nuggets of wisdom: women in praise of the sacred

there are many books i turn to in times when i need uplifting, peace, encouragement, or inspiration.  one of these is Women in Praise of the Sacred: 43 Centuries of Spiritual Poetry by Women { edited by jane hirschfield }. i was raised Christian, and still consider my self so–though very far liberal/left-leaning, and find comfort/ solace/ understanding outside of the “traditional” church setting.

i want to share 2 VERY different poems, the authors separated by over 500 years, from totally differing faith traditions, yet both bring me such a sense of joy and peace.

In the autumn, on retreat at a mountain temple

Although I try                                                                                                                                                  To hold the single thought                                                                                                                             of Buddha’s teaching in my heart,                                                                                                              I cannot help but hear                                                                                                                                the many crickets’ voices calling as well.                                                                                                         ~ Izumi Shikibu

On the Ineffable Inspiration of the Holy Spirit

You unseen lightning flash, you darkly radiant light,                                                                            you power that’s heart-infused, incomprehensible being!                                                                 Something divine within my spirit had its being                                                                                     That stirs and spurs me: I sense a curious light.

Never by its own power the soul is thus alight.                                                                                        It was a miracle-wand, a spirit, a creative being,                                                                                   The eternal power of breath, prime origin of being                                                                                That in me kindled for himself this heaven-flaring light.

You mirror-spectrum-glance, you many-colored gleam!                                                                            You glitter to and fro, are incomprehensibly clear;                                                                                in truth’s own sunlight the spirit-dove-flights gleam.

The God-stirred pool has also been troubled clear!                                                                               First on the spirit-sun reflecting it casts its gleam,                                                                               The moon; then turns about, and earthward, too, is clear.                                                                         ~ Catharina Regina Von Greiffenberg  { emphasis mine }

Posted on 9 June, 2016, in series and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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