Environment and the arts
- How are things going (share what is on the heart at the level you feel comfortable)
- Song – sing together or listen to a song that is theme of class
Be still and know that I am God
Be still and know that I am
Be still and know that I
Be still and know that
Be still and know
Be still and
2) Environment and the arts (to stop long enough to look, enjoy, and appreciate).
Embracing the connection of mystery and the ordinary. Seeing with new eyes because of the connection we as humans have with the divine. Comprehending with spiritual eyes, looking, listening, and sensing the need to appreciate and care for creation, and acting on this.
As we become more aware, being able to see because there is more to appreciate that we actually can see. By looking closer, to magnify, look through a magnifying glass the object looked at is enlarged; looking at creation magnifies our appreciation of the creator. This inspires us to co-create with the creator, communicating this through art and action, through community art initiatives that bring awareness of how we are stewards and have to tend to and look after this beautiful world we have been given. We need to live in appreciation rather than degrade, pollute, and consume, the is a gift that God has given for our good, we have to be a people of transformation and rejuvenation, recycling and repurposing, and redeeming for the purpose of pleasing God and the earth.
We are asked to be overseers of the creation given to us as a gift. However, before this there is a delight in the heart of God to relate with us, and give to us. Genesis 3:8 when they heard the sound of God strolling in the garden in the evening breeze, the man and his wife hid in the trees of the garden, hid from God. The Message Bible.
“People try to put a shroud over truth. But the basic reality of God is plain enough. Open your eyes and there it is! By taking a long and thoughtful look at what God has created, people have always been able to see what their eyes as such can’t see: eternal power, for instance, and the mystery of his divine being. So nobody has a good excuse. What happened was this: People knew God perfectly well, but when they didn’t treat him like God, refusing to worship him, they trivialized themselves into silliness and confusion so that there was neither sense nor direction left in their lives. They pretended to know it all, but were illiterate regarding life. They traded the glory of God who holds the whole world in his hands for cheap figurines you can buy at any roadside stand.” Romans 1: 20 – 23 The Message Bible.
There is a natural connection with creation, or the created in Celtic Christian Spirituality, a oneness with the earth, as it provides beauty to view and appreciate, food to eat that sustains us and given to keeps us alive. Sustained Physically, Emotionally, Spiritually. A trinity of wellbeing. The Tri remids us of the community we are welcomed into, to have fellowship with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Triads are mentioned in the Enneagram. Instinctive, Thinking, Feeling, or Body, Head, Heart.
We tend to be in and out of buildings, surrounded by city life, in the cubical of our existence, there is a need to reconnect with the beauty of the gift of creation given to us for our pleasure.
“The great Irish teacher John Scotus Eriugena taught that God speaks to us through two books. One is the little book, he says, the book of scripture, physically little. The other is the big book, the book of creation, vast as the Universe.”
In Celtic Spirituality, there is a “practice of listening for the living Word of God in nature as well as in scripture. This was the conviction of the ninth century philosopher John Scotus Eriugena, perhaps the greatest teacher the Celtic brand of the church ever produced. His name, a complicated one to the modern ear, simply means ‘John the Irishman from Ireland’. Eriugena taught that Christ moves among us in two shoes, as it were, one shoe being that of creation, the other that of scripture, and stressed the need to be as alert and attentive to Christ moving among us in creation as we are to the voice of Christ in scripture.”
“To know the creator, we need only look at the things he has created. The way to learn about God, Eriugena believed, is through the letters of Scripture and through the species of creation. He urges us to listen to these expressions of God and to conceive of their meaning in our soul.”
“The spirituality of the early Irish monks is well reflected in the words of St Columbanus:- “All of life, all of nature, pulsates with the life-force of creation, and there is nowhere where the Creator is not”.
“They were creationists – they saw the hand of God everywhere and in everything. They lived a life of stark simplicity, close to nature, with a deep consciousness of the immanence of the Creator in their daily lives.”
