Creating drama has become boring...

Today was a sweet day: wonderful and soulful worship, excellent music, stunning weather and then a chance for a few beers with a colleague I love, respect and trust. What's NOT to celebrate, yes?

As this weekend has unfolded - and as I looked forward to my daughter's wedding on Saturday and then Pentecost in church - I was struck by something that drives some people nuts and is encouraged by others: it takes me a LONG time to come to a decision about weighty matters. I am not into the hurry up and act school of operations. What's more, I am increasingly uncomfortable with "taking sides" in a host of justice matters, too. Mostly, I think, because I ache for common ground.  Yes, Bonhoeffer was right that there are times when we must choose to stand with the most bereft and take whatever comes in solidarity. But most of the time, the polarization that is pushed on us springs from a false urgency born of self-importance. Fr. Richard Rohr gets it right here:

Life is much more spacious in the second half of life, the boundaries of the container having been enlarged by the constant addition of new experiences and relationships. Now you are just here, and here holds more than enough.

If we know anything at this stage, we know that we are all in this together and that we are all equally naked underneath our clothes. When you are young, you define yourself by differentiating yourself; now you look for the things that we all share in common. You find happiness in alikeness, which has become much more obvious to you now; and you do not need to dwell on the differences between people or exaggerate the problems. Creating dramas has become boring.

In the second half of life, it is good just to be a part of the general dance. We do not have to stand out, make defining moves, or be better than anyone else on the dance floor. Life is more participatory than assertive and there is no need for strong or further self-definition. God has taken care of all that, much better than we ever expected. The brightness comes from within now, and it is usually more than enough.

No, what I have found over the years is that a non-dualistic and contemplative spirit is essential if people are to move beyond blame and shame and fear. So, as this sweet day comes to a close, let me simply return thanks for all that is and all that shall be.


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