Maurice Zundel – face à la faute

“[Face à la faute, la notre ou celle des autres] inutile de rester en soi et d’obliger les autres, en les confondant et en les humiliant, à se retrancher dans leur amour-propre. Il n’y a qu’une seule chose à faire : ouvrir l’espace, laisser entrer la lumière, ouvrir les volets de son âme pour que le soleil de Dieu y entre et retrouve avec bonheur cet amour qui n’a jamais cessé d’être en nous et de nous attendre. C’est là l’humilité.”

Maurice Zundel, théologien suisse (1897-1975) -Extrait de “Silence, parole de vie.”

Dust

Think and analyze with parsimony.
“Why?” has no answer.
Remain silent.
Grace is everywhere.
In the slow rise of the moon, no matter where you are.
In a blade of grass, in the tenderness of your gestures, in your daily bread.
No need to worry — from dust you rose, dust you shall be.
Grace is not fussy.

Kenza.

Accompanying music: “Song of the universal” by Ola Gjeilo, listen here

Inspiration: “Remember you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” – Ash Wednesday, reminding us to be humble and joyful, always joyful. 

Ryōkan’s hut

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Often, I think I am in Ryōkan’s hut.
The sky is framed by the window,
birds come on the window sill chirping away
enthralled by the morning glory overflowing its small pot.
Cars pass intermittently in a muffled sound.
Rain falls gently on the roof
and I pretend it is thatched.
I sit like he did.
I push aside the woes of the world,
my mind at peace.
You may understand, you may not,
and that is fine.
As Ryōkan wrote,
“Who can indeed content himself with this manner of life,
Unless he has seen himself altogether lost in the world.”

Kenza.


– Quote from one of Ryōkan’s (Japan, 1758-1831) Chinese poems.
Art: self-portrait by Ryōkan. 

Peace

These days, peace has a general definition based on a negative. Take anyone at random and ask what peace is, and they will tell you that it is the absence of war, the opposite of strife.

Peace is thus seen as something beyond us, something that has to do with the “grand scheme of things” rather than our everyday life.

This understanding influences greatly how we think, how we speak and how we act.

I find that increasingly, people become annoyed and too often resort to agressiveness as their first reaction when faced with something they dislike —be it being stuck in traffic, waiting in line, not getting an immediate answer to a message, or anything that goes against what they had expected.

The reaction can go from cursing internally (I personally see that as self-inflicted harm) and blaming others, to straight out shouting.

A mix in various degrees of (1) impatience; (2) an exaggerated sense of self, in other words a lack of humility; and (3) the idea that living means imposing oneself on the world, are some of the causes that lead to such reactions.

Where am I heading with this you may ask?

I am heading towards peace. Yes, peace, salam, shalom, paz, мир(mir)—say it in whatever language you chose.

Peace is the ability to react in a gentle way to any situation, be it annoying or not.

Peace is not the ability to control or eliminate anything, be it anger or impatience or war.

Peace is not a state of mind.

Peace itself is an act.

Peace is positive and purposeful.

Peace is humility. It is patience and it is kindness.

Peace is filled with the potential for love and is itself a product of love.

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.” John 14:27.

Kenza.

Caveat: in some parts of the world I had the privilege to visit or to live, agressiveness, even in its mildest form, was very rare and politeness, and hence respect, generally prevailed. 

Inspiration: peace, and the persistent inability to understand much of the world.