The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog


Holy Listening

tallit

Sharon Pearl is a Spiritual Director who has chosen to act as a guide for people who are wanting to open to the Divine in their lives. She serves people of various faith traditions, although her own path is rooted in Judaism. I met her this past weekend at the MKP USAGE Gathering. (ManKind Project USA Gathering of Elders) as she led a workshop on spirituality. She began the session with nigunim which are wordless, ritual chants that ushered us into a feeling of the sacred. I brought my djembe and the two of us added drum beat rhythms to the mix. From that point, we explored, in small groups our own spiritual paths. She asked us to recall our first powerful spiritual memory. Mine came to me immediately. I was probably 6 or 7 and was sitting next to my father in synagogue for a High Holy Day service. He was wearing his tallis (prayer shawl) and I loved to play with the fringes. He wrapped one side of the garment around my shoulder and even though I didn’t have the words for it at the time, felt as if I was surrounded and protected by the Divine Masculine. Although the Judaism of my childhood focused on God as a male entity, there were mixed messages embedded in those concepts. The judgmental aspects (as taught in synagogue; not in my home) overshadowed the benevolent, nurturing qualities. I began to cry (not unusual over the past several months) as it occurred to me that perhaps that is the feeling I have been missing for most of my life as I distanced myself from allowing for intimacy with the Divine Masculine in ways that I have allowed for with the Divine Feminine.  It also, at this moment, occurred to me that although women were not permitted to wear the prayer shawl at the time, he was setting the stage to encourage me to stretch religious boundaries. For that I honor him. All these years later, this ‘nice Jewish girl’ is an interfaith minister who does wear a tallis at times in synagogue.

I view myself as a strong and resilient woman.. My parents taught me how to do whatever it takes to creatively take care of myself, to pick myself up when I have fallen, to be of service to others, to be independent and not need to rely on other people AND on the flip side, to live in community, as well as to give and receive love in word and action. As a result, most of my romantic relationships have felt out of balance and I have taken on the emotional caregiver role, deflecting the care that the men in my life may have wanted to offer or sending out signals that I am not available for it. Sadly, I think I have missed out on a lot. Joyfully, I am willing to change that pattern and am willing to allow men to take care of me as well.  Not sure if Sharon used these words or if they came through me, but I heard the sentence “Everything that came before is preparation for this moment,” and the question “Can I love enough?” Love isn’t just about giving, but receiving the love offered by others too.
I have dear and supportive male friends who are part of my family of choice. I have asked a few of them to help me create a ritual in which they will be present as I share the things I have withheld saying to men throughout my life which includes my father, other male relatives, teachers, friends, lovers, my son, and the Divine Masculine. In that circle, I am willing to allow for vulnerability which I had not previously. I am feeling nervous and anticipatory as I contemplate the possibilities and the doors it will open.
Holy listening for me is about opening my heart as well as my ears to the infinite messages that come from all Sources.

www.sharonpearlma.com



Previous Posts

Sexpot With Stretchmarks
Imagine having your own personal cheerleader who enthusiastically reminds you that you are gorgeous, worthy, creative, brilliant and loveable. Would you believe her? Would you say "Who are you kidding? I'm overweight, under-paid, over worked and under-played." Jenny G. Perry is a Renaissance Woma

posted 10:35:58am Jan. 29, 2015 | read full post »

How Do You Create A Life That You Love?
  One of the most essential questions you can ask yourself,  is the one presented in the title of this article. We have a choice to experience an existence that takes us from the day of our birth to the day of our death, with the 'same old, same old' activities that is about getting by OR w

posted 9:29:54pm Jan. 28, 2015 | read full post »

Is Sleep Highly Over-rated?
    I had long believed and expressed that sleep was highly over-rated whenever someone would ask how I managed to maintain what I called a 'crazy-busy' schedule that included a full time job, several over-lapping consulting jobs, raising a child as a single parent after being widowe

posted 9:08:03am Jan. 28, 2015 | read full post »

The Gift of Vulnerability
A quote from one of my favorite books has set the stage for an ongoing process in my life. The Velveteen Rabbit is a tale of a little boy whose toys dispense wisdom to each other,  the child and the reader of this classic. The rabbit, who is a bit insecure and wondering if the tot will favor him, a

posted 10:17:06am Jan. 26, 2015 | read full post »

On the Elevator
  Yesterday I received a surprise in the mail. It was a tiny pocket sized book called Back To Joy that was compiled by author June Cotner. It contains tidbits of wisdom from the likes of Anne Lamott, John Welwood, Winston Churchill, Helen Keller, Rachel Carson, Og Mandino and someone else wh

posted 9:26:51pm Jan. 24, 2015 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.