The Divine is Portable, by Joy Collins

Commod What is the one thing you would not consider doing in our scary, tumultuous economy? Buy or sell a house unnecessarily. Yet that is exactly what Maggie and I did in the last month. On a whim, we checked out an open house in our neighborhood, knowing that our home is too small for two folks each needing a home office. We were surprised how wonderful this new place was – and “priced to sell” as they say. We put in an offer contingent on selling ours, and surprisingly, ours went two hours after the first open house.

In shock, we came to grips with the fact we are moving sooner vs. later. Mostly I am excited. But I am also experiencing this odd sense of dread. You see, I am a total homebody . I bond to my house like other people bond to humans. Newly single, I bought my current house seven years ago. It is very small, but light and open. Skylights, cathedral ceiling, few walls between the rooms, looking out on a beautiful ravine. As my friends say, it’s got that “wow factor.”  The new place is older, built in 1940. Mostly updated, with a wonderful office for me and many beautiful classic features. But the windows are small, there are no skylights, and it backs up to another house in our neighborhood. I began feeling buyer’s remorse.

While walking the dog I found myself envying the big picture windows in other homes. Noticing how many panes are in THEIR windows. Seeing the natural settings others have for back yards. Having thoughts about how much better they have it. Mild panic that maybe this new house isn’t for me.

Over these last several years, I find that if I MEDITATE through the obsessing versus ACTING on the obsessing, I do start to question what’s really going on for me. And in this case, it has to do with the feeling of  “home.”

I am most aware of the divine when I am outdoors, or looking out a window onto a tree, or feeling the sun beating through a sliding door onto my face. Below my panic about small windows in an old house lies a primal fear. Fear that I won’t be able to connect with the divine in my new abode. And that without that connection I will feel adrift. I will have lost that feeling of “home.” So I’ve been feeling deeply into where home in fact is. And I must say, when I analyze my past, I see I’ve been adaptable over a life filled with many moves and business travel. I’ve had many different houses, apartments and hotel rooms. Some with views, many without. I do re-bond if I let go of the old. And that’s because in the end, the divine is portable. She, and “home” are always within me. Gosh, how I keep needing to re-learn that lesson! And so going into our new place, I will try and remember John O’Donohue’s blessing:

May this house shelter your life.
When you come in home here,
May all the weight of the world
Fall from your shoulders.
May your heart be tranquil here,
Blessed by peace the world cannot give.
May this home be a lucky place,
Where the graces your life desires
Always find the pathway to your door.
May nothing destructive
Ever cross your threshold.
May this be a s safe place
Full of understanding and acceptance,
Where you can be as you are,
Without the need of any mask
Of pretense or image.
May this home be a place of discovery,
Where the possibilities that sleep
In the clay of your soul can emerge
To deepen and refine your vision
For all that is yet to come to birth.
May it be a house of courage,
Where healing and growth are love,
Where dignity and forgiveness prevail;
A home where patience of spirit is prized,
And the sight of the destination is never lost
Though the journey be difficult and slow.
May there be great delight around this hearth.
May it be a house of welcome
For the broken and diminished.
May you have the eyes to see
That no visitor arrives without a gift

And no guest leave without a blessing.
New House

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