Thursday, 5 November 2015


Angels of the Creation of Days by Sir Edward Burne Jones

" The more materialistic science becomes, the more I shall paint angels: their wings are my protest in favour of the immortality of the soul."

                                                                                 Sir Edward Burne Jones

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

The Canticle of the Sun

Most High, all-powerful, all good Lord, all praise is yours, all glory, honour and blessings.
To you alone, Most High, do they belong; no mortal lips are worthy to pronounce your name.

We praise you, Lord, for all your creatures, especially for Brother Sun, who is the day through whom you give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour, of you Most High, he bears your likeness.

We praise you, Lord, for Sister Moon and the stars, in the heavens you have made them bright, precious and fair.

We praise you, Lord, for Brothers Wind and Air, fair and stormy, all weather's moods, by which you cherish all that you have made.

We praise you, Lord, for Sister Water, so useful, humble, precious and pure.

We praise you., Lord, for Brother Fire, through whom you light the night.
He is beautiful, playful, robust and strong.

We praise you, Lord, for Sister Earth, who sustains us with her fruits, coloured flowers, and herbs.

We praise and bless you, Lord, and give you thanks, and serve you in all humility.

                                              Extract from the Canticle of the Sun, by Saint Francis of Assisi.

" Never have we so hurt and mistreated our common home as we have in the last two hundred years."
Laudato Si' #53

" Yet all is not lost.  Human beings, while capable of the worst, are also capable of rising above themselves, choosing again what is good, and making a new start."
Laudato Si' #205

Let us sing as we go.  May our struggles and our concern for this planet never take away the joy of our hope."
Laudato Si' #244

                               Extracts from Pope Francis' Encyclical "Laudato Si' "

Monday, 10 August 2015

Behold a Tree

     Watercolour by Margaret M Brownlow

Behold a tree.  Outwardly it has a hard and rough shell, appearing dead and encrusted, but the body of the tree has a living power, which breaks through the hard and dry bark and generates many young bodies, branches and leaves, which, however, all are rooted in the body of the tree.
Thus it is with the whole house of this world, wherein the holy light of God appears to have died out, because it has withdrawn and seems dead.  But love ever again and again breaks through this very house of death and generates holy and celestial branches in this great tree, and which root in the light.

                                         Jakob Bohme (1575 - 1624)  German Christian mystic and theologian.

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

To All I Leave

Nothing to give, nothing to leave but life,
Nothing to take, nothing to grasp but eternity.
Material possessions have I non
But a body of skin and bone.
In the vast mountains of my mind, ranging high,
In the deep caverns of my heart, reaching far,
Spiritual possessions have I many
And a soul for the future, ready.

To all I leave the seasons changes
And the ever changing beauty each season brings,
The ocean depths, the mountain ranges,
Each beast, each creature, each bird that wings
Away across earth's beloved surface
To soar to heaven, to greet the eternal.
Stars on courses mapped out in space,
Planets revolving around the sun infernal.
Moon's cool gleam at deep of night,
A beacon for nocturnal creatures.
The grace to accept the gift of sight
And possess all that nature teaches.

For all I ask both real and inner peace,
The sublimation of baser human traits,
Violence, robbery, libel, all to cease,
To civilise man; an acceptance of fates
Decrees and service to all others,
So to receive continued grace.
Seek not the gold that smothers
As foul hands upon a face.
Pollute not youth's happy, carefree years
But rather cleanse the heart of sin,
Of bitter, disillusioned tears,
Bequeathing spiritual peace within.


Wednesday, 15 July 2015

The Sower

Bharadvaja, a wealthy Brahman farmer, was celebrating his harvest-thanksgiving when the Blessed One came with his alms-bowl, begging for food.

Some of the people paid him reverence, but the Brahman was angry and said: "O samana, it would be more fitting for thee to go to work than to beg.  I plough and sow, and having ploughed and sown, I eat.  If thou didst likewise, thou too, wouldst have something to eat."

The Tathagata, answered him and said: "O Brahman, I,too, plough and sow, and having ploughed and sown, I eat."

"Dost thou profess to be a husbandman?" replied the Brahman.  "Where then are thy bullocks?  Where is the seed and the plough?"

The Blessed One said: "Faith is the seed I sow: good works are the rain that fertilizes it; wisdom and modesty are the plough; my mind is the guiding-rein; I lay hold of the handle of the law; earnestness is the goad I use, and exertion is my draught-ox.  This ploughing is ploughed to destroy the weeds of illusion.  The harvest it yields is the immortal fruit of Nirvana, and thus all sorrow ends."

Then the Brahman poured rice-milk into a golden bowl and offered it to the Blessed One, saying: "Let the teacher of mankind partake of the rice-milk, for the venerable Gotama ploughs a ploughing that bears the fruit of immortality."

                                                                           Taken from the Gospel of the Buddha.

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Meander 6

The pain of grief is just as much a part of life as the joy of love,
it is perhaps the price we pay for love, the cost of commitment.

        John Bolam, March 1989.  Essay on bereavement, final sentence.


One only sees clearly with the heart.
What is essential is invisible to the eyes.

                                         Atoinne de Saint Exupery


Hide not your talents.  They for use were made.
What's a sundial in the shade.

                                        Benjamin Franklin


Dependence on the Holy Spirit is sometimes made an excuse for doing no homework before speaking, but the Holy Spirit cannot, of course, work on nothing.
It is the well-stored disciplined mind that is the vehicle of the Spirit.

                                         Denis Duncan


The distances between us, so vast and so close, are so easily bridged
not by what we make but by what we feel.

           from 'Worlds Apart'  'The Outer Limits' series BBC2 , 24th.March 1997


What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the Master calls a butterfly.

In order to live free and happily, you must sacrifice boredom.
It is not always an easy sacrifice.

                                                           Richard Bach

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Seeking Truth

Whoever sincerely seeks truth with an open heart will find it revealed in the Master.

We do not need knowledge of Hebrew or Greek, but we do need to be united with the Spirit.
This Spirit guided the prophets and followers who recorded His words, and this Spirit alone can reveal their true meaning to us.

The language of the Master is spiritual, and we can only understand its meaning if we are awake in spirit.  We do not need to know or understand anything about theological questions or criticisms.
Indeed a child can most readily grasp the Master's teaching, for the child is still united with the spiritual world from which it came.  But those who possess wisdom that is only of this world can never understand, for the Master's spirit is not in them.

                                                                                                  Sundar Singh (1889-1929)