“From the sweet-scented streams of Thine eternity give me to drink, O my God, and of the fruits of the tree of Thy being enable me to taste, O my Hope! From the crystal springs of Thy love suffer me to quaff, O my Glory, and beneath the shadow of Thine everlasting providence let me abide, O my Light! Within the meadows of Thy nearness, before Thy presence, make me able to roam, O my Beloved, and at the right hand of the throne of Thy mercy, seat me, O my Desire! From the fragrant breezes of Thy joy let a breath pass over me, O my Goal, and into the heights of the paradise of Thy reality let me gain admission, O my Adored One!”
“On this plane, neither the reign of reason is sufficient nor the authority of self. Hence, one of the Prophets of God hath asked: ‘O my Lord, how shall we reach unto Thee?’ And the answer came, ‘Leave thyself behind, and then approach Me.’”
shirin (beijing, china) left: Another fast in Beijing is coming to an end this weekend, & all I can think of is: didn’t it just begin the other day? I’ve enjoyed every minute, the bustle of waking up, praying together, letting the hunger pangs remind me that a huge portion of the world only eats once a day without complaining, the day-long struggle of bettering one’s actions, letting the just-before-eating giddiness set in with glee & subsequent giggles, sharing a lovely modest meal with friends who you care for, & looking forward to doing it all again tomorrow morning … The best part? Some friends we’ve made here have started fasting with us! As a sidenote: The gloriously huge Chinese lion I photographed is what I see on my daily walk. I love how he looks like he is eating his pom pom as if humiliated by the very suggestion! The other sleeping lion? That’s my husband.
kadria (toronto, canada) right: I always find the Fast to be an intense time. It seems to build and release spiritual tension as the soul is prepared and re-shaped for a new year, a fresh start. Part of the spiritual struggle for me this year has inspired comfort in small things. A heartfelt hug, the feel of a handmade quilt, a phone-call home, a visit with good friends. Moments to be grateful for. After a long photography hiatus, taking my photos for Nineteen Days today was another comforting moment. Just the act of walking around at dusk to watch the light was refreshing and helped me remember the importance of doing something that uplifts the soul.