Monday, 20 September 2010

Daydreaming and sinfulness ... understanding through the labyrinth and Simone Weil

It has been good for me to lead the retreat over the weekend to travel out and back and have time to think of different things. Travelling helped me get some distance from my recent pointless pain as well. The labyrinth, both the idea and the practice of it, helped alot with this.

I suppose one way I might now understand what I have been feeling and how I have been reacting to events beyond my control would be to say that rather than losing the plot I have got lost in my own story.
While preparing for the weekend in Lübbecke I re-read parts of For Lovers of God Everywhere which has so many wonderful fragments of wisdom and came across the passage below from Simone Weil, which I mentioned last week. It made me realise that I have perhaps indulged in a daydreaming of grief over the past two months.
Last week I found myself quoting Weil to someone who may yet become a friend while apologizing for seeming to have lost hope. These weeks have been a strange experience for me and I found myself deeply challenged while reading Writing in an Age of Silence by Sara Paretsky and realising that I was finding it very hard to find hope. My facebook entry read:

Feels a little pathetic that a passage on hope in a piece of detective ficton moves me to tears ... "Me, I don't believe in God, let alone the coming of the Messiah. But I did learn from my Zeyde that you must live in hope, the hope that your work can make a difference in the world."

The only way back towards hope will be in the iterative labyrinth of pain and joy.
For a woman who loves daydreaming as much as I do it will be hard to give up getting lost in my own story of inner pain, but I suppose if I don't I really will lose the plot ... as the Bible says perfect love casts out fear. Love is not about daydreaming.

I believe that the root of evil, in everybody perhaps,
but certainly in those whom affliction has touched, is daydreaming.
It is the sole consolation, the unique resource of the afflicted;
the one solace that helps them bear the fearful burden of time;
and a very innocent one, besides being indispensable.
So how could it be possible to renounce it?
It has only one disadvantaage, which is that it is unreal.
To renounce it for the love of truth is really to abandon all one's possessions in a mad excess of love and to follow Him who is the personification of Truth.
And it is really to bear the cross;
because time is the cross.
In all its forms, without exception,
daydreaming is falsehood.
It excludes love. Love is real.
Simone Weil