The sacredness of creation is further celebrated by Meister Eckhart and Hildegard of Bingen. Eckhart teaches that all beings are words of God and books about God.
Notice what he is saying: God is not just in the book of the Bible but in every creature and every creature is a “bible” in the sense of a “book about God.”
He goes on:
My mouth expresses and reveals God but the existence of a stone does the same and people often recognize more from actions than from words.
Moreover, Eckhart assures us that all creatures are gladly doing the best they can to express God. For Eckhart:
God is constantly speaking only one thing…. In this one utterance he speaks his Son and at the same time the Holy Spirit and all creatures…. There where God speaks the creatures, there God is.
Thus Eckhart is linking creation and creatures with the one word of God, the Logos. This is of course Cosmic Christ language wherein each creature is another Christ, a word of God. A parallel teaching is found in Judaism, namely that each creature is an image of God. And also in Buddhism, namely that each creature is another Buddha, a Buddha Nature. All these efforts at naming the divine presence in creatures and in creation as a whole is an effort, however imperfect, of reminding us of the sacredness of creation.
Hildegard of Bingen pictures Divinity and creation as lovers. She names the relationship in the following manner.
Creation is allowed in intimate love
to speak to the Creator as if to a lover.
The relationship of these lovers is mutual.
As the Creator loves his/her creation,
so Creation loves the Creator.
Creation, of course, was fashioned to be adorned,
to be showered, to be gifted with the love of the Creator.
The entire world has been embraced by this kiss.
God has gifted Creation with everything that is necessary.
She elaborates on the “lover” motif between God and creation this way:
I compare the great love of Creator and creation to the same love and fidelity with which God binds woman and man together. This is so that together they might be creatively fruitful.
For Hildegard, as for Eckhart, Divinity or Logos is found everywhere in Creation.
God’s Word is in all Creation, visible and invisible.
The Word is living, being, spirit, all verdant greening,
This Word manifests in every creature….
Now this is how the spirit is in the flesh—the Word is indivisible from God.
This is her manifesto on the Incarnation, of how Divinity and flesh, eternity and history, meld and reveal themselves to us in time and place, in spirit and matter. Here we experience non-dualism in action.
Adapted from Matthew Fox, One River, Many Wells: Wisdom Springing from Global Faiths, pp. 31, 33.
Queries for Contemplation
Have you experienced a stone as a revealer of the Divine? How? When? Under what circumstances?
Do you agree that “every being is doing its best to gladly talk about God?” What follows from that?
Do you experience the Word manifesting in every creature? It is a good antidote to Jesusolatry isn’t it?
One River, Many Wells: Wisdom Springing from Global Faiths
Matthew Fox calls on all the world traditions for their wisdom and their inspiration in a work that is far more than a list of theological position papers but a new way to pray—to meditate in a global spiritual context on the wisdom all our traditions share. Fox chooses 18 themes that are foundational to any spirituality and demonstrates how all the world spiritual traditions offer wisdom about each.“Reading One River, Many Wells is like entering the rich silence of a masterfully directed retreat. As you read this text, you reflect, you pray, you embrace Divinity. Truly no words can fully express my respect and awe for this magnificent contribution to contemporary spirituality.” –Caroline Myss, author of Anatomy of the Spirit