Monday, April 26, 2010

Love. Period.

From the Gospel appointed for the 5th Sunday of Easter:
"I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."
That's the deal. That's the 11th commandment the radical revisionist rabbi from Nazareth was making sure got "filed by title" before the clock ran out on his earthly ministry.

Love one another.

Not beat each other up with dogmas and doctrines. Not create creeds and covenants for use as weapons of mass coercion. Not turn the scriptural record of faith seeking understanding into a straight jacket of biblical literalism -- or use the tools I've given you to build walls rather than bridges.

Love one another.

And toward that end, here's a poem for what I've decided to call Love One Another Week. It's called "I Know The Way You Can Get" -- and it's what my rector -- Ed Bacon -- read at yesterday to our 50-something new members at the welcome-to-All Saints Church reception in the rectory garden. (From 'I Heard God Laughing - Renderings of Hafiz' Translated by Daniel Ladinsky)

I know the way you can get
When you have not had a drink of Love:

Your face hardens,
Your sweet muscles cramp.
Children become concerned
About a strange look that appears in your eyes
Which even begins to worry your own mirror
And nose.

Squirrels and birds sense your sadness
And call an important conference in a tall tree.
They decide which secret code to chant
To help your mind and soul.

Even angels fear that brand of madness
That arrays itself against the world
And throws sharp stones and spears into
The innocent
And into one's self.

O I know the way you can get
If you have not been drinking Love:

You might rip apart
Every sentence your friends and teachers say,
Looking for hidden clauses.

You might weigh every word on a scale
Like a dead fish.

You might pull out a ruler to measure
From every angle in your darkness

The beautiful dimensions of a heart you once

I know the way you can get
If you have not had a drink from Love's

That is why all the Great Ones speak of
The vital need
To keep remembering God,
So you will come to know and see Him
As being so Playful
And Wanting,
Just Wanting to help.

That is why Hafiz says:
Bring your cup near me.
For all I care about
Is quenching your thirst for freedom!

All a Sane man can ever care about
Is giving Love!


Like I said. Love. Period.

1 comment:

Lerewayah said...


This was my response to the GAFCON pronouncements, which I just learned about through a Walking with Integrity post (Anglican Covenant no longer enough for Global South.), but it seems to fit here, too:

In centering prayer, when we perceive a distraction, we use the chosen sacred word to gently redirect our attention. May I suggest as a sacred word, "Love one another"? We acknowledge in centering prayer that distractions are unavoidable, but we also know that the work of the Holy Spirit is not stopped by those distractions and when we return to the sacred word, we place ourselves in a position to receive the work of the Holy Spirit upon us. Amen.

Gretchen R. Chateau
Atlanta, GA