We have arrived at our farm after a four weeks “pilgrimage” in Spain, it is good to be back and it was good to be there. We are thankful of the opportunity that has been given to us.
One thing that impressed my mind during our stay was the Monastery of Montserrat, it has various legends attached to it, one of them claiming the Holy Grail was hidden there after rescuing it from Mont-Salvat.
To enter the church at 11 am you cross a big patio full of marble and columns while the numerous bells are calling to service. The sound is such that makes you shudder, it calls you inward, it shakes your thoughts and heart. Inside also, the esthetics can heighten your experience of God, but for me, it was the light coming from the eastern windows that made the most difference. The churches were always built facing east, but even more than that, the windows were designed so the light of the morning sun would enter and the light would shine, passing through each one of the faithful gathered there, as it moved in the firmament during the service. It was really awesome, how you felt the lighting, warm, sometimes blinding touch of the light as you collect your mind to remember of the things divine and infinite.
This experience full of content and form helps to carry your soul through the week ahead, or if you are lucky to have this daily, to the day ahead. Is this combination of form and content that conforms to the truth, you take one away and the truth also escapes.
It is the same with the question that burrowed in my life this Christmas, how you walk a Christian life, how you follow the teachings if your heart is not in it? Some times I thought it was good to follow your conscience and rules, even of you do not feel like it, they say the willing, in due time, will educate the feeling aspect, so I even took notes in my mind of what I ought to do to be good Christian and my thoughts forced my will. Even if my heart was not in it.
Other times I thought that is through feeling that this is accomplished better, and I trained my thoughts to go into the feeling realm and thus also create strong will that work into the material world. This would be one of the goals of the Jesuit meditations.
Yet I wonder if both approaches could be lacking something, because in my latest experiences it is FROM the feeling that willing and thought life are to be changed in a Christian walk. It is from my acknowledging that I fall short of thinking in the right way, it is from my acknowledging that I fall short in acting the right way, that perhaps God will listen to my plea and change my heart, so my thoughts and actions follow thereafter.
This is a very narrow path, because daily we encounter these situations, if we are honest and inwardly attentive, there are many times a day when you are faced with this reality, we do not do what is right, we do not think what is right. And the advancement comes if we submit to these failings in a pleading attitude to God, instead of trying to fix it our own way, either doing what is right out of thought, or doing what is right out of trained will. I think this is also the difference between working as a Pharisee or working as a contrite sinner. The ones harbor hardness of heart, the other is a pliable heart.
The homeschool group is going to rehearse the Sound of Music, a very interesting musical too, for pondering about God’s ways, which are always a mystery and a joy.
On the other hand we are trying to compile a list of good classic books for reading, some of our favorites are:
Little House of the prairie
Chronicles of Narnia
Leo Tolstoy stories
Von Trapp family singers
Grimm’s complete fairy tales
Andersen fairy Tales
Don Quijote de la Mancha
The 1000 and one nights
In regards of handworking, we found these little shepherd’s capes, which are made of wool and are tight to the chest. I find fascinating how in the older times people wore very loose clothes and nowadays people, specially modern people, wear very tight clothes. I think part of it is because it gives the body a sensation of touch, people are more drawn out of their physical bodies nowadays, and they find comfort in clothes that bring the awareness back to their skin, their etheric back to the former limits. (that is also a reason why people should be drinking wine in the old times but not nowadays, they are already far out and the wine effects hinder the processes instead of enhancing them). Nonetheless we are children on these epoch, and I think me and my children would benefit from having one garment that is wool and tight at the chest area, which is also the heart. We are planning on knitting some more of these capes for friends and others, as a therapeutic aide.
Finally, after nine months of being at our farm, we found out that it has a different name, just like in a pregnancy, you look through child names, and at birth you are reassured of which one is the right one, so it is for us now, the farm has spoken its own name and it is Wind’s Way Farm. You can see the development of the project at http://windswayfarm.blogspot.com
My husband is preparing his second novel, titled “The Way of the Wind”, and it wants to be a metaphor of a life walking with the Spirit of God. I am also preparing for the illustrations for the first book of “The Village Children”, this time I will use charcoal and watercolors together.
So it is with all this plans in our pockets that we wish you all a good year and Epiphany, may we bring our best gifts to give, may God turn our plans around if it is His will, may we be ready to listen to His voice.
Songs for Epiphany: Past Three o’clock, Good King Wenceslas, We Three Kings of Orient Are
Story for Epiphany: Babushka and The Three Wise Men ( look for the version that has no moral or judgement passed explicitly)