Hannah shows us the power of spiritual ‘argument’, a particular sort of argument, not ad hominim (against a person) as Screwtape would have us enter, but the argument that awakens and engages the reasoning that mystics and philosophers hold up as a standard, as a still point perpetually engaging and submitting to creative flux. One might imagine the “argument” as a gatekeeper, a gargoyle, or a firekeeper to the sweat lodge or house of worship where the heart enters the Sacred to be transformed. One might imagine it as Nietzsche’s lion chewing on the scales of the Thou Shalt dragon, transforming into a Child, the Original Face, the Innocent, the Crone who is “childlike” but no longer “childish”. Such an “argument” can serve as a doorway (not “the” doorway) to realizing the many named Mystery – our humanity, our Femininity, Love, Shakti, the Beloved, the Friend, Shams, the World to Come, spacious (non-dualistic) mind, Universal Mind, the Kingdom of God, the co-existing singular and plural, the Divine Marriage, the voice of God, Reality, Truth… to name but a few for what can never be known, seen, or possessed, only joined through our brokenness, emptiness, and the sincerity that rises from the gift of humility. Never still. Always moving and changing form yet always the same.
I listen and hear Hannah continuously moving out of the narrow straights of the three P’s – perfectionism, peer pressure and performance – into engagement with her Life, with her audience of One. I hear her moving forward and backward and forward again as she plants the “seeds” in the hearts of her audience through the spiral motion. I hear her describing many deaths that birthed her into Light, enabling her to birth Light with the One with the help of her midwives – an imperfect community whose laughter changes position and form as her heart changes position and form in relation to the Eternal …. now, able be untied to false agreements.
Birth into Light and birth with Light are the substance of Mystic poetry, art, music, theatre, comedy, and true science, emitting wonder and bliss with unsettling rumbles in our very core where new awareness is laboring at a hidden crossroad. There we may hear the voice of Reason shouting, “Experience is the mother of illusion!” (Kant) while Absolute Certainty returns with “There’s no room in the Inn!” (Luke 2:7). This argument, in its myriad forms and constant spiral motion is an unceasing spiritual movement making room for intimacy with the lost sacred Heart whose picture is engraved inside our own, where Form and Formless live side by side as Tagore writes about…
When I was born
and saw the light
I was no stranger
in this world
Appeared in the form
of my Mother.First Light by Tagore, translated by Deepak Chopra
“My struggle is not to escape the storm. My struggle is to find the eye of the storm as best I can.”
At the crossroad there is a storm much like the storm seen this day, April 19, 2022, as winter tests the new buds of spring with snow and freezing rain and as Ukraine continuously and fiercely rises with spring to deliver the new ethic, showing us where we are broken and where we are being made new.
Hannah says, “My struggle is not to escape the storm. My struggle is to find the eye of the storm as best I can.” She gorgeously describes the spiritual journey through the narrows, through the storm of contradictions toward the eye of the storm, the still point that lies in the center or heart of one’s unique labyrinth that is inextricably intertwined with the Universal Labyrinth. This is where the unimaginable happens and we connect to what is ‘bigger than all of us,’ to the All and the all. This is where the heart is transformed.
As she carefully prepared herself for public testimony, she brought with her a broken spirit, a spirit readied to die, to be ex-communicated by the world. The sword of God was lit, breaking the either/or dualistic frame and filling it with gold.
How is it that intentional walking through the narrows of our own narrative, emptying our self, sends us into a much unanticipated ‘reversal’ of expectation? Stretching us well beyond our small imagination? Rooting us deeper into our character, the virtues knitted into the deepest chambers of our hearts? Embodying our walk through the labyrinth of our soul with the One, the ground feeing more solid now? A faint whisper is heard…”I remember..” with a “Thank you, thank you, thank you” in Awe.
This journey to Awe is succinctly captured in another Tagore poem….
When we played together I never asked who you were.
You called me from sleep under my window
And you led the chosen from meadow to woods.
My life was so boisterous that I was afraid of you.
You were just my friend – I echoed your songs
And never asked what they meant.
Now playtime is over
And I’ve suddenly gone blind.
What is this?
Why has the world taken off its sandals
And dropped to its knees
As I bow my head under the silent stars?-A poem by Tagore, translated by Deepak Chopra “On the Shores of Eternity.”