Sacred Spaces

On the double movement of Initiation.

Nature, manifest both inside and outside our body, in all landscapes and societies, initiates us time after time, day after day, through the senses that put us in contact with it. It is because the whole human experience is a continuous initiation that I understand that everything the body communicates to us is sacred, that is, capable of plunging us into the Deep Life.

But this Initiation happens in two movements, both necessary and irreplaceable. Since we are fully incarnated — and how fortunate that it is so in a supposedly nature-based path — our Initiation is something that, above all, suddenly happens to us; it takes us by surprise. If we kept ourselves busy in a constant search, we would probably interrupt the process way too early. Occasionally, however, we need to reverse its course. At times when Cerridwen is not pursuing us so intensely, it is we who go to her, and so we invite Awen to hurry on his visit.

These are moments when we take our place in the Cosmos, that is, moments when we recognise ourselves in the Centre. Let us make no mistake: Initiation is not compatible with the anthropocentric delusion. This place of sovereignty and dependence stands next to the Fire which unveils us to ourselves, which places us face to face with all beings in the great Wheel, in a full and unveiled Presence. The Fire that, once shared, connects the core of the soul with the Center of the World.

We share it in the candles that we light on the altars around the house, in the small and large corners where we feed the memories of our ancestors, the power of the spirits of the place, the fascination for those who remain when everything passes. We share it by the fire in the grove, whenever in the silence a greater Silence awaits, as clear and audible as the sound of the wind dancing with the trees. We also share it quarter by quarter with the rest of the tribe and the whole world, whenever the Nemeton fills up to celebrate the seasons, the moons, the rites of passage in between the many lives this life contains.

Some see in the flames of the so-called sacred spaces a reenactment of the creative Fire of Brighid, the one that kindles the fireplaces at home, the furnaces in the workshops, and the hearts of the Bards. As we continue by our gestures the creative action of the Invincible Life, we also perpetuate its structuring effects in the World. In other words, whenever we visit an altar to recreate the Cosmos, we accept the challenge to build more just relationships with ourselves and with all beings.

In other words, the vocation to the Sacred is the vocation to Peace. And a Deep Peace at that.