Certainty in a Sea of Chaos

September 12, 2022

Certainty in a Sea of Chaos

By Amba Gale

While the world wages wars
and argumentativeness will, apparently, not cease,
there is always this:

The enduring truth of the poetic imagination.
There, you are not lost.
          —Amba Gale

In a world that announces chaos, violence, and unpredictable events at every turn, we are not immune from being deeply affected, personally.

The teachings of these times, often laden with grief, with loss, with heart brokenness, also lead us into new insights, new revelations, new resiliences.

And, they lead us sometimes, to a necessity to face our own reluctance to let go of all we already know, including all of our plans.

“Man plans, and God Laughs” is an old Yiddish adage.

While our plans seem to give us a sense of safety, let us consider the possibility that that is a false sense. Perhaps there is another, more inward place, from which we can get that sense of belonging, wherein lies safety.

A man, or a woman, must be able to live in uncertainty. Perhaps Keats gives us a clue, when he says:

“I am certain of nothing but of the holiness
of the heart’s affections and the truth of Imagination.”

Where lives the holiness of our heart’s affections?
Where can we dive into the truth of our imagination?

Juggling all our commitments high in the air, and with not knowing when and where or even if they will land, where is our grounding?

When the earth rattles in a constant quaking of new changes, and new disasters, where do we find our footing?

In what ways can we put our hands in the earth, and regenerate ourselves?

Is it possible to find our own “belonging” in connecting with the earth, the soil, the trees, the seeds, the natural world?

What is your earth?
Is it the soil? Music?

What is your floor?
Is it painting? Meditation?

In what ways do you come to ground?
Through writing? Poetry?

I, myself, have been able to find my home, my grounding, in the poetic imagination, as I still myself to listen and hear my own “heart’s affections” guiding me to truth.

That Inner Voice that speaks with such clarity, vision, and simplicity, lives within us. We have only to tap it.

Cultivating our longing for inner knowing, arriving deep within, we silence and still ourselves. We let our body grow soft, and open, and then start to listen.

The Voice – That – Guides, perhaps your Muse, wherever you find her, transcends time. We can also transcend the kind of knowing that was taught to us from our early years in school. I was given awards for knowing. I was given good grades for knowing. I was given kudos for knowing.

Instead of going after that kind of knowledge, let us look elsewhere – to the “holiness of the heart’s affections,” and enter a new land, with curiosity, and a sense of wonder, a land of not knowing, not striving, not even acquiring.

A land, instead, which requires leaning out over the edge, where humility lives, versus the arrogance of knowing, and where inner wisdom is ours to connect with, and be guided by, if we allow ourselves to be silent enough.


The Absence of Striving

By Amba Gale

after all,
there is nothing to do but be,

to drop inside,

deep inside,

and merge with what gives me peace.

the path is to face
the sacred moments
granted to me
one by one by one by one by one
by the ever Living, ever Giving, Stream of Grace.

all this building outside
has outrun its course.
and my work is simple.

What is mine will come to me of its own accord.

“Patience,” counsels the inner voice.

“Find your purpose in ‘Wait.’

Walk inside,

where you can merge with the Great Blue Heron who waits patiently.”

This absence of striving
brings me
to a bed of Deep Rest.

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