Monday, November 16, 2009

All About Dying

When I went to my Sycamore tree to journal Sunday afternoon, waiting for me on the swing was a leaf that looked like a magic carpet. I had forgotten how big the leaves of Sycamore trees are. I sat down and held it in my hand for a long time. The leaf took my breath away in its dying beauty and all I could do was sit and behold the season of autumn. I saved my journaling for later and simply entered the experience of being in and with this drama of life and death.

I have always loved this season best even if everything around me seems to be dying. When I sit ankle deep in leaves I feel like I am in a tomb that is also a womb. Sacred Compost! The other side of dying always seems like life to me even when I have to look through the dying with tears in my eyes. Autumn calls me to stop clinging, to loosen my grasp on what I think I know and embrace the beautiful unknown.
Autumn is the Season of Mystery.

Like trees stripped bare I cry out with autumn sadness,
“How can I give shade with so much gone? My question answers itself as I experience the great mystery rising up in the heart of me. With the trappings gone it is easier to see the truth of who I really am. All I have is my poverty and God’s grace and the mysterious truth is: That’s enough!
It is enough for me to be poor in God’s hands. The shade I give is God’s shade, not merely my own. This is the season of transformation. We are called into the prayer of centering. Let us return to the center. We let go of everything that is not God. In the words of Meister Eckhart I pray,




I put the sycamore leaf
down on the holy ground. I do not even carry it inside to my personal altar. I let the altar of the earth have it.


  1. Oh my gosh, the prayer of Meister Eckhart leaves me breathless and without words. Surely it is the Holy One whispering, reaching out to us. As ever, I'm so appreciative of your words. I too resonate with the season of Autumn, which is rather ironic. All around us are the reminders of death, the falling leaves, the longer, darker days, the cold of the tomb. And yet, and yet, as I withdraw from the faster pace of Summer, I know that after the death will come new life once more. And so, I settle into the quiet, for it portends the newness to come. Blessings, Mary

  2. Such imagery ! Thank you for sharing this today. In just 3 days I will be in the Ozarks and be able to take in a similar experience in person.

  3. I also appreciate the words of Meister Eckhart. Recently, I heard a monk give a talk on clinging and its sibling, aversion (clinging standing on its head). He said pure consciousness, our true nature, is neither clinging nor aversion. When we have the clinging and aversion we cannot give ourselves fully to the present moment, nor be love which is undivided. God alone.