Stories are our home

The myths, when they are translated into rites, organise the field.*
Joseph Campbell

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.**

Shouldn’t we be suspicious of the desires in the hearts of some people? We suspect our own enough.

I wonder, though, whether deep down in every human heart there is a desire to for beauty.

I was arrested by the following story.

A desperate Michelle reaches out to Nick Cave:

Nick. Am Scottish. Am no very well with the alcohol. Rehab soon. 29/7. Please. Nick. I saw you in Prospect Park NY many years ago. Am so scared. I’m not well. Stagger Me! I think the world of you and The Seeds.^

Cave’s Red Hand Files blog is often a place of intimacy for the musician as he respond to messages people have written. I include his whole letter to Michelle:

Dear Michelle,

Time to give up the booze – you know it, you need to. It’s frightening now, I know, but I can only say this, life is better without it. Impossibly better. It’s difficult to understand right now, it’s frightening right now, I know, but without the drink life is better. Just remember that. You’ll see. You’ll be better. You’ll see. Life is good. You’ll see. Life is good. Life is good. Life is good. 

Prepare to be amazed. 

Love, Nick x^

Life is good.

Your life is good. My life is good.

Deep down there are the desires of our hearts to be awakened.

I include Joseph Campbell’s words because our stories are so important for being fully awake. We may think of stories as ways of trying to understand what we’re doing, but perhaps more true is that what we do is a way of trying to understand our stories.

Wherever we are, whatever we are facing, our stories are our home. They help us face our winter and already contain our expectant spring.

Writing out our stories, in some aspect or way, every day helps us to connect with what is most important when the noise and rush of a day can cover it over with activity without reflection.

*From Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey;
**Psalm 37:4;
^From Nick Cave’s The Red Hand Files: #160.

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