And again, the grass turns green.
And again, the daffodils bloom.
And again, the seeds are sown.
And again, the sun rises.
And again, the sun sets.
And again, the darkness comes.
And again, we gather for prayer.
And again, we gather to eat.
And again, we enter solitude.
And again, we hear a whisper from God.
And again, we taste God’s love made edible.
And again, we see the beauty of God.
Life at the Hermitage, as all life everywhere, is filled with rhythms: from the quickened rhythms of the heartbeats of each beloved guest to the long, slow, cosmic rhythms of expansion and contraction.
A key part of the work of the Hermitage, both for staff and for guests, is to recognize these rhythms, feel them, learn from them, and enter into them. These rhythms have much to teach us.
The wisdom literature of the Hebrew scripture extols the importance of being attentive to these rhythms and to recognize the wisdom of God held within. Some rhythms are simple steady beats that are easily recognized, while others are vastly more complex and may take many generations to understand.
These wisdom texts were central in shaping early monastic life and play a central role in the Rule of St. Benedict which guides many monastic communities even today. These traditions established ways of living for people, whether in community or in solitude, that are filled with rhythms of prayer and work, the rhythms of the church year, and the rhythms of life.
Let us all be attentive to those rhythms that shape and nurture our lives. Rhythms of work, of play, of retreat, of breath, and of prayer. There is wisdom in these rhythms, if we just open ourselves to hear God within.