What is my song?

08-15-2013 | Bob Sabath

Daily Reflections by Stefan

Today we welcomed a new group of pilgrims to the Pilgrimage of Peace and said farewell to others. So, we begin again.

We shared the story of the woman at the well (Eugene Peterson's paraphrase called the Message) and Jesus from John's gospel. Peterson's paraphrase makes for lively imaginative reading/hearing. We appreciated the robust character of the conversation between them. Out of this edgy talk can come good learning.

We shared the poem called The Fountain by Denise Levertov hearing it once and then engaging in the poem with a kind of call and response form line by line, back and forth aloud. We noticed the connections between the gospel story and the poem.

We looked more closely at the first Beatitude: Blessed are those who possess nothing and no one. Blessed is your thirst. Blessed is your hunger.

Questions included: What is the fountain for me? What is the source from which I drink? Why do you think Levertov puts such strong rhythmic emphasis on the repetition — "Don't say, don't say there is no water..." Who is the woman "shading her eyes"? Who might she be for me? What is her intention?

In the Gospel Jesus and the woman at the well are crossing social and religious boundaries by just talking with each other. How is crossing social/religious boundaries a refreshing drink? What happens when we cross these boundaries? Why would we even consider doing so?

What is my experience of the first beatitude? My experience of loss? Of detatchment? How has this been a blessed experience? Or not?

In the small groups today we listen to each other and offer each other the precious gift of respectful, even reverential listening. No interruptions. No contradictions. No verbal feedback. Only listening with a compassionate heart. A great gift indeed.

Perhaps a practice today might be to sit with one person with the conscious intention of giving the pure gift of a listening heart.

Listen to song: Lamb of God.
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