Reflections

Category: Pilgrimage

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Abbey Bookshelf: Pilgrimage

And it was then that in the depths of sleep Someone breathed to me: “You alone can do it, Come immediately.” -Jules Superveille, from ‘The Call” You cannot travel the path until you have become the path. -Gautama Buddha Wayfarer, the only way is your footsteps, there is no other. Wayfarer, there is no way, you make the way by walking. As you go, you make the way and stopping to look behind, you see the path that your feet will never travel again. Wayfarer, there is no way – Only foam trails to the sea. -Antonio Machado I have written here

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Landscapes, Maps, and Pilgrimages

Tomorrow is my birthday and lately I have been longing for some retreat time.  I was wise enough to block off the next few days to rest in some stillness at home while my dear husband is away.  This time of retreat is partly in preparation for a much larger pilgrimage I will be taking in just a couple of weeks and partly because I find birthdays invite reflection as I celebrate the anniversary of my own birth and sit in vigil waiting for what needs to be revealed for this next phase of my journey. This past week I wrote about the need to be willing to

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Playing in the Field of Possibility

This summer has been rich in experience, epiphany, and insight and there is still another month to go.  I will be processing all of it for many months to come.  Going to Ireland in June was amazing, it connected me with a land infused with holiness that sings in my memory.  I felt a deep connection to those ancient monks who developed a Christianity that was wild and organic, that emerged from their land and traditions as a nature-embracing people.  I felt anger at the history of the Roman Church with its love of order and its petty argumentation. I was

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Home Again

My husband and I returned home last night after three amazing weeks in Ireland.  We went to Dublin, Waterford, Kenmare, Dingle, Galway, and Westport and drove through much of the countryside.  We saw ancient stone circles and tombs, remains of monasteries, wondrous illuminated manuscripts, field after field filled with woolly sheep and majestic trees, we perched at the edge of the Atlantic ocean, we walked and walked, and we listened to music that makes your pulse quicken.  It is hard to know where to begin exactly, but I imagine it will unfold in my reflections in the coming weeks.  We experienced

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Blogging Sabbatical

I am leaving for a pilgrimage to Ireland next week and so will be taking a blogging Sabbatical for the next month until early July.  We have done so much planning, the housesitter will be staying at the Abbey to care for our Abbess Tune, now all that is left is a few more details like packing and then heading off on our adventure.  The next few days will be busy, so I need to set aside any other work.  While I am away I have some resources for you to peruse.  K. at the blog Onehouse recently started a community blog called Listening Point about the contemplative

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A Great Pilgrimage

A Great Pilgrimage I felt in need of a great pilgrimage so I sat still for three days and God came to me. -Kabir Pamela McCauley shared the wonderful poem above in a comment she left on my post about Africa.  She also shared this great quote from a Ugandan Sister who said, “You have watches, but no time. We have no watches, but plenty of time.” Wishing you a weekend of spaciousness. May the Holy One come to you in the stillness and fill the wide open spaces of your heart. -Christine Valters Paintner @ Abbey of the Arts (photo from sheep farm on

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In Preparation for a Pilgrimage of Ancestry

    Next summer my husband and I will be taking a five-week trip to Ireland and Austria.  We saved up our frequent flyer miles for free tickets and without a dog at home to worry about leaving behind for that long, we decided to seize the opportunity.  (We will definitely get another dog eventually, but have decided to wait until after this trip). Ireland and Austria may seem like an odd combination, but we each have roots in these places.  My father was Austrian and Latvian, he moved to Vienna when he was 12 years old during World War II to live with

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