tell me by what you do...

Not long ago I was smitten by Krista Tippett's interview with Padraig O'Tuama on the radio show ON BEING. (For more information, please go to: http://www.padraigotuama. com) Maybe it was because we were driving home from Brooklyn after the blessed news of Louie's recovery from 
meningitis was confirmed - and he was going home. It might have had something to do with my affinity for spiritual leaders who help bridge the gaps between people in conflict; O'Tuama's work with Corrymela in Belfast in one such blessing in a world too torn apart. And it might actually be grounded in O'Tuama's gift for gab: he is, after all, a Celtic poet with a love for nuance. He knows that sound and meaning can dance around together and bring to birth new possibilities. I am still not certain why it all came together for me that afternoon, but I am still smitten. Take, for example, this poem:

Affirmative Action

In the Irish language, there is not a word for ‘yes’. There is
not a word for ‘no’ either.

You can only answer in the affirmative – you can say ‘I
will’, or ‘I won’t’. You can say ‘I can’. You can say ‘I am’
or ‘I am not.

It is appropriate that a language so poetic as to suggest
a bridge between the world for exile and the word for
weeping would be rooted in an earthy solidity that requires
answers to be linked to an action. Affirmative answers are
indicated by action.

Let your yes be yes and your no be no.

Let your yes be seen in your doing.

Let your no be not-doing.

If you say yes, but do-not-do, it is a no.

So, forget all your talk.

Tell me by what you do.

Doesn't this ring true? Now is the time for those of us of faith to simply let go of the BS and tell one another what is most important by what we do.
Earlier this afternoon, O'Tuana got to me again when he wrote:

The call (of the sacred) is to go beyond (obligation)... "I pray God rid me of God" Peter Rollins is fond of quoting, and he's right. Our ideas of God sometimes get in the way of the truth that we are already acting upon, and God is the excuse that hides the lie. The deepest impulse of religion is to move from obligation to something entirely more intuitive - the telling of truth, the doing of truth, the living of a life, the confrontation of what we truly want.


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