Eyes blinking in the sunlight,
lungs expanding as they draw in breath,
sensitive skin, new, innocent, like a child,
delighting at the gentle breeze.
Adam gazes into the sky,
brilliant with celestial radiance,
and penetrating everything below,
the two, heaven and earth, united.
Hands raised up, he looks, in wonder,
on the being that he is:
these palms, these fingers,
ah, and these legs, this body!
A garden of immense beauty, surrounding,
everything blossoming, alive.
Walking about on the grass,
he is full of awe and delight,
yet with a single glance he knows,
immediately and spontaneously,
the meaning of each and every thing, its name.
But he is not walking, gazing alone,
for at his side is the Father,
seen and known, and yet not visible
in the same way as all else is.
He is present even more, more deeply,
more visible in, and yet greater than everything,
closer too, at Adam’s side, yet also within, dwelling.
The Father gently presents, to his beloved son,
everything that there is, plants, animals, birds of the sky.
And Adam drinks in, unceasingly, the pure joy of gift.
All these things, dear Father,
did not have to be, but are!
And I, too, this child of yours,
did not have to be, but am,
with all these things freely given to me,
yet possessing, Father, more than all the rest,
the joy of being near you, upon your breast.
I reach out to these things, enjoying,
and yet in so doing I never depart,
for the slightest moment,
from the warmth and shelter of your embrace.
In you, dear Father, I have found all my good,
the perfect bliss of being what I am,
before you, with you, in you,
in the innate solitude in my heart, my flesh,
transcending all the things around me,
reaching out to you, above all things.
Yet within my heart’s solitude, also,
there is another space,
or, rather, the same space
open in a different direction.
I find, dear Father, utter joy in You,
but I feel also a thirst for another “you,”
one who can dwell here with me, in this place,
rejoicing, both of us together, sharing,
in your one, all-enfolding embrace.
How beautiful, Father, to be completely full in you,
and yet from this very fullness
to yearn for someone to share in this,
incarnating it together in our life,
and catapulting us, anew, my God, to you,
from whom, certainly, we have never left.
Naked without shame, this beautiful truth,
that there is complete transparency
of the man before the woman
and the woman before the man,
in the openness of mutual acceptance and reciprocal gift,
an openness that reaches out to enfold all creation,
welcoming it into the purity of this embrace.
Purity of heart, this beautiful truth,
that eyes gaze only within the realm of gift,
looking at the other in the light of their deepest truth,
indeed, within the light of God enfolding them.
Openness before you, Father, this alone allows
openness also to exist between each created thing,
between the persons made to live with one another,
enfolded in the embrace of all-enfolding Love.
This openness of mutual gift, in our human life,
is but a reflection and a share, in pure grace,
in the mystery of your own life, God,
in the blissful joy of your perfect embrace,
Father and Son, one in the Spirit whom you share.
Sonship and daughterhood: Adam and Eve
abiding before their loving Father
in pure reception of the gift
ever flowing from your gracious hands.
Nuptial love: above all their thirst for you,
the joy of being wholly yours above all things,
yet allowing also the thirst for created beauty,
refraction of your glorious light, to blossom,
and the making present of your own love, here,
opening out to share, only more deeply,
in the life that is yours, alive in us.
And the purity of this love, your own love,
inundating our lives, transfiguring them,
flows out freely in the beauty of fruitfulness,
an expression of your own paternity,
in which you beget for all eternity
the Son of your eternal Love,
and are one with him in endless joy,
in the sheltering womb of the Spirit.
Yes, this is a beautiful image of your life, my God,
in its unity and distinctness, Persons united in love,
one completely, inseparable, dwelling with one another,
and abiding, indeed, within the very mystery of the Beloved,
and yet not the same, rejoicing always to be “You” and “I,”
“Us” in the blissful intimacy of endless Embrace.
As a woman sheltering a child in her womb,
who is wholly within her, coming from her flesh,
and yet wholly other, a source of contemplation and joy,
so too, my Father, you bear the Son entirely in your bosom,
rejoicing that he is so close, one heartbeat alone, one blood,
and yet the blood of two, surging together a harmony of love.
This harmony, this indwelling joy, this very bond of intimacy,
this is nothing but the Spirit whom you share,
the enfolding tenderness and sheltering womb of Love’s embrace.
Adam and Eve glimpse this, Father, in the garden,
in which all things are transparent to this light.
The whole creation is enfolded in the realm of gift,
the pure gift flowing from you loving hands.
A garden…the whole of creation you have made,
unreservedly offered to those whom you love,
just as, for all eternity you offer all to your Son.
Thus, they are gifted and invited simply to receive,
to welcome the gift of your fatherhood, creating,
dwelling thus within the mystery of the Son,
vibrating at the Spirit’s slightest breath and touch.
In the sheltering womb of your abiding presence,
they find such joy and bliss in childhood,
and in the intimacy forged by this gestation,
mutual dwelling with one another, yet distinct,
in the spousal embrace and transparent fruitfulness.
The Son, for all eternity, receives your gift,
the gift which is nothing, Father, but you yourself,
and in receiving surrenders all back to you,
being completely, simply, the beloved Son.
Beloved and loving in return, one who is held,
caressed, cherished, delighted in and delights,
this is who the Son is, my God,
and who you are also, Father, before him,
and, yes, who the Spirit is as well.
This also is our own life in its deepest truth,
our origin, our destiny, and the truth alive,
already now, in every moment.
Adam and Eve knew this by your gift,
and yet were asked to share, precisely as gift,
in the free and loving acceptance of the Son,
by assenting to this free donation, giving back again.
For love is not love unless it is free,
and love is not fully mature unless it can see,
but seeing springs from trusting surrender,
just as surrender springs from the gift of sight.
They were asked, and offered, both of these at once:
seeing the beauty that is yours, to surrender all,
little children in the Father’s arms,
thus possessed by you, to possess all things.
But the tempter comes and insinuates something else.
You do not truly see these things.
Don’t you see that your filial surrender
is actually the surrender of a slave,
letting go of true possessing, true freedom,
as well as true understanding of every thing?
God is withholding himself from you,
keeping for himself what is best…
but it can be yours if you want it,
only grasp for it to possess,
and you will see, have, and enjoy.
Ah, but this is a terrible deception!
To think that we can have anything apart from you, my God!
All is ours, nothing at all is withheld,
with only one condition…and one not arbitrary,
but simply inscribed in the very nature of gift:
that we dwell within the arms of the Giver,
enjoying all things as your gift,
yes, as the expression of your paternal Heart.
But when we turn away, grasping,
seeking to understand apart from your light,
our seeing of your inner mystery, awesome,
is fractured and obscured.
No longer, for us, is God a Community of Love,
pure giving of Lover to Beloved
and the Beloved’s reciprocal gift,
and the dwelling of two in a single Embrace.
Now we see you, God, as a Taskmaster,
jealous of your prerogatives, lording over us power,
authority, and might, arbitrary, for your own gain.
Ah, we do not understand that, for you,
there is no gain but the gain of love,
there is no glory but the glory of embrace,
and you neither seek, desire, nor have,
any joy, gladness, or indeed anything,
that is not enfolded in this all-enfolding Circle
of mutual giving, mutual acceptance,
and the blessed togetherness that you are:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit…Love.