Thursday, November 22, 2012

First Chester Metta Circle this evening!

We held the first ever Chester Metta Circle this evening, in a room above Sally's Secret Garden in the Old Dutch House on the Bridge Street Rows (the rows are medieval walkways.  The house is over 400 years old, and the street is nearly 2000 years old)  The circle is held at the top of these stairs in the picture!

The timing was wonderful too - by chance it coincided exactly with a parade in Chester to light the Christmas lights.  There were children with lanterns, a walking huge snowman, drumming and dancing, and a choir on the row opposite us singing carols.  At exactly the moment towards the end of the metta meditation, when I talked about extending it outwards to all beings, the choir began to sing "Joy to the World..."

I hope it's a good sign for an auspicious beginning to exploring metta and Love in general together here in Chester.  May All Beings Be Happy!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Rumi Meets Shams of Tabriz

The Leicester Great Heart Circle met last night for the second of the three nights of Rumi.
We talked about how Rumi, an established preacher and lawyer with a growing reputation and audience, met with Shams of Tabriz.  Shams is described as a strange, wild man, a mystic, a hermit, a wanderer.  They become constant companions and he sets Rumi's heart ablaze with love for the Divine, but Shams disappears as mysteriously as he came. Rumi is transformed, he starts to write his poetry and starts to dance and whirl in longing for oneness. We read the poem "The Guest House" to the sound of the ney flute :

Darling, the body is a guest house;
every morning someone new arrives,
Don't say, "O, another weight around my neck!"
or your guest will fly back to nothingness.
Whatever enters your heart is a guest
from the invisible worl: entertain it well.

Every day and every moment, a thought comes
like an honoured guest into your heart.
My soul, regard each thought as a person,
for very person's value is in the thought they hold.