“We will go into the future as a single sacred community, or we will all perish in the desert.”
— Thomas Berry
Last week our country reeled from the 100,000th death from COVID-19 and then a police officer in Minneapolis killed George Floyd, suffocating him to death with his knee while Floyd lay handcuffed, face down. This murder has awakened protests throughout our cities because it was captured on video. The murder makes graphic and painfully visible the mistreatment of African-Americans in 400 years of history of the United States of America, since they were kidnapped from Africa and enslaved to make fortunes for southern plantation owners. Meanwhile, our planet continues to heat into dangerous levels, bringing more cataclysmic storms, droughts, floods and a changing climate. dangerous future.
These are difficult times in which we live, and for that reason, I believe we are all called to awaken. Planet Earth and the people of the Earth need all of us now. Some suggest that we humans are Creation’s pinnacle, created in the image of God. I believe we hold the intelligence to lead our species into healing the planet, our institutions and our relationships, but we must awaken to this urgency. We must summon all of our abilities as the miraculous beings we are and work together.
My new book Awakening: A Contemplative Primer on Learning to Sit offers a path into the future for all of us. In a time when we don’t have the answers, we need spiritual focus to connect with God and to find solutions, together. This book assists the reader and groups to access contemplative practices, opening into the space of infinite possibility close to the Heart of God. Meditation, Labyrinth Walking, Sacred Conversation, Lectio Divina with Scripture and Nature, Gratitude, Contemplative Living, Contemplative Ritual and Contemplative Action are all paths to the place where we find transformative love. I believe in these spaces, we each we will find our calls to move out into the world with constructive action.
As we awaken, we will have clarity to begin what Thomas Berry calls our “Great Work.” We must change our relationship with the Earth and work to preserve life here. The Earth will survive, humans may not.
As we awaken, we will find a path to create a more just society where all people are treated with dignity and respect.
As we awaken, we will find a way to cultivate peace within ourselves and to awaken to the incredible gift of life that is ours. We will develop a deeper sense of love for people and the environment of Earth and its living creatures and plants. This fragile ecosystem holds us all, and we who have the intelligence and ability, must begin to care for it to lead us into a sustainable future.
I encourage you to read my new book and consider the ways that you are being called to awaken into your life to help create a sustainable future for us all. Don’t we owe it to our Creator and the future of our species, to awaken and put all of our intelligence, resources and energy into moving into a new relationship with our Earth and one another, a sustainable plan for the future?
Nancy Flinchbaugh 6/5/20