nature

White bird flying in the silence

White bird flying in the silence
take my soul with you.

I, a sparrow in God's sleeve,
nestled in the creamy folds,
fed with manna sweet as honey
from the honeycomb.

White bird flying
in the silence,
take my soul with you.

~ from INSIDE DREAMING by Shirley Daves

Letting the plants identify me

Watching gardeners label their plants
I vow with all beings
to practice the old horticulture
And let plants identify me.

~ Robert Aiken Roshi, thanks to Tina Beneman

April 2015 (Vol. XXVIII, No. 4)

Happy spring, Friends! Wood frogs have returned with their raucous declarations of fecundity. Peeling back layers of brittle, brown oak leaves, I am overjoyed to find beneath the debris of winter tender shoots of green pushing up toward the light. We need to re-imagine our understanding of our relationship with nature — not above or apart but within and among. Can we peel back dead layers of hubris and abuse to rediscover living ways of reciprocity and gratitude? Move beyond using nature, whether as mere metaphor or possession for plunder, toward a relationship cradled in communion and covenant? How can we fuse science and ecology with creative arts and spirituality so that all our learning and teaching and dancing and walking might plant seeds of renewal and resilience and healing? So that we all—together—might raise our raucous voices, might grow upward toward the light.

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April 2013 (Vol. XXVI, No. 4)

Springtime greetings, dear friends. Even though there may still be some cold days, we've come around again to the time of year when nature outdoes herself, gloriously bursting forth with the burgeoning life that has lain dormant and hidden during the cold months of winter. Even the most pragmatic among us might feel like waxing poetic when in all directions we see only the beauty of the earth and feel again the soft, gentle air of spring. Surely the presence and glory of God are never more obvious than during a beautiful spring! It's time for us to grow and bloom as well., for we are part of nature; as new life bursts forth in nature, so it does in us when we allow it. Happy Springtime, friends!

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We're all part of nature

I believe we are part of the universal rhythmic process because we're all a part of nature--we are in it and of it. So like the ingoing and outgoing waves, we breathe in a similar way--we flow. Cosmic creativity and creative evolution are always going on. Everything is always singing.

~ Robert Cox

Secretly nature seeks to ferret out God's track

Nature's intent is neither food, nor drink, nor clothing, nor comfort, nor anything else in which God is left out. Whether you like it or not, whether you know it or not, secretly nature seeks, hunts, tries to ferret out the track on which God may be found. . .

~ Meister Eckhart

This world exists as a sheen of dew on flowers

Come quickly -- as soon as these blossoms open, they fall. This world exists as a sheen of dew on flowers.

~ Izumi Shikibu (Japan, b 974?), thanks to Maureen Flannery

Something in nature knows what it is doing

No matter what the weather looks like outside the window, life is warming up. Something in nature knows what it is doing; even if from time to time winter icily touches the napes of our necks with its cold fingers. . . . Woods will fill with black-birds and grackles, and swollen buds will cling like small birds to wet branches. . . . Old oaks sleep as long as they can, while the rest of creation exhibits an aching restlessness to move on. As everything begins to move, an almost forgotten song plays in our chests, the music of beginning again. The early small birds flit here and there on the rising winds; a lone, red-winged blackbird sits unmoving in the empty cherry tree . . . waiting . . . To live is to change, to move through one transition after another, to reinvent one's life, as needed. . . .

~ from AN ALMANAC FOR THE SOUL by Marv and Nancy Hiles

Turning again to the earth

It is a wholesome and necessary thing for us to turn again to the earth and in the contemplation of her beauties to know of wonder and humility.

~ Rachel Carson

Connection to nature within ourselves

The need is for the connection to nature within ourselves; only then can we understand how to act toward nature outside ourselves. Along with the obvious crimes our culture is committing against the natural world, we would be wise to remember that the main crimes are the crimes against our inner nature. From these inner crimes all the outer evil arises. This is the teaching of wisdom.

~ from TIME AND THE SOUL by Jacob Needleman
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