In the circle of life

Whenever I start a story, there’s always a ‘before’.

Before this time, this event, there was.

And living here in this little valley in South West Wales, we are immersed in the endless circle of life. At the same time, recognising that we are just here for a metaphorical season.

Here time is more circular than linear, though it never goes backwards.

Seasons progress in an arc. Sometimes throwing surprises that catch us off-guard, yet always circling forward with the consistency of the sun’s rising.

We can flow with this, honouring its momentum, or assume that we are somehow the exception. The ‘I’ that is outside of time, immune to its calling.

Indeed the tinsel of our culture offers us this fabrication in multiple ways. We can shut out what we don’t want to see or insulate ourselves with a superior sense of self. Hide behind the curtains of our own making, which sadly disintegrate in the storm.

Yet this is the circle of life, and we have the opportunity to live within it to the full.

To delight in the cycles of the seasons and move with their embrace. Being present to our fecundity (isn’t that a gorgeous word?) and sharing its provisions.

Choosing to be in rhythm with time.

All shall be Amen and Alleluia.

We shall rest and we shall see,

We shall see and we shall know,

We shall know and we shall love,

We shall love and we shall praise.

Behold our end which is no end.

+ Augustine of Hippo, from Desmond Tutu, An African Prayer Book

Thanks for letting me walk with you daily – I appreciate the company.


This week

I’ve been drawn to explore our relationship with time further. Wondering whether time is more like water drew out some lovely insights:

  • Water as energy with different expressions of ice, liquid and steam
  • Water as a river with eddies, ripples and twists, or as tides with their ebbs and flows
  • Being waterless in a time of drought
  • Unmeasurable, unending and unfathomable, but very real in our time-space world
  • Entering ‘oceanic’ states – being engrossed in the flow of creativity and art

Thanks to Steve D, Alastair D, Jan H, Gordon M and Joy G. There are lots to ponder here.