Art and nature has a way that “instills a sense of wonder and awe of the creator” not the artist but the divine artist that we are co-creators with. With the aid of the Holy Spirit, creativity, inspiration, and transformation can take place. This necessitates the change associated with having an encounter with the creator of creation. Many an artist is inspired by nature, and this connection surfaces as artist connect with the ultimate creator. The Divine artist who shaped and spoke and made the good and pleasing space that we appreciate and live in on a daily basis. We the artist are inspired and begin to co-create or more try to imitate or copy that which has been given to motivate, encourage, and inspire.
“We therefore respect nature and are committed to seeing it cared for and restored. We aim to be ecologically aware, to pray for God‘s creation all his creatures, and to stand against all that would seek to violate or destroy them. God has given human beings authority to you to look after the earth and all that lives upon it. Genesis 1:28. The term dominion in the text means authority to manage creation as God desires. God desires us to live in right relationship with the earth and all that lives upon it.”
This earth is our dwelling place, for this generation and the next. It is a beautiful gift given, let us not exploit this precious gift. “To harm the earth is to heap contempt on its Creator.” We need to nourish the earth as the earth nourishes us. There is this draw to go back to our primal instincts or roots to a simpler way of living, being attracted to country style living. The natural calendar offers the seasons, as a pattern of being sustainable, having a connection to nature, and having a connection with the seasons, and a desire to get back to nature and creation.
The seasons do relate well to the different seasons of our lives. We need to enter into the given seasons and it rhythm, having connection to the earth and creation/and earthiness. This being rooted in looking to our heritage and looking to following in the footsteps of the generations of people before us, our ancestry and genealogy. To have a curiosity and fascination with our family ties to the Celtic nation and what shaped the nations spirituality. These Celtic roots give us a sense of connection to the past to a better way of living, or maybe a simpler way. For some the ancient history is the draw or the attraction, looking to find identity and connection, bringing a sense of belonging that can bring a richness into our lives for today, and leaving a lasting impression.
If we are not contributing to the well-being of the earth, we are responsible for its demise and fall.
The Celtic Way is a journey – a path – a mindful way of walking gently on the earth.
As we walk out our individual dreams. May we be a means or an answer for what the world needs.
How we break the world!: Reflection by Mark Condy
How we Break the world!
We exploit, abuse, and consume, strip the earth to fill the void.
We strip the earth because of the inner ache, there is a gnawing in our being.
We need to give the earth a time of refreshing, we don’t allow this for our self.
Why would we give it to the earth.(write down in journal and reflect on these words, their meaning to you personally)
Allow rest and refreshing, resting in creation, being embraced by being in nature.
What we don’t give our self spiritually we don’t give to the created order, and to one another.
(write down in journal and reflect on these words, their meaning to you personally)
Does our heart ache for the lack of care and stewardship of the gift?
Do we have remorse for the way we exploit the earth!
We are asked to watch over the garden, it was given for our pleasure.
Will it be a blessing and pleasure for our children, and our children’s children?
This is only possible if we make a change and see to it that we care for and restore the damage we have done.
This begins with awareness of the small things we can do to make a difference.
What can we do?
- Contemplate the wonder of God in the trees and in the park, make a promise to yourself and the Lord to walk for 10 mins a day.
- Develop hobbies which emphasise creativity and the enjoyment of God’s creation, because creation magnifies the creator.
- Reflect on how to take care of creatures and creation write down ways you can care for God’s gift to us for a future generation.
“Wild goose, who is Holy Spirit of God, release my life. Free my shackled heart. Give me freedom to fly with you. To love and to live in such fullness that sky cannot be enough to hold me, nor the highest heavens be too far to reach. Eternal God of endless flight, may I rise with you into freedom, through the death and resurrection of Truth and Life, Love and Son. Give me a restored life, both with the Divine and with humanity. May I live in the freedom you offer, truly accepting it.” David Cole, Celtic Prayers and Practice.