The Wind – Breath of the Divine

"No feather bourn hither and thither upon the wind moves with such grace and freedom as do they who allow themselves to be carried by God without resisting.” (Spiritual Canticle: Nicolas Barre). Recently, as I was walking along a country road, a brisk wind swept up the dead leaves causing them to rustle and fly in all directions. This drew my attention to the wind. I couldn’t but appreciate its freedom, vitality and spontaneity that transformed everything it touched, without discrimination. As I looked around me, I saw its effects on the countryside. Smoke curled from the chimneys, bushes shook, branches swayed, dull scentless plants raised their heads with pride, cables chimed, wings fluttered and moving clouds scattered the mist. I sat on a rock and allowed this vibrant wind take possession of me. It was an exhilarating experience to feel the stirrings of the imagination, and the longings of the heart, and, be able to tap into memories and lives of loved ones, who had now passed on, and ‘hear’ what they had to say. As the clay was swept along, I was reminded of the moment of creation when the Divine breathed ‘soul’ into dust thus filling the universe with His energy and life-force. I thought of the Spirit (Ruach – Hebrew) breathing life into "dry bones”, (Ez. 37) showing that the Divine can be present in the most appalling of places. I was filled with hope at the thought of the innovative people who were trying to bring about change in places that were marked by conflict and suffering. I became more aware that if I desire change and a new direction in my own life, it is the Spirit, with its characteristic to ‘blow where it pleases’, (Jn.3:8) that would unlock my fetters and help me to join in the dance of life rather than be an observer. As I sat there, I tried to capture the intuitions that go with its whisperings, and inhale its refreshing spirit, while exhaling approaches that no longer served in the community. "Love, joy, peace, patience….” (Gal 22 – 23) are gifts of the Spirit that cross all boundaries and leave no room for exclusion. Like the monks of old, there is still time, no matter how old we are, to hoist our sails to catch the gust of the Spirit that will help us be catalysts in our world in need of transformation.. "Great Spirit Whose voice we hear in the wind and whose breath gives life to all the world, hear us!  We are small and weak, we need your strength and Wisdom” (Native American Prayer) Catherine O'Sullivan IJS, Coolea

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