Season of Creation - Touching the God Space
In the 1st week of the Season of Creation we mentioned there are three principles of nature in the awesome web of life, the first one being DIFFERENTIATION or DIVERSITY. God’s phenomenal imagination gifts us with millions of different species - plants, animals, human beings, with no two ever alike. But in the last 80 or so years many species, some common foods and animals, have become extinct. Only recently at home, we have not been able to buy tapioca, a favorite dessert of several Sisters. Why? ... because widespread drought has cut tapioca production in the 2020/2021 crop year by 10-20%. (Tapioca comes from the cassava plant, a basic staple for 800 million people.) We are losing diversity because of nature’s imbalance! And in the long run losing forever something of God’s own creativity and self-expression.
In the 2nd week we looked at our interconnection and relatedness, and were called to celebrate COMMUNION. We need each other, and we need nature; nothing survives without some basic elements, all gifts of God. We live in a world of cosmic unity, in a huge family of sisters and brothers. To live in separateness is an illusion, since no one person or thing stands alone. Yet, our air and water are both becoming increasingly polluted, and we experience weather phenomenon never seen before. What we once called “forest fires, changed to “megafires” and last week on TV one governor referred to “climate fires.” While towns are being decimated, also, sadly, we have recently seen more and more human division and systemic inequality rather than Communion.
This 3rd week we will look more deeply into the principle of INTERIORITY, perhaps the hardest quality to really grasp. We are not a collection of objects but a communion of subjects???? Did you ever feel treated like an object or a thing??? What is a subject? Every single being, whether animate or inanimate, shares an inner integrity or essence implanted within it and willed by God, loved by God and necessary for the fulfilment of God’s evolving plan. Yet these deepest qualities of interiority are visible only for those with eyes to see! This is very import because this is what makes everyone and everything a subject. It is the key, really, helping us come to any sense of balance and wholeness based on God’s loving and creative hand in our lives. But how do we touch this inner-being, this God-ness?
Last week at the Cape my sister-in-law, who is an avid humming bird lover, happened upon a poor little creature lying on the ground barely alive. She picked it up, stroked its body gently, took a tiny feeder with sugar water and held it to its beak. Amazingly the humming bird lifted its head and slowly began to drink, gaining strength as its little body expanded. Eventually it tried to fly, fell, started up again and then took off. Was there an intimate connection of some sort felt between the two? Certainly there was on the part of my sister-in-law! I would also venture to say some kind of avian satisfaction also flowed over the little creature finding the warming touch and right sip at the right time. Was an inner essence of both hummingbird and human being shared at that moment between life and death? Yes, perhaps there was a deep connection, if every creation of God is a mystery and sacrament of the Divine Presence. Remember what has already been said about God’s two books of Revelation, the first being Nature, the second Sacred Scripture.
Touching this inner space of Interiority is indeed empowering. To BE in your own Essence, where the wise, loving, compassionate, powerful and radiant part of yourself abides is to feel God’s love! And to live out of that God Space in experiences of Diversity and Communion, is to share this Divine love with another creature. This way of living opens us to essentially grasp the true meaning of Pope Francis’ message in “Laudato Si” and feel our call to “Care for our Common Home.”
When this perception nurtures the beginning of true love and compassion for all God’s creatures, then the whole planet takes on a different ambience. Concern for the future of each child and every part of creation becomes more relevant. It is from this heart space that the truths of social and economic justice are most rooted in the Gospel values of Jesus. This is the level where we can most personally talk of the needs of renewing, repairing, and restoring our Earth which is essential to make the most effective systemic changes. Perhaps even the restrictions of the COVID Pandemic can be seen in a new light and we and our planet can begin to regain our yearned-for balance. Let us stop to reflect a little and take a prayerful look:
- If possible this week try to walk more and drive less, enjoying nature but also minimizing your use of fossil fuels.
- Notice the beauty of flowers along the way; see the autumn tinges of yellows and reds where the Divine Artist has been dabbling. Forget yourself and your task for a moment and take in the beauty. Pray for those out west whose world has been turned to the greys of cinder and ash.
- If you buy any organic veggies this week, pause and consider where they might have been grown and the hands that planted, nurtured and harvested them. Say a pray for that person or persons.
- Try to greet neighbors and strangers alike, showing hospitality and positivity. At least smile as you pass them by and give a nod to this sister or brother who shares the planet as a common home with you.
Try to encourage attitudes of hopefulness and trust in God’s care for each person and every piece of creation that surrounds you.
All God's Creatures got a place in the Choir (Touch your funny bone)
CAFOD Animated Laudato Si
CAFOD Laudato Si for Children (also good for adults).