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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

287: We cannot discover new oceans unless we have the courage to lose sight of the shore.

Day 287: December 28th 2020:

We cannot discover new oceans unless we have the courage to lose sight of the shore.

Last night Victoria provided us insight into the world of the Fertile void -- that place of suspense where we're risking through space on our own momentum.

Something deep in the human soul awakens as things fall apart"

I think of the Covid Pandemic, all of 2020, the political divide in America, health challenges, the passing of our friends and companions...). "Something in the soul knows that every thing in this world can become lost. And something in the soul knows how to survive periods of devastation, disorientation and loss. Descent and falling is the way of the soul from its beginning. We each fell from the womb of life when the waters of the inner sea broke and it came time for us to breathe on our own.” - Michael Meade

Victoria provided us a pathway. "What is needed from all of us to have this birth to honor the “Fertile void,” composed of these 3 things:

• to let go of the familiar present

• to trust the momentum of life moving forward

• to risk the unsupported moment

Like the Wise Men of Old, and all Wise People today, we are invited to be observant and alert to the signs of our times right now; to let go, to trust and to risk reaching for the new births on their way...this is good news...great joy! "

The Fertile void is the existential metaphor for giving up the familiar supports of the present and trusting the momentum of life to produce new opportunities and vistas.

The Acrobat who swings from one trapeze to the next knows exactly when she must let go. She gauges his release exquisitely and for a moment he has nothing going for him but his own momentum. Our hearts follow her arc and we love her for risking the unsupported moment.

Every once in a while as I'm merrily (or even not-so-merrily) swinging along, I look out ahead of me into the distance and what do I see? I see another trapeze bar swinging toward me. It's empty and I know, in that place in me that knows, that this new trapeze bar has my name on it. It is my next step, my growth, my aliveness coming to get me. In my heart of hearts I know that, for me to grow, I must release my grip on this present, well-known bar and move to the new one.

Each time it happens to me I hope (no, I pray) that I won't have to let go of my old bar completely before I grab the new one. But in my knowing place, I know that I must totally release my grasp on my old bar and, for some moment in time, I must hurtle across space before I can grab onto the new bar.

Each time, I am filled with terror. It doesn't matter that in all my previous hurtles across the void of unknowing I have always made it. I am each time afraid that I will miss it. Perhaps this is the essence of what the mystics call the faith experience. No guarantees, no net, no insurance policy, but you do it anyway because somehow to keep hanging on to that old bar is no longer on the list of alternatives. So, for an eternity that can last a microsecond or a thousand lifetimes, I soar across the dark void of "the past is gone, the future is not yet here."

It's called "transition." I have come to believe that this transition is the only place that real change occurs.

Yes, with all the pain and fear and feelings of being out of control that can (but not necessarily) accompany transitions, they are still the most alive, most growth-filled, passionate, expansive moments in our lives.

We cannot discover new oceans unless we have the courage to lose sight of the shore. - Anonymous

Transforming our need to grab that new bar, is allowing ourselves to dwell in the only place where change really happens. It can be terrifying. It can also be enlightening in the true sense of the word. Hurtling through the void, we just may learn how to fly. We may discover our true faith.

The fertile void is where surprise is possible again. At Emmaus, we have taken a leap into the unknown of our faith journey. It is terrifying on one level but so surprising and wonderful, and full of grace!


I Wake Close to Morning

Why do people keep asking to see

God's identity papers

when the darkness opening into morning

is more than enough?

Certainly any god might turn away in disgust.

Think of Sheba approaching

the kingdom of Solomon.

Do you think she had to ask,

"Is this the place?"

- Mary Oliver


Crystal Blue Persuasion - Tommy James & The Shondells (With Lyrics)

The 5th Dimension - Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In (with lyrics)

Lee Ann Womack - I Hope You Dance

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