Tuesday 22 September 2009

weaving a web of attentiveness

cobwebs on gate

One of the quiet joys of an autumn morning is seeing cobwebs backlit by the rising sun. This September it seems as though every vertical surface outside the manse is home to a myriad of spiders, each  remaking its web as needs be  in readiness for the return of the light. This morning these two webs at the top of the metal gate into the garden made an interesting and thought-provoking image.

I wonder whether these webs are the work of the same spider? If not, what has happened to the one responsible for the web on the left? Has it moved to a different location, or is it now dead? The contrast between these two orb webs could not be more striking. One is unattended and is but a torn remnant of  its once pristine beauty and completeness. The other is fresh, newly spun and glistening in its natural perfection. Its close weave will catch whatever small insect comes into contact with the silken plane of attentiveness. The other won’t. The gaps are such as to render it useless.

If we want to sense the presence of God in our lives we would do well to weave a web of attentiveness between the routines, relationships and opportunities which each new day brings.  This is an intentional work of perception and awareness. It is best done with a sense of expectant gratitude. If our spiritual web is in a state of disrepair and the gaps are too big and numerous, a disappointing end result -  the seeming absence of God - should not come as a surprise. It takes our loving openness, freshly spun and carefully woven each new day, to catch sight of the love which comes to greet us.

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