Daily life: is it really life at all? When considering the reality of most (?) people, isn't the so-called "mundane" the drag, not the ecstasy, of life? If our life is not marked by bliss, why not? If the daily is always a struggle, what do we need to change our seeming destiny?
A few years ago, it seemed that one would hear "been there done that" applied to nearly everything and said constantly. So when I consider the theme of daily life being a source of ecstasy, I fully understand that for much of my life, ecstasy was nowhere near my definition of life and living... and in the deepest throes of despair I muttered -- not expecting an answer -- this simple prayer-plea: "God, I need a miracle!" That plea was immediately followed by "God, I just want to love!" And then the strangest thing ever happened: it was as if the Holy One said, "Me too!"
Absolutely nothing is easy: but much of the "battle" can only be fought if we commit to "engage the forces that are keeping us from our bliss"! Most of those "forces" exist only, or primarily, in our mind: so changing our thinking patterns is a must: most of us become habituated to the patterns that dominate our thinking: we've got to let go of those patterns and habits. Of course, this is easier said than done, but whenever we become aware of our negative thoughts, we can jump into some glorious affirmation: like, "I am loving , strong, and capable!" For most of my life, I was made to feel small, bad, and ugly: convinced of those truths, it was a slog to change my mind: why do you think the woman's voice in the Song of Songs begins with, "I am dark, but beautiful"? She was told and treated -- by the people who were supposed to love her -- as "dark": small, bad, and ugly... To find and embrace her possibilities and her love, she had to begin to change her mind: she became: "What are you running from me for? I am so beautiful!"
All of the places in which we have been hurt, perhaps even broken, those are the very places in which the Divine Light can both enter and then shine, in and through us. The ecstasy which is possible begins and ends with our identification with Love: with all that is true, good, noble, and kind: for this we have each come into existence: for this we have each been summoned from nothingness into the wonder of "being human"... Oh, perhaps you are wondering about the Icon I chose to illuminate these words? In my thinking, Mary was the one praying "I need a miracle" and "I just want to love"... and the Holy One heard her cry and answered (as the Divine always does) "Me too!" And Yeshua clinging to Mary's breast and later preaching in the fields, weren't his words all about "Look! I give you a miracle! Love one another as I have loved you!" And, of course, our everyday ecstasy is now attuned to that One Love, so we say and do in every way possible, "Me too!"
Robert Daniel Smith was privileged to serve the homeless and marginalized for 30 years in Salinas, California. Together with his wife, Michelle, they founded an intentional community called the 'Companions of the Way', also in Salinas. Robert and Michelle are community organizers, Catholic Worker renegades, sacred activists, writers, poets, artists, Divine Mother devotees, and practitioners of Kriya Yoga as taught by Rev. Ellen Grace O'Brian of the Center for Spiritual Enlightenment. Michelle is also a Montessori public school teacher. Robert is also an ordained Interfaith Minister.