We are beloved companions on a mystic journey, sharing our solitude and holding the world in the divine prayer of love.

"Place your mind before the mirror of eternity! Place your soul in the brilliance of glory. Place your heart in the figure of the divine substance. And transform your whole being into the image of the Godhead Itself through contemplation."
- from St. Clare's third letter to Blessed Agnes of Prague.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

La Morenita

Here is the Dark Lady of Tepeyac, Mother of the Americas, Our Lady of Guadalupe. Today we are remembering her and her servant, the hermit Juan Diego. It is a miracle-story of God's compassion for human poverty and need making itself known through the gentle understanding of the Mother of the Son of God, clothed with the sun. She appeared on a Mexican hill to Juan Diego and said, "Juanito, the humblest of my children, know and understand that I am the ever virgin Mary, Mother of the true God through whom all thing live."

 In Advent we contemplate not only our own poverty, but the poverty of God who became human through the act of emptying, of letting go, of descending into the dark heaviness of earth, matter, mother-womb. That the Divine out of which the universe came forth--every galaxy and shining star, every brilliant cloud of unformed matter, every quark and string--should take such fragile form, seeded in a woman's womb, born as an infant who is completely dependent upon us, who cannot speak or feed himself, who requires human love simply boggles the mind. It can only be received into the heart. And that reception requires that the heart be empty, too. This is poverty of spirit: emptiness, openness, receptiveness. As Mary was when she received the divine seed, as the infant of Bethlehem is, as was Juan Diego, as if we are blessed are we. Spacious with poverty. Open to receive. Then from our emptiness and poverty of spirit the Light will shine. In the words of Sirach 50:5-10 "How glorious he was, surrounded by the people, as he came out of the house of the curtain. Like the morning star among the clouds, like the full moon at the festal season; like the sun shining on the temple of the Most High, like the rainbow gleaming in splendid clouds; like roses in the days of first fruits, like lilies by a spring of water, like a green shoot on Lebanon on a summer day; like fire and incense in the censer, like a vessel of hammered gold studded with all kinds of precious stones; like an olive tree laden with fruit, and like a cypress towering in the clouds."

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