Friday, May 22, 2009

Rami: Response To Mike's 5/19 Post

It's true that I like to think of myself as an individualist, but I admit that I belong to the individualist club and conform as much to the conditioning of that community as anyone else conforms to the conditioning of her or his own communities. And I agree that the journey of the alone to the Alone is never really travelled alone. In fact there is no alone for we are always in the community of the One.

The other day I was asked why the Hebrew name for God as Creator, Elohim, is written in the plural. It is clear that the name is meant to be understood as singular since all verbs and adjectives attached to it are in the singular, but this only begs the question, Why use the plural. My answer at that moment (all my answers are limited only to the moment in which they are given) was that the confusion of singular and plural points to the fact that the creativity that is God is plural, giving rise to many life forms, some lasting but moments, all of which are expressions of the One Divine Reality. God creates the community of living and dying, and we are residents of it.

I think the idea is less about being alone and more about not imitating others. We honor God when we are true to our own uniqueness. Otherwise we are denying God's creativity and rendering ourselves redundant. Just as each snowflake is unique yet all snowflakes are nothing but snow, so you and I and all living things are unique and yet nothing other than God.

I think walking is such a central term because the act of walking is intrinsically capable of awakening us to this truth and the reality of God in, with, and as all things. I have been leading walking meditation workshops both locally and across the country, and integrating walking meditation (using labyrinths wherever possible) into my other workshops. Walking with God, in God, and as God is the gift that such a practice offers us. And as we so walk we discover we never walk alone.

I appreciate your deepening of my understanding of the Prodigal Son parable. I have nothing to add. So let's walk on.

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