Finding Sacred Spaces
By Rachelle Mee-Chapman on October 18, 2008
BlogHer Original Post
It's is pre-dawn and the light in my bedroom is dim and placid. The house is quiet and my computer hums warm on my lap. In this moment, this space, even in my messy room, feels sacred, holy, set apart from the buzz of the everyday.
Don't you just love it when that happens?
I adore sacred spaces -- those moments when the separation we so often perceive between the 'sacred' and the 'profane' fades and a unity occurs around us. So here is a collection of posts from writers who are very good at sniffing those moments out -- may their stories help you play "I Spy" and find the sacred space around you today.
Karen Maezen Miller at Cheerio Road, Zen master and finder of the everyday holy, describes her approach to holy space this way:
In Zen we have no holy, and the only place is where you are! The ultimate truth of our practice can be summarized as "Vast emptiness, no holiness." What is essential in this perspective is that if no place is holy, then every ordinary place is holy. The question is not "Where do I need to go to find holiness?" but rather "Can I find it where I am?"
Apparently, the answer is 'yes' and she writes about it here.
Further along the Zen-like track, Shari MacDonald Strong author of Zen and the Art of Child Maintenance at Literary Mama helps us remember how stepping away from our routines can bring new revelations about the scared nature of life, which she documents in this rare trip away from the children:
In this remote place with my husband, miles from the tantrums and the messes and the whining and the too-quickly-emptied cupboards, everything felt otherworldly.....In this place so far from home, food and drink took on the significance of sacraments: local red wines, pizza margherita, and Coke Light, drunk from tiny silver cans that looked like they should hold beer.
Rachel Barenblat at Velveteen Rabbi found sacred space when she landed in Assisi. I myself have recent been in love in Rome. Over in India, Elena Rego at Lunar Musings has had a dreamy experience at the Taj Mahal. And Jen Lemen gives us sacred snapshots in Rwanda.
But you don't have to travel far to find a thin spot. Perennial favorite Tess Marshal at Anchors and Masts has a lovely photo capturing the sacred season of apple blossom time. Elaine Eppler captures sacred moments every day by simply observing at Greens and Berries. (Both Tess and Elaine inspire me to think like this.) And Sandy Carlson at Writing in Faith has a nice post on one of my all time favorite sacred spaces -- the labyrinth. (Find one near you here.)
What is your sacred space? Where do you find thin spots on the map? What about holy moments in your everyday? Do you find them in the bathtub? At the table? With your dog? Comment below or leave us a link to your thoughts and images.
Rachelle Mee-Chapman is an alt-minister, mom, and writer blogging at Magpie Girl, and now at contributing at Food Hero and Minti Parenting. She'll send you helpful links and updates if you follower her on Twitter. Thanks for reading!
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