Courageous Meeting

Today begins Courageous Meeting: The Circle Way. There are 28 of us. At an Episcopal Center, Transfiguration Spirituality Center near Cincinnati. There will be lots of big and small circles. To lean into detail and to soften hearts to bigger picture. To remember the feeling. To improve practice. To grow and lend courage.


People everywhere seek
and accomplishment.

We do it as individuals.
We hope for it as groups — teams, organizations, families,communities.

Being and belonging
requires courage from all of us.

Circle guides us.
​In meetings and in community.
From inner to outer.
From now to the longer arc.

This workshop is about growing new culture as individuals and groups.
It’s a culture remembered, and, imagined into being.
It’s creating enough space to get to meaning and emptiness.
It’s creating enough structure to get to order and practice.

“All life is meeting.”
Martin Buber, 20th Century Philosopher


Hafiz — My Sweet, Crushed Angel

Though I’ve had significant periods of my life in search of God, I don’t have answers. That might be the point. Surrendering to not-knowing might be the closest any of us get to divine. And, and, and…

I love the poetry of Hafiz, the 13th century Persian Poet. I love the full and rich melodies that I’ve read. I also love the single sentences that he offers. This poem below in included in a publication, Love Poems From God: Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West, compiled by Daniel Ladinsky. I opened this book this morning seeking some Hafiz. The tenderness of this poem was a gift I needed to hear in words.


My Sweet, Crushed Angel

You have
not danced so badly, my dear,
trying to hold hands with the Beautiful One.

You have waltzed with great style, my sweet, crushed angel,
to have ever neared God’s heart at all.

Our Partner is notoriously difficult to follow, and even His
best musicians are not always easy to hear.

So what if the music has stopped for a while.
So what if the price of admission to the Divine is out of reach tonight.

So what, my sweetheart, if you lack the ante to gamble for real love.

The mind and the body are famous for holding the heart ransom,
but Hafiz knows the Beloved’s eternal habits. Have patience,
for He will not be able to resist your longings
and charms for long.

You have not danced so badly, my dear,
trying to kiss the Magnificent

You have actually waltzed with tremendous style,
my sweet, O my sweet,