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As a member of the core community at Santiwana I rejoice in our web and congratulate you. Over the months and years ahead I would like to contribute reflections, primarily from my own experience of being a full time resident surrounded by nature and its variety of expressions in color, shape, form, sound, and to share with you the excitement and aliveness of our created Universe - - the experience of ‘growing with’ nature within the cosmic adventure. Truly this adventure is just waiting for our attention and openness to recognize it and allow it to enter deeply into our psyche and if we allowed that then we would begin to  experience the powers of the Universe as our own.  We are in fact  the consciousness of the Earth and the Earth is our teacher and giver of  deep, enduring gifts.

This is the ‘way of the Universe – This is the ‘way of Life’

At Santi Wana our long rainy season can be quite dramatic.  One evening, it was already dark outside and I was reading, sitting at my desk when suddenly a storm circled my shelter and immediately the rain poured in from the window in front of me. I got up to close the glass window and at the same time the wind blew in the screen and knocked over my desk lamp putting an end to it as it lay on the floor.

My daily custom is to rise early before dawn to meditate and reflect on the daily scripture. The one light in my shelter is a small fluorescent bulb attached to a beam at the highest point of the ceiling. Its light is dim and rather distant but that morning it served my needs. Gradually the sun appeared and I sat at my desk absorbed in this movement of earth. At the same time there was a conscious awareness to being caught in the movement and exchange of transformation; from finite to infinite. As I sat there all of a sudden the flood of brilliant light completely filled my room  ever so gently overshadowing the lesser light. I was flooded with and swept into the exchange and transformation of heaven and earth, simply being there in empty, alert  presence became a gift of encounter.

The Sun breaking into awareness - - - - today I want to pause longer in this presence and allow myself time to look deeper into the gift of the sun.

‘How’ the sun is at the center of the solar system?  The Earth is just the tiniest fraction of the sun’s matter, sailing silently through a space filled with our star’s brightness. Yes, I felt that directly in my shelter in a bodily and imaginative way.

Each second the sun transforms four million tons of itself into light. Each second a huge chunk of the sun vanishes into radiant energy that soars away and spreads out in all directions. Nothing in all our human experience compares to this preternatural blaze that engulfs oceans of matter each day. Can we comprehend this fact of the sun’s massive transformation into energy?  …What would enable me to take this into myself?...into my comprehension?  …How can I begin to understand this extravagant and monstrous discharge of energy? This fact truly overwhelms us! Our cosmological mind opens us and  a new synthesis surfaces; science and religion.

In the sun we can speak of the cosmological meaning of sacrifice. The sun with each second is giving itself over to become energy…that we with every meal partake of. Have we ever reflected on this truth? The sun converts itself into a flow of energy that photosynthesis changes into plants that are consumed by animals. We humans feast on the sun’s energy in the form of rice, wheat, maize etc. Each day the sun dies as sun and is reborn as the vitality of Earth. We are the energy of the sun.

Just take another moment to reflect. The actual energy coursing through our body and nervous systems was bestowed upon us by the sun … and our vitality is a natural evolutionary development of the sun’s vitality. This extravagant bestowal of energy could be regarded as a manifestation of a deeper underlying impulse pervading the Universe. In the star … in the human heart a movement into a culture of living cosmology.

When cosmology enters a living culture, children will be taught by the Sun and the Moon, by the rainfall and starlight … how the sun now pours out this same primordial energy as when the hydrogen atoms came together to form our great sun that now continues to pour out the same primordial energy from the beginning of time. Some of this sunlight is gathered up by the Earth  to swim in the ocean and to sing in the forests and some drawn into the human venture enabling us to yawn, to think, only because coursing thru our blood lines are molecules energized by the sun. If we burn brightly today it is only because this same energy was burning brightly as the sun a month ago!

If the sun were to stop transforming itself into energy all the plants would die … in our veins and flesh, all the heat giving molecules would go cold. The sun’s story finds its climax in a story from the human family of men and women whose lives manifested the same generosity and whose sacrifice enables others to reach fulfillment. Human generosity is possible only because at the center of the solar system a magnificent generosity pours forth free energy day and night, without stop and without complaint and without  the slightest hesitation. This is the ‘way of the Universe’ –  this is the ‘way of Life’ … A way each of us can join: accept the sun’s gift of energy and transform it into creative action that will enable the community to flourish.  Moral education rests upon holding in mind, over long periods of time, the magnificent achievements of 15 billion years of creativity. The task of transformation is the way we start each day inside the simple truth; a resplendently beautiful living Earth drifts light as a feather around the great roaring generosity of the Sun.

Reflections on the Sun are adapted from
“Hidden Heart of the Cosmos”   Brian Swimme