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December Meditation, 2010

I greet you, dearest ones, heading into the solstice time on the earth. Peri and I were speaking a couple days ago about the wonder of earth’s balance, as you in the southern hemisphere stretch open in the light, and we here rest in the darkness. We are so thankful for the well of silence that holds the challenges of change permeating our lives and enveloping our shared home. Surely 2011 will be the dance of surprising new creation and ceremonies of loss.

Earlier this year the Ashland Institute hosted a “concert” in which Maryliz Smith wove poetry and music. Recently she joined us in a Coming Into Your Own program, where we were carried on the gentleness of sound through the cycles of dissolution and transformation. I want to give you this season the gift of her touch.

This is one of the pieces from her concert. Maryliz’s primary instrument is the organ, but for this piece she moves to the piano, to accompany the cello. I understand what happened here between her and Ari Barnes as the subtle translation of the sounds of silence into delicate first form. When we took this piece off of her DVD of the whole concert we lost some volume and clarity, but it works. This piece will find its way into your heart as you find a quiet place to listen, and nestle into your own stillness, to meet it. It is 9 minutes long.

Blessings and love to you, and we will meet you in your chosen hours of silence,



Maryliz wanted to speak to you, too. So from her…

Spiegel im Spiegel or Mirrors within Mirrors was written by Estonian born composer, Arvo Part. He wrote this piece just prior to his departure from his homeland in 1978. Metaphorically, the infinite number of ways to mirror the same theme serves as a reminder of the infinite possibilities of creation teeming forth from an active silence. The experience is like being in a musical prism. Arvo Part is quoted as saying “I could compare my music to white light which contains all colors. Only a prism can divide the colors and make them appear; this prism could be the spirit of the listener.”

Playing with Ari Barnes is like being in this “zone” of white light. As the music slowly unfolds, the exquisite nature of being in the motion of its unfoldment is like grace showering us with serenity and beauty--all originating and being sculpted through the enveloping presence of silence.

May we bless this year for all we have learned,

For all we have loved and lost

And for the quiet way it has brought us

Nearer to our internal home.

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