I wrote this DM two days ago and now it seems the Irish fishermen won. I am sharing it as I wrote it then since the story is still the same: David and Goliath; courage and spiritual warriorhood; healthy vs. unhealthy masculine; St. Brigid’s feast day.
Yesterday we meditated on Joy as taught by Thich Nhat Hanh and Thomas Aquinas. One reason we are held back from the joy of life is a patriarchal prejudice in favor of pessimism and cynicism that derives from power-over/power-under dynamics. Vengeance, hatred, anger that morphs into violence, can dominate if we let it. It begins in the human heart and culminates in war and a compulsion to dominate.
In the past few days we learned of a pope who lied about moving pedophile priests from parish to parish as a bishop; of a gang rape of a woman in India who was afterward paraded around the city of New Delhi; of an authoritarian leader in Russia surrounding a sovereign country with 135,000 troops threatening to make war on it. Plenty of news of the unholy and toxic masculine on the march.
But we have also learned of the passing of a truly holy man, Thich Naht Hanh, a man of deep virtue, who, as Thomas Aquinas teaches, is greater than a miracle and whose truths he taught were “revelations” of truth we call God. A man committed to the best in humanity, our capacity for truth and for healing and being healed and for compassion. For living out the Buddha and/or the Christ within us.
And today a fleet of Irish fishermen are heading out to fish in the sea where Putin’s hyper-masculinity wants to do war games instead. These fishermen and spiritual warriors, speaking straightly and directly, dare to take on the forces of Putin’s imperial navy with no weapons other than their courage and commitment to continue their vocations to fish for the sake of their families’ survival.
In doing so, they are creating a story being seen and heard around the world of David vs. Goliath in our times, of the power of good hearts vs. the power of bad hearts.
It is no coincidence that the Irish fishermen are embarking on their dangerous and brave act on the day of St. Brigid, a champion of the Divine Feminine, of the Healthy Masculine, of the alterative to patriarchal empires and the threats and fear and lies that sustain them.*
*John Philip Newell, Sacred Earth, Sacred Soul: Celtic Wisdom for Reawakening to What Our Souls Know and Healing the World, pp. 45-70.
See Matthew Fox, The Hidden Spirituality of Men: Ten Metaphors to Awaken the Sacred Masculine.
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: “Brigid’s Well.” Mariners are just one of the groups under St. Brigid’s protection. Photo by Annie Gormlie on Flickr.
Queries for Contemplation
What are you learning from the on-going story of the Irish fishermen setting out to fish and daring to interfere with Putin’s distorted masculine expressed in bullying of smaller countries?
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