Friday, March 14, 2008

Lenten Post March 14th

I've mentioned before that among the Christian mystics, Hildegard of Bingen is one of my favorites. Hildegard understood that all creation is God's work and that we should rejoice and marvel in the glory of God's creation.

She wrote:
And it is written: The Spirit of the Lord fills the Earth". This means that no creature, whether visible or invisible, lacks a spiritual life....The clouds too have their course to run. The moon and stars flame in fire. The trees shoot forth buds because of the power in their seeds. Water has a delicacy and a lightness of motion like the wind. This is why it springs up from the Earth and pours itself into running brooks. Even the Earth has moisture and mist.
All creatures have something visible and invisible.
No tree blossoms without greening power, no stone is without moisture; no creature is without its own power.

Caring for the living and delicate earth became a sacred trust for Hildegard. This sacred trust eminates from a vision she had. In the vision God said to her:

I am the supreme and fiery force who kindled every living spark, and I breathed forth no deadly thing - yet I permit them to be. As I circle the whirling sphere with my upper wings - that is with wisdom - rightly I ordained it. Am I am fiery life of the essence of God: I flame above the beauty of the fields; I shine in the waters; I burn in the sun, the moon, and the stars. And, with the airy wind, I quicken all things vitally by an unseen, all-sustaining life. For the air is alive in the verdure and the flowers; the waters flow as isf they lived; the sun too lives in its light; and when the moon wanes it is rekindled by the light of the sun, as if it lived anew. Even the stars glistened in their light as if alive..
I flame above the beauty of the fields to signify the earth - the matter from which God made man. I shine in the waters to indicate the soul, for, as water suffeses the whole earth, the soul pervades the whole body. I burn in the sun and the moon to denote reason, and the stars are the innumerable words of reason.

May you be given the grace to cherish the earth and to always marvel at the glory of God's Creation.


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