Showing posts from January, 2013

of gifts

I have been reading the first of the books in Caiseal Mór's Wellspring Trilogy. This is the third of his trilogies I have encountered, the first two being The Wanderers Trilogy and the Watchers Trilogy. On a weekend when I am receiving gifts to celebrate the anniversary of my birth, I am struck by how profound a gift these books have been, and continue to be, to me.
Mór writes in these books stories of ancient Ireland, the coming of Gaels to Innisfail, then Christians, then Normans, and the challenges that brings to the people of this land and their identity, spirituality, their way of being in the world.
As he writes, he crafts characters - storytelling, poetry weaving, song spinning, bard-druids - that resonate with me. The bards and druids and holy men and women of these stories form a mirror to my own soul, my own being, that help me to see myself clearly, to hear my calling and claim it with courage.
In the Wanderers Trilogy, I met Druids who hold the stories of their people,…

creative discipline

A friend posted a link to this blog on Facebook today: doodling in tongues. comment from another friend was that words are not the only way to engage with God or the Biblical stories.

I like the look of this, as an idea for spiritual discipline (spending time with the Sacred Story and responding), and as a companion for others on their spiritual wanderings / wonderings.

Wordless reflection is part of my spiritual practice, with mandalas or doodling, which is a relief from my very word-dominated life as writer and storyteller, preacher and biblical scholar. And I find it opens my mind and my soul to attentiveness and to entering the Sacred Presence. This involves a stillness, too, sitting in my comfy papasan chair, curtains open to look out on my little patio. And a silence, though music is another way to nurture the soul, colouring a mandala for me is a silent practice. (f you're interested in mandalas, my friend Cathie is facilitating 'A Mandala a Month' from her placemen…

months later, I find words in response to Salmon Fishing in the Yemen

'Terrible movie - it lacked structure.'

But I'm a professional storyteller, and I thought it was a great movie ... was I missing something?

It is so often true that someone else's differing perspective shifts us into a better position from which to view our own position, and to more clearly articulate it for ourselves, if not for others.

So it is that, having recently heard the above response to Salmon Fishing in the Yemen I accepted the invitation to consider my own response to this movie, and to finally find the words to describe how I feel about it.

Which is, essentially, that I found it beautiful - a thing of beauty.

The depictions of scenery from London to the Scottish hills and the deserts of the Yemen were scenes of beauty.

It may not have been surprising in its plot development, or overly clever in its use of storytelling technique. But Salmon Fishing in the Yemen tells a story of courage and discovery. Discovery of what is possible if we dream, if we believe i…