The Labyrinth: Really Back and Really Forth

The work of Spirit is always circular and labyrinthine.

I often find myself cruising along in life at any number of things when I suddenly run up against push back.  Sometimes, the pushback feels almost like a punch in the face.  At other times, it’s so sublte that it’s more like  feather brush against the cheek.

I’m not talking about emergencies or the bottom dropping out of life experiences.  I am talking about forward movement in anything: work, relationships, health and having something–usually a someone–calling my experience to something I have not noticed.

When we visit together, you do a lot of talking and not much listening.

I was afraid to say anything in your class.

When I share a problem with you, I don’t need you to fix it.

When you told our class that it was NOT OKAY to make jokes about gay people, I felt safe in a classroom for the first time.

Your people didn’t know much about us, but my people had to know all about you.  It was a matter of survival (my elder African American friend said to me).

Each of these kinds of encounters have stopped me.  Turned me around, even if for a little while, made me look within, behind, about, around, above, below before I start moving forward again.

When we have experiences like this, I suggest that it happens when we have advanced in terms of our understanding of ourselves, perhaps even of humanity and at a time when yet we need to pause and examine our roots.  When we are called by Spirit we are moved on the labyrinthine path. It’s forward and backward and forward and backward toward the center. Spirit. No singluar age has the answer to the path we walk. Only we do, and most of us spend our time discovering it, one step at a time.

So, today, if someone says something that stops you in your tracks, it may well be the work of Spirit guiding you along the way of The Labyrinth.

Bob Patrick

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