One of the required components of our blog is to furnish pictures to go with our posts. Sometimes I have the photos in mind when I write my post and sometimes, I go looking for some of my photos that might enhance my post. Capturing images is an intimate engagement with the external world for me. I bought my first digital camera not because I was interested in photography but because I was curious about how I saw beauty.
This afternoon I am getting ready for our Thursday choir practice. This happens in every Benedictine monastery because it takes practice to chant the psalms and canticles in our Book of Praise twice each day. We practice chanting in one voice--no voice standing out louder than others or sounding very different from the rest. St. Benedict wrote in the Rule that our hearts are to be in harmony with our voices. Sometimes our community can chant so heavenly.
From the I Ching… It is only when we have the courage to face things exactly as they are, without any self-deception or illusion, that a light will develop out of events by which the path to success may be recognized. This could also perhaps be described as the path to knowing ourselves. Not an easy path.
St. Benedict tells us in The Rule that we begin again each day. You may wonder what nuns and monks do in the monastery every day? St. Benedict answered this question many centuries ago: We fall and get up, fall and get up, always. This New Year is a gift, a new opportunity, to begin again, anew, to stand up again. With new hopes, new challenges, new opportunities, to begin again fresh.