Posted January 12, 2014
Book: The Art of Pausing: Meditations for the Overworked and Overwhelmed
Authors: Judith Valante, Brother Paul Quenon, OCSO, Michael Bever
Acta Publications. Chicago, IL. 2014. Pp. 215
An Excerpt from the Introduction
Our hope is that you will use this book as a springboard for your personal pausing or for initiating a haiku exchange. The poems --- along with our reflections and the photographs by Brother Paul that accompany them --- will help you to uncover your own haiku moments. We hope they inspire you to "write a holy sentence everyday" in silence, for silence is the door to contemplation.
Each haiku presented here seeks to illuminate one of the 99 names of God referred to in sacred texts. For God, the Restorer; God the Compeller; God the Compassionate; God the Designer; God, the Determiner; God, the Subtle and Profound, is present in the world in those and other manifestations everywhere and every day. According to tradition, the 100th name of God cannot be known or spoken. Like some of the greatest haiku, it is pure mystery.
An Excerpt from the Book
God, The Loving
Green pastures beckon all day
Cloudless skies embrace
The American naturalist John Muir once took up residence inside a tree. He said he wanted to experience the tree. Is this craziness or is it love? Perhaps we can say a little of both: crazy love. This is one definition of love: to be so intertwined with and in tune with another that we intuit the other's wholeness.
The great mystic St. Francis of Assisi came to see in birds, plants and animals, his brothers and sisters. He understood that to discover the wholeness of something is also to uncover holiness.
John Muir recognized that to love profoundly is to be at one with the other and, in this way, to come to know the One. Or, as the Trappist Father Matthew Keley once said, "The love of God is not different from the love of self or the love of the whole of creation. If you have the one, you have it all."
Table of Contents:
Pauses written on our days
Poems, photographs and reflections on the 99 names of God
Suggestions for further reading