Suddenly she understood. She was beholding a wondrous and glorious truth; “a great multitude whom no man could number” brought like herself by the King to the Kingdom of Love and to the High Places so that they could now pour out their lives in gladdest abandonment, leaping down with Him to the sorrowful, desolate places below, to share with others the life which they had received. She herself was only one drop amongst that glad exultant throng of Self-givers, the followers of the King of Love, united to Him and with one another, each one equally blessed and beloved as herself. “For He loves each one of us,” she said to herself, “as though there were only one to love.”
from Hind’s Feet on High Places
I read an excellent article this week on the subject. The entire article can be found here, but this is one of my favorite quotes:
As a music teacher, I hope that the study of music begets in my students a habit of searching for the causes and details of beautiful things, and that the love of beauty will nourish the love of knowledge and truth. As students’ intellects are opened to the power of music, I hope they will strive to imitate in their day-to-day lives the musical virtues of harmoniousness, proportion, good timing, appropriate flexibility or grace, and “striking the right note” in thought, speech, feeling, and action.
We must realize the yawning pitfall in that very characteristic of home life which is so often glibly paraded as its principal attraction. ‘It is there that we appear as we really are: it is there that we can fling aside the disguises and be ourselves.’
What chiefly distinguishes domestic from public conversation is surely very often simply its downright rudeness.
How, then, are people to behave at home? If a man can’t be comfortable and unguarded, can’t take his ease and ‘be himself’ in his own house, where can he? That is, I confess, the trouble. The answer is an alarming one. There is nowhere this side of heaven where one can safely lay the reins on the horse’s neck. It will never be lawful simply to ‘be ourselves’ until ‘ourselves’ have become sons of God. It is all there in the hymn — ‘Christian, seek not yet repose.’ This does not mean, of course, that there is no difference between home life and general society. It does mean that home life has its own rule of courtesy — a code more intimate, more subtle, more sensitive, and, therefore, in some ways more difficult, than that of the outer world.
God creates the vine and teaches it to draw up water by its roots and, with the aid of the sun, to turn that water into a juice which will ferment and take on certain qualities. Thus every year, from Noah’s time till ours, God turns water into wine. That, men fail to see. Either like the Pagans they refer the process to some finite spirit, Bacchus or Dionysus: or else, like the moderns, they attribute real and ultimate causality to the chemical and other material phenomena which are all that our senses can discover in it. But when Christ at Cana makes water into wine, the mask is off. The miracle has only half its effect if it only convinces us that Christ is God: it will have its full effect if whenever we see a vineyard or drink a glass of wine we remember that here works He who sat at the wedding party in Cana. Every year God makes a little corn into much corn: the seed is sown and there is an increase, and men, according to the fashion of their age, say ‘It is Ceres, it is Adonis, it is the Corn-King,’ or else ‘It is the laws of Nature.’ The close-up, the translation, of this annual wonder is the feeding of the five thousand. Bread is not made there of nothing. Bread is not made of stones, as the Devil once suggested to Our Lord in vain. A little bread is made into much bread. The Son will do nothing but what He sees the Father do. There is, so to speak, a family style.
These Signs do not take us away from reality; they recall us to it — recall us from our dream world of ‘ifs and ands’ to the stunning actuality of everything that is real. They are focal points at which more reality becomes visible than we ordinarily see at once. I have spoken of how He made miraculous bread and wine and of how, when the Virgin conceived, He had shown Himself the true Genius whom men had ignorantly worshipped long before. It goes deeper than that. Bread and wine were to have an even more sacred significance for Christians and the act of generations was to to be the chosen symbol among all mystics for the union of the soul with God. These things are no accidents. With Him there are no accidents. When He created the vegetable world He knew already what dreams the annual death and resurrection of the corn would cause to stir in pious Pagan minds, He knew already that He Himself must so die and live again and in what sense, including and far transcending the old religion of the Corn King. He would say ‘This is my Body.’ Common bread, miraculous bread, sacramental bread — these three are distinct, but not to be separated. Divine reality is like a fugue. All His acts are different, but they all rhyme or echo to one another.
“Our Lord took a body like to ours and lived as a man in order that those who had refused to recognize Him in His superintendence and captaincy of the whole universe might come to recognize from the works He did here below in the body that what dwelled in this body was the Word of God.”
This year the Advent season will be as long as it possibly can be! Enjoy.
“No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself, and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true.”