Free Even of Myself
By Joan O'Sullivan, PBVM (Texas)
Mercy by the Sea recently completed its first Sabbath by the Sea: Exploring a New Way of Being in the Second Half of Life. It was a sacred two weeks with extraordinary participants who were willing to walk deeply into their interior landscapes and to look lovingly on our broken world. Participants came from California, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas.
In the middle of the two weeks, participants engaged in a day of Contemplative Writing with Therese Ragen, Ph.D. With the author’s permission, we offer a piece that Sister of the Presentation Joan O’Sullivan wrote that day:
Free Even of Myself
I am free of even myself – the me that needs to step aside
and make space for the new me that is emerging.
The me that experiences the oneness of everything created,
the interdependence of all subjects and all held in the Light
that shines forever, connecting everything, holding all in its embrace.
I cannot be apart on my own anymore!
I am one with struggle, the fractured parts of myself,
the family members who choose not to connect,
who carry grudges, are sometimes bitter and act non-lovingly.
Unconditional Love is growing within me,
taking the place of my judgements, non-compassionate re-actions and projections.
Compassion, Understanding, Gentleness, are beginning to move in me more now.
A claiming of the being I was at birth.
This is the time for me to give birth to the true child,
the one who has always been One with the Creator and Creation.
God’s star on Earth, destined to light all paths she treads,
by her presence of truth, acceptance, an acknowledgement of who she truly is:
a contemplative presence making the Universe more visible
for those who desire to contemplate the magnificence of 'Being One Earth Community',
cradled in the arms of each other and of a much larger Presence,
that holds us all together.
This an awesome and frightening thought, and yet one that calls me to my true home,
Uniting Heaven and Earth, shouting all is One, being connected and supportive of one another,
noticing the co-operative nature embedded in each other and
taking delight in the God of diversity who birthed our blue Planet
out of which we have all emerged, glowing, shimmering,
whole, yet part of a whole, that needs every being to be in communion,
recognizing our true identity as Earthlings.
This is who we are, this is who I am, this is who you are,
All stars, rivers, humans, sky and sea …
The Original Fire that flared forth over time and continues to flare forth today,
In ways seen and unseen, touchable and out of reach as yet.
We are the ancestors called to birth the future,
To leave our footprints behind so that others may find their way
to God who is always waiting to welcome us home
to our true place of belonging as life continues to evolve.
The Great Mystery We All Are