He held sorrow and joy in a delicate balance of serenity and peace

Barnaby was like a mood, a fragrance of the harmonious inner life, permeating everything with which he came into contact. He knew sorrow and he knew joy, and he held them in a delicate balance of serenity and peace. He knew how to respond equally joyfully to an invitation to walk or talk or sit together, which seems to me to be a particular kind of training in grace -- a willingness to respond easily and happily to even the most modest adventure together. Perhaps it could be said that within his framework of being a dog, he lived life as a spiritual exercise.

Multiple streams of time

What a gift is the recognition of our multiple streams of time! Most of us have had some experience of breaking out of the monochronic monotony of one-thing-afteranother. Time flies; time crawls or stands still. We regularly experience the
spectrum of party time, hanging out time, condensed time, wasting time, scheduled time, falling in love time, anxiety time, creative time, borning time, dying time, meditation time, timeless time. Ecstasy and terror have their own temporal cadences, and in high creative moments as well as in mystical experience, the categories of time are strained by the tension of eternity.

Barnaby just walked, looking at the river or the woods

Barnaby was what I call "heart smart." While other dogs accompanied me in our intellectual journeys and listened while ideas came in, Barnaby just walked and walked with me, looking at the river or the woods and feeling deep feelings. Rarely have I had a walking companion who could just be silent, not having to make a talking point or a barking commentary. With Barnaby, one barked in silence in which much of a more contemplative nature was communicated -- peace, simplicity, the glory of the natural world, the presence of God.

Creativityi is the urge to wholeness

Creativity is the urge to wholeness, the urge to individuation or to the becoming of what one truly is. And in that becoming we bring the cosmos into form.

The joy that spins the universe

Somewhere downstairs a door slammed, and my father entered the house laughing. Instantly, the whole universe joined in. Great roars of hilarity sounded from sun to sun. Field mice uttered, and so did angels and rainbows. Laughter leavened every atom and every star until I saw a universe inspirited and spiraled by joy, not unlike the one I read of years later when Dante describes his great vision in paradise.

"D'el riso d'el universo." (The joy that spins the universe). This was a knowledge of the way everything worked. It worked through love and joy and the utter interpenetration and union of everything with the All That Is.

Love knows no limits

Resurrection is to engage at the core of the Heart of existence and the Love that knows no limits. It is to encounter and surrender to That which is forever seeking us, and from this to conceive the Godseed. Resurrection presumes a void that precedes it, an emptying of our existence. Being empty, we then can be filled; being unknowing, we become knowledge; being nowhere we are suddenly a citizen of the great Realm of Love.

Each moment may be experienced as a new birth

Embrace the open moment, recognizing that each moment may be experienced as a new birth and as a spectacularly open time, when what we do can make a difference to whether the human race grows or dies.

Contact with the Divine Beloved

Contact with the Divine Beloved is never complete until some other human being feels more loved and cherished as a result of its contact. Further, as all who have ever communed with the Beloved have discovered, the more deeply you encounter the Divine Lover, the more sensitively you feel the agony of the world; the more you are called to care more, feel more and think more deeply about decay in the social and moral order. You live in a state of radical empathy with all those in need. You are transparent to the agony of the world. Together with the Beloved, you must reach out to allay this suffering, or to do what you can in the light of the perspective of grace and the energy of spiritual partnership.

True partnership between divine and human realms becomes possible

Mystics and contemplatives offer a perspective on resurrection that seems to mirror their own experiences of illumination and unity. They tell us that perhaps regeneration is effected through a profound state of self-reflection, possible only to those who have become transparent to transcendence and are coded by that experience with a quality of eternity that does not, cannot, die with death. This implies that a new order has been created within spirit, within nature, within the soul, within the meaning and matter of history. Here we move out beyond miracle into the heart of mystery, and consciousness grows into the capacity for co-creation with God. The world turns a corner, and true partnership between divine and human realms becomes possible.