In the ancient days
when the Earth was Mother of Life,
there was balance visible everywhere --
this balance ruled the affairs of the human community
as the seasons ruled the lives of all the creatures...
The ancients knew the virtue of patience --
anxiety never hastened the time of the rising sun.
The ancients knew the virtue of honesty --
a lie could never heal someone who was hurt.
The ancients knew the virtue of hospitality --
and so were always prepared to share
with a stranger, a neighbor, or a god.
The ancients knew the virtue of kindness --
and so could welcome their days with anticipation.
The ancients knew the virtue of conversation --
listening deeply to the dreams, fears, and stories
of family, friends, neighbors, and strangers
they arrived at the core of community
and could welcome everyone home.
The way of the simpleton
is the steady practice of the five virtues --
and so she arrives one day, quite unexpectedly,
at the door of the Infinite...
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.