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What I've been thinking

If you came this way,

Taking any route, starting from anywhere,

At any time or at any season,

It would always be the same: you would have to put off

Sense and notion. You are not here to verify,

Instruct yourself, or inform curiosity

Or carry report. You are here to kneel

Where prayer has been valid. And prayer is more

Than an order of words, the conscious occupation

Of the praying mind, or the sound of the voice praying.

And what the dead had no speech for, when living,

They can tell you, being dead: the communication

Of the dead is tongued with fire beyond the language of the living.

From "Little Gidding" by T. S. Eliot

I've missed T. S. Eliot. Or more rightly, I hadn't realized I missed him until I came back to him. The more I read his poetry, the more seriously I consider it, and the less I seem to understand it, and the more lovely it becomes. I'm not sure I really have much to say about the poem, or this portion of the poem, but I think it's wonderful, and you should read it, and think about it.

I've been thinking a lot about what it means to be an individual human being before God. Being unreservedly yourself before God changes more how you are unreservedly yourself before other people, God already knows you.

What have you been "getting into" recently? (and I don't ask carelessly)

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3 comments:

JordanD.Gray said...

after reading this it makes me wana read more of your posts, hah honestly.

Art said...

The poem makes me think that seeking to experience God is not to carry back a tale or testimony as much as it is to meet him, be changed by him. To really listen to Him in his separateness, otherness.

"For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words."

Michael said...

Yes, Rebecca! Another thought that came to mind is that it's absurd (or irreverent) to say to yourself "We'll see if this God is real, see if he holds up." You can't come to God by verifying that he exists, or inform yourself he's there, you have to come to him by kneeling.

"For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words."

*deep sigh* (I'm even quite sure how to describe that one.)