Sunday 30 July - Dancing Standing Still
Richard Rohr in his book, ‘Dancing Standing Still’ brings new perspective to the invitation extended to us in Psalm 46 to ‘Be still and know that I am God.’
In my first read of this text I imagine myself in a place of stillness, a passive rest trusting that God will do what God will do.
However building on the idea posed by 2nd century Greek mathematician Archimedes, ‘Give me a lever and a place to stand, and I shall move the world’
Rohr paints a picture that enlarges this waiting space to move organically into an active role. This place to stand is our anchor, a contemplative stance where the world around us with all of it cries can be viewed from a place of peace. From that place our action, or our lever is our response to what we have viewed while watching, what our hearts and minds gravitate towards giving ourselves to. Our action is not forged out of reactionary fear, based on the cries of the world around me, rather ofa silence born out of a deep seated place of trust in God.
The book goes on to unpack the idea of ‘healing the World from a place of prayer.’ The focus here is on Contemplative prayer which (as described above) is two-pronged. It is born out of silence and moves into action. Eventually it finds itself existing in a cyclic rhythm, what is noticed invokes an action which in itself invites reflection, a withdrawal back into a silent space from which movement springs again. It’s a dance, hence the title of Rohr’s book.
Rohr offers another helpful saying which for me encapsulates beautifully the invitation extended in Psalm 46; to “be still and still moving”
Where once I expected God to do all of the moving on my behalf, now I am aware of God’s invitation into the dance where together we can change the world, I just let God do the leading.
Living from this place of contemplative prayer, I can in fact move and change my world.