Historical setting: 589 C.E. In the Vosges Mountains
My thoughts seem always on Ana. Confessing the sinful distraction would give me another chance to say her name aloud. And by this time my tonsure is hidden in the curls of a layman and my thoughts of Ana are simply part of my gratitude. Thank you God for Ana. May the seeds of spirit floating free fill her garden. Now I’m thinking of Ana gathering dandelion leaves.
Last I saw her she was bedazzled by the rich spring greens just appearing up from the earth planted only by God without any human farmer intervening. The bitters of springtime seasoned her porridge and gave us new strength to till a garden patch where none has ever been. And in this time of year even long established gardens have yet to grow, so anything stored over from another year’s gleanings are long gone. Without the wild plants this would be a hungry season. Yet she found them and she was amazed. The more you pull them out, the more will grow. It’s the pattern of abundance.
When the Brother Servant was sharing the meal at Ana’s house she mentioned her appreciation for dandelions just as we were eating them. I called it abundance but Brother Servant called it grace. Grace is the pouring out of God’s wonderful gifts even when we don’t ask — unsolicited, unplanted by us, unpaid and free. The metaphors of nature speak to all of us who would take notice of so many things that grow wild and sweet with no farmer’s plan to make a harvest. Thank you God for these riches of this earth you have spread before us all, grasses for the beasts, and seeds and roots and bitter leaves for humankind.
And this metaphor for grace holds another verse of God’s own poetry, to speak of resurrection.
It was said “a flower which unlike other flowers that wither and fade as they die, mysteriously blooms again. As it dies, the dandelion blooms into a ‘beautiful white globe, like a full moon, luminous, airy and mystical… At the very moment of death, in a silky silent explosion, multitudes of white parachutes are released, each parachute carrying the sacred message: freedom is life.’ The dandelion, in its death sends itself into the world in freedom, spreads itself everywhere in ways no one has been able to control…” [Footnote]
[Footnote] This blogger’s personal note: my cousin, Rev. Dr. Carol Ann Munro shared this quote as a benediction at a memorial for another family member whose spirit we all knew continues, well-mingled in the creative froth of Universal Spirit. It was such a perfect metaphor of resurrection I asked her if I could offer it again here. She said it has a source: (Hays, Edward, Sundancer Foster of Peace books, 1982, and continuing.) Thank you Carol.
(Continues, Tuesday, April 19)