Kintsugi is the Japanese art of mending broken pottery with beautiful elements such as gold to illuminate the repairs and renewal.
Yesterday I wrote briefly about ritual, initiation, and the honoring of cycles. The title of the post echoed back to the passing of a dear friend, now nearly a decade ago. I found her picture yesterday in the process of my continued journey clearing my photo archives of the last 20 years.
Birdsong and windchimes dance with the river of traffic sound coming in the open window behind me, the cool fresh morning air fills my heart, and my body feels warm still from the heat of the morning sun and breakfast with Caroline on the veranda. This is this moment.
Today my ritual pattern of writing first thing upon rising was broken, like a saucer clattering to the floor…
Arriving to my computer where I would usually hide the windows of running programs leaving only the smiling face of Chenrezig on one monitor, and the imagery of a peaceful Mountain Lake as the background to my journaling app, I was greeted by the invitation to finish the software update that had started in the night.
“Yes!” I selected, with glee and without concern for repercussions… The screen went dark.
“Installing updates, estimated time remaining, 45 minutes.” Said the small white text in a field of blackness.
This morning will go differently than those of the recent pattern, I realized. No surprise really.
Caroline arrived this morning just as my meditation was finishing. I busied myself, checking a few messages and practicing bringing some realization “off the pillow,” while giving her a few minutes to settle from her extended drive down the mountain.
As she came into the room I noticed immediately some distinct quality to her presence. I asked, and she shared that she had come from a long day yesterday of ritual process and ceremony. The smell of sage still traveled with her and a night of short rest left its contribution to the continued field of altered state and mystical awareness.
Ritual and ceremony are used to draw our attention to the passage of time, the movement of cycles, and evolution itself. Whether it is the pieces of an old cup bridging the gap into its next life, a tree falling in the forest and giving life to new saplings, the fall of an empire, or a dawning of a new evolutionary paradigm of consciousness, we gain wisdom when we can attend to these transformational qualities of the eternal moment.
Discussing MettaCare recently with Dave and Tyler, we struck on this recognition that injury and care provide the catalyst for a continued recognition and nurturing of our shifting identities. Heraclitus offered the insight, “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.”
With that I find myself back to bridging the timeless essential, and the practicality of the moment. (A reference to a few days ago journal entry that prompted this reply from my friend Robin, a poem.)
The work of life itself is one of opening like a woman’s sex to that spacious eternity to receive the inspiration of wisdom as all matter circles about, and then to return like the masculine to that pointed assertion of that which must be done. It is thus that life longs for and re-creates itself in the endless aspirational cycles of infinity.
Longing and fulfillment, I think, are subjects for another time. Let me return for now to the throb of ritual and cycles.
I did not write first thing today. I met first with meditation, then found myself greeted by the presence of ritual ceremony embodied. I rose and sent the device to renew itself, turning my attention to the sacred gift of conversation in the morning quiet with Caroline as she went about the making of breakfast and the brewing of coffee.
Into the sun and garden we went, deeper into those reflective moments inquiring into ritual and cycles, masculine and feminine, men and women, relationship, sexuality, and the creation act of every moment of the kosmos.
Taylor’s words echoed in my head, her reply to a recent journal entry recounting another of these sacred dialogue I am grateful to enjoy, ‘how and where do we make the time for the luxury of such reflection?’ Is this not our real work, I wonder – to open our hearts, minds, and hands to the wisdom of the world and then to embody that wisdom that it might live through us as a gift to all life itself becoming?
We are in the initiatory and transformative space together right now, as pandemic sweeps the world. We are in initiatory and transformative space together right now as changing climate changes geography, agriculture, and habitat. We are in initiatory and transformative space together right now as the modern worldview, vastly extended calls out in longing for a new way of seeing.
Astrology and divination attempt to point to these things, perhaps some with more efficacy than others, or maybe it’s more context dependent than that… Regardless, this seems a time to mark, both for myself personally, and as I see it, for the world at large.
What cycles are beginning and ending for you? What has been broken, and how will it be more beautiful for its new shape? What rituals might serve you today in honoring that self you are leaving behind and welcoming that self you are becoming?
Today is the birthday of a beautiful friend of mine. I will honor that today. Another friend is tending the front lines of suffering today. I will honor that as well. Still another enters the cauldron of an intensive four-day learning cycle, I will honor that as well.
I will work on the fence to keep out the rabbits from the garden today. I will build further on the invitation to MettaCare today (feel free to chip in to that effort if you are so inspired! 😉
The bird song still mixing with the chimes and the river sound of traffic flowing in through the open window, isn’t that just the thing… The beautiful moment is all there is.
God gets to know things, we just get to ask questions…