Proclaiming the Light in the Midst of Danger and Uncertainty
by Chris Duvall, RCsP
Years ago, I met James O’Dea in a CSL center and later experienced his leadership during a 7-day retreat in Crestone, Colorado. Ever since, I’ve attended to his posts, because they demonstrate profound compassion for suffering inflicted by hatred. They proclaim Light in the midst of such contexts. This post supports us as we face dangerous and uncertain personal and collective times. I invite you to click on the link for his video or read the text below. Readers and viewers have permission to share the post.
As I share, I offer this prayer.
I invoke the Power, Presence, and Deep Understanding of the Divine Heart as Eternal Truth and Light in the midst of these times.
I know that I and all live, move, and have our being in the Power of Truth and Light; that It lives, moves and has Its being in us.
I unify with The Divine Heart of Love that strengthens us to meet danger and uncertainty with crystal clear, resilient, and Light-filled responses.
On behalf of you and me, I claim Divine Guidance and Power to be Its Light.
I am grateful that Divine Evolutionary Love hears and responds to this prayer, according to its Will.
I release into Spiritual Law and know it is accomplished. And, so it is.
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James O’Dea’s recent post is below.
How Can I Share My Gold?
[James O’Dea delivered the inspiring remarks below during a recent Sanctuary of the Heart gathering. Both an activist and a mystic, James is a former President of the Institute of Noetic Sciences, Washington office director of Amnesty International, and CEO of the Seva Foundation. He worked with the Middle East Council of Churches in Beirut during a time of war and massacre and lived in Turkey for five years during the civil upheaval and coup d’etat.]
What a beautiful day in creation. My native elder friend Sequoia True Blood would say, no matter what was happening, he would say, “What a beautiful day in creation.” Resilience is that strength and courage and conviction to live into your highest values. Not to think them, but to live them.
And then there are those forces that blow those winds of despair, and we can feel our conviction quietly crumbling inside us. “But Lord, why so much cruelty? Why?” And the heart itself breaks.
Yet somehow that breaking awakens a beauty that stands in the doorway of the heart as a signal to all.
My favorite symbol for the resilience to meet a dangerous and uncertain world is gold.
They put gold on the domes of temples because when it rains, when the stormy weathers come, if you put copper or any other metal, it goes green and black and silver — but gold does not oxidize.
In fact, if you pour sulfuric acid over your skin, it’ll burn — it’ll burn through your clothes. It will burn through wood, it’ll burn and bubble in lead. But when sulfuric acid meets the gold, it bows. Nothing happens because the gold is in balance. Its equanimity, its equipoise cannot be shunted away by the Sulfuric.
And you know, Sulfuric will come into each of our lives. It is coming into the world with boiling anger and hate, that contempt for nature, and all the myriad ways we see it.
There was a time when I said unto my God, “I want to believe in the coming of a new humanity and global civilization of peace, but I have just witnessed massacre in the refugee camps.” I was experiencing that crumbling. And I went South to a refugee camp that had been bombed the way Ukraine is getting bombed today. In the middle of the rubble, there was a man who called to me and two doctors who were there. As we came close, he said, let me serve you coffee!
I couldn’t believe it. In the middle of the rubble, where his family had been killed, wasn’t the expression of hatred. There wasn’t the gaping, seething wound. He wanted to be seen. He wanted his gold to shine through, to see him as a dignified, noble, beautiful human being who always served the guest that came to his house. And it was in that seeing, revealing, letting himself be seen by my own reignited heart, that I felt that heat of love and witnessing of the indomitable spirit of the human being.
That is what resilience invites us to witness and to share.
And it is all about sharing and relationship because sharing reignites the other. It helps inspire, helps us dream, the reality of that beauty that does exist — even amidst chaos and cruelty.
So I ask you to face that question: how can I live my gold? How can I share my gold? So that, that gold is part of the Dawn of the world that allows us to face these uncertainties. And I say to you be, be the person whose house burns down and who says, “My God, how lucky I am. I came out with my light.” Be that resilience of the one who was criminally assaulted and yet finds their way to forgiveness. Be the enactment of your own highest values. We all have to face some betrayal, some loss through death or disease, but let us set ablaze a world with the love that lies in the heart of resilience — that can and will face the uncertainties that come.