Stories abound around the world about the sky being an abode for the Divine. Christians sing “Glory to God in the highest” and “you alone are the Most High” in their Liturgies and in the story of the “Transfiguration” Jesus went to the top of a mountain with three of his friends and was shown glorious as they all entered inside a cloud. Christians also tell the story of Jesus “ascending into heaven” after his death and resurrection. Jesus taught his disciples to pray like this; “Our Father who art in heaven…” And for Paul, the first Christian theologian and cosmic mystic, the Christ is the one who unites “everything on earth, under the earth and in the heavens.”
Meister Eckhart makes deep connections between the sky and earth when he declares the heavens “invade the earth, energize it and make it sacred.” He says the heavens “are continually running, running into peace” and seek repose. Eckhart recognizes the stretching that the human undergoes in searching for the Divine: The divine spirit in the human soul is not easily satisfied. It storms the firmament and scales the heavens trying to reach the Spirit that drives the heavens. Because of this energy everything in the world grows green, flourishes, and busts into leaf. But the spirit is never satisfied. It presses on deeper and deeper into the vortex, further and further into the whirlpool, the primary source in which the spirit has its origin.
The Hebrew Bible tells us Moses encountered God at the top of a mountain, Mount Sinai, and such glory emerged that he had to cover his face with a veil, for the “skin of his face was shining” so. Psalm 99 tells us that God, a “mighty King, lover of justice and establisher of equity” spoke to Moses, Aaron and Samuel “out of the pillar of cloud.”
The psalmist recommends that we “look up” to the mountain and to the heavens to see God– especially when things are not going so well on earth. When we are down, we are to look up to the vastness of God’s sky.
Adapted from Matthew Fox, The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine, p. 4.
Fox, Meditations with Meister Eckhart, p. 70.
To read a transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Queries for Contemplation
How does today’s science and cosmology affirm Eckhart’s observations that the heavens “invade the earth, energize it and make it sacred”?
The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine
To awaken what Fox calls “the sacred masculine,” he unearths ten metaphors, or archetypes, ranging from the Green Man, an ancient pagan symbol of our fundamental relationship with nature, to the Spiritual Warrior….These timeless archetypes can inspire men to pursue their higher calling to connect to their deepest selves and to reinvent the world.
“Every man on this planet should read this book — not to mention every woman who wants to understand the struggles, often unconscious, that shape the men they know.” — Rabbi Michael Lerner, author of The Left Hand of God
Meditations with Meister Eckhart: A Centering Book
A centering book by Matthew Fox. This book of simple but rich meditations exemplifies the deep yet playful creation-centered spirituality of Meister Eckhart, Meister Eckhart was a 13th-century Dominican preacher who was a mystic, prophet, feminist, activist, defender of the poor, and advocate of creation-centered spirituality, who was condemned shortly after he died.
“These quiet presentations of spirituality are remarkable for their immediacy and clarity.” –Publishers Weekly.