putting on the mantle of our mutual longings

Posted by on 03.12.10 | 7 Comments
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Not hammer strokes, but dance of the water, sings the pebbles into perfection. –Rabindranath Tagore

Today

I voiced

croaked, if you will, for the first time

that I want to step out of the role

of supporting cast

and take on the role of teacher.

I have done this informally.

I have done this for years.

I have done this for good and poor reasons.

My friends have been encouraging me for a long long time.

I’ve been ignoring them with flourish.

And yet, with spring playing hide and seek, there’s this new thing being born, the synthesis of this thesis: I have nothing new, useful or worthwhile to share…and this antithesis: In my body I have a whole body of knowledge. And so do all the women I know.

The synthesis goes something like this:

I am not a scholar. I am a piss-poor theologian. I am barely a student, and then only in the broadest sense of the word. I have lived and loved, struggled, lost, won, cared less, cared more. I have lived outside my body and now ever more inside its mysterious confinement. I have something to say about what life is. Not what it means–that truly is best left to the philosophers, scholars and theologians= the ones who read books and dialogue about big issues.

However, I know how to help hold sacred space. I know how to help people feel safe. I know how with gentle humor to move and be moved with Spirit, which tumbles us all like rocks in the River.


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Our Lenten Study Group is powerful, mystical and alert. We want to encircle the truth of our spiritual DNA and tease it out of its hidey-hole. We want to continue our work with being at play with the feminine aspects of God. Not the Goddess, but the feminine aspects of God. We are thinking of studying the Gospel of Mary Magdalene after Lent concludes.

And I’m going to convene a retreat to do just that.

You may look at me and say, ‘What’s so unusual about that?’ If so, you haven’t had the privilege of meeting the introverted, introspective, tending towards insecurity, tending towards resistance, tending towards mutiny at the slightest hint of self-authority, parts of me.

But I’m wrapping all those parts up in a prayer shawl and letting them rock on the front porch for a bit.

Here it is: I’m developing a retreat to explore the feminine aspects of God-as-embodiment. If will be called something like: Finding Form for our Longing or something like that. It will include leaders and participants opening us through sacred dance (is there any other real kind of dance?), singing, nature drawing, journeying to places unknown, laughter, group study and great soulful food/cooking together. The retreat will likely be all women–although men will be invited. We will leave nourished, challenged to live more deeply into our longings for connection, wholeness and juiciness. We will not be looking at texts for Sophia. We will be looking in the mirror. The body of wisdom that flows from this time together will be the next platform, the next thesis. Only to be challenged by an antithesis so that some new upstart Synthesis will be soon be born. We will be the living text.

So there. I’ve said it. Now it’s all over but the shoutin’. And the shouting will likely be in May, June or October. Of THIS year, silly.

If you’re interested in being part of whatever this thing is that is being born, let me know here on the comments, on my FaceBook page or send me an email at beth at virtualteahouse dot com

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Big thanks for this birthing go to: Andy, my beloved fellow bloggers on the Virtual Tea House (they teach me so much!), the Lenten Study Group ( you know who you are!), my Dream Circle Sisters, Jena Strong of Bullseye, Baby!, Krayna Castelbaum and a host of friends and ancestors who have been waiting for me to wrap myself up in the prayer shawl, the mantle of our mutual longings.

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