Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Language of the Soul

The rain started falling the moment I stepped out the door early this Sunday morning, on my way to retrieve the newspaper. It felt like spring, although I know it's not, and I welcomed the promise of a new day.

It also doesn't feel like Sunday today, since I spent the morning yesterday at church, at a funeral for a dear friend. Cynthia was in her 80s when she died this past week, and she was my friend--fellow writer, fellow alto in the choir, and the first woman to be elected to the vestry, back in 1957, decades before I met her.

It was interesting to be back in church, since I have not attended regularly for almost a year. The liturgy came back easily, however, and I found I didn't have to open the prayer book to know what words to say. I had been a member of that church for so long, the language has become embedded in my soul. In my body.

This morning, Sunday, I am on my way to yoga class. I will take an umbrella and walk in the rain, enjoying a relatively gentle summer storm, and think about the words the priest recited yesterday as we laid Cynthia to rest:

I am the Resurrection and I am Life...
As for me, I know that my Redeemer lives...
After my awaking, he will raise me up...
And in my body I shall see God.

I have heard those lines, from the service in the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer for "The Burial of the Dead, Rite Two," many, many times (too many in recent years), but had never listened to them with ears attuned to yoga practice: In my body I shall see God.

Although these words express the Christian belief in life everlasting, life even after the physical death of our body, I believe the words also hold a message for us in this life: continue your practice, say your prayers, and after your awakening, you will be raised up. And, in your body, you will see God.



  1. Only one comment. I cried. Beautiful sentiment and so true ~ We DO see God in our body. I'm sorry for the loss of a friend.

    Blessed, as always by your insight and calm soul. I may have found a yoga studio here to learn and grow. Not very popular in Oklahoma so it's nice to be back in Oregon where there are options.

  2. Brenda! So nice to see you have found my new blog. I thought of you as I wrote today's post, and am thrilled to hear that you've found a yoga studio near your new home.

    Blessed, as always, to be your friend.

  3. What lovely thoughts for a departed friend that will not not be departed forever - only a little while.