As the National Ploughing Championships begin in Ballintrane, Fenagh, Co. Carlow in these days we are reminded of the vitality of our daily relationship with nature and of the inter-relatedness of all life; whether ‘walking lightly on the Earth’ or working in and for this ‘Our Common Home’. Through this experience we have the opportunity to ‘keep pace’ with the rhythm of love and the soul of the earth. Love made visible.
It is fitting therefore, that once again this year we are present at this ‘National Ploughing Event’ sharing Presentation Life through the work and experience of Mount St. Anne’s Retreat and Conference Centre (Killenard), Portarlington, Co. Laois and the education experience of Presentation (Boarding) Thurles.
(If you are planning to be present come along and say ‘hello’ – we are in The Hub Area at Stand #44).
You work that you may keep pace with the earth and the soul of the earth.
For to be idle is to become a stranger unto the seasons,
and to step out of life’s procession, that marches in majesty and proud submission towards the infinite.
When you work you are a flute through whose heart the whispering of the hours turns to music.
Which of you would be a reed, dumb and silent, when all else sings together in unison?
Always you have been told that work is a curse and labour a misfortune.[…]
But I say to you that when you work you fulfil a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born,
And in keeping yourself with labour you are in truth loving life,
And to love life through labour is to be intimate with life’s inmost secret.
And what is it to work with love?
It is to weave the cloth with threads drawn from your heart,
even as if your beloved were to wear that cloth.
It is to build a house with affection,
even as if your beloved were to dwell in that house.
It is to sow seeds with tenderness and reap the harvest with joy,
even as if your beloved were to eat the fruit.
It is to charge all things you fashion with a breath of your own spirit,
And to know that all the blessed dead
are standing about you and watching. […]
Work is love made visible.
And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy.
For if you bake bread with indifference, you bake a bitter bread that feeds but half man’s hunger.
And if you grudge the crushing of the grapes, your grudge distils a poison in the wine.
And if you sing though as angels, and love not the singing, you muffle man’s ears to the voices of the day and the voices of the night.
Kahlil Gibran (1883 – 1931)
Find out about Nano Nagle and her evolving and dynamic legacy which provides inspiration for action by Presentation people in today’s world HERE
For further information about Mount St. Anne’s Retreat & Conference Centre see: http://www.mountstannes.com