Problems

I've been trying to post on this blog for about two weeks, and it kept blocking me and giving me an error code.


I sent about ten help messages to every place I could find to send them.


Then, tonight, I noticed a fellow blogger with posting problems say that he could post on his blog when he used the Firefox . 

So I tried that, and bingo!


It's been a busy few weeks; lots of preparation of lessons for this new freshman course.

The weather has been humid and stormy, with morning fog that burns off by noon.  The view from my bedroom window has been ghostly: