The Sacred from an earlier teaching


There is a common fountain of love that gave birth to this world and to all of us; a common fountain of love from which we all drink, that renews and sustains all being. There is a vast intelligence that is only barely discernible to our human minds.
There is something we can know that is real and true but that cannot be proven. Yet it can be noticed, every day if we are paying attention. We notice this something in what the eye deems beautiful, what the ear deems harmonious. We notice it in forests and oceans and mountains, in flowers and juicy ripe tomatoes and birdsong, We notice it in the amazing complexity and order of this world. We notice it in the eyes of our beloved and, if we open our hearts, in the countenance of every other human, every other being.
This thing that we know, if we allow it to touch the deepest aspects of our being, gives us certainty that we are cherished, that we are safe, that life is meant to be a grand adventure, a joyous endeavor, and that everything and everyone, every thought, every word, every action, every seeming catastrophe and disaster, every heartache, is ultimately redeemed in the integrity of that intelligence and the astonishing scope of that love.
Some people have called this God or Spirit, Allah or Buddha nature, but all such names are inadequate to describe something that we only know by living it, and then only in bits and pieces which we try to put together into some comprehensible whole that, today, I will call The Presence.
Everyone, at one time or another, has experienced transcendent moments— Moments that simultaneously exalt and humble us. Moments characterized by unqualified openness to The Presence, filled with overwhelming awe, gratitude, and reverence. It happens during the most seemingly mundane of activities. It happens in the presence of beauty. It happens as we are making love. It happens in the face of great tragedy. It happens to anyone, at any time, and for no reason at all except that we have tripped over the ever-present Presence. These moments are sublime, the most immediate and personal proof of the holy, the sacred, that most of us are likely to experience in our lifetimes.
But we might also come to some direct experience of the sacred simply by contemplating a night sky or a thunderstorm, by sharing in the experience of doggie joy while playing with a beloved pet, by holding the face of our beloved in our heart's gaze. And we certainly may consciously encounter the sacred by allowing ourselves to feel our interdependence with one another, our common origin and essence, our immutable kinship with all beings, all worlds, all life.
Then we realize that all possible blessings are already ours, every day, every moment, with every breath and every beat of our hearts, in this world that is nothing if not the direct and actual Being of That Presence-The Presence which lives in us and as us, which is everywhere and nowhere, totally accessible and totally incomprehensible at once. So let us acknowledge The Presence with gratitude and awe and do our best to magnify, today and every day, the loving creative intelligence that is our birthright.


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