January 30, 2009
The description under this picture has a profound significance for me in this season of my journey–in limbo between school and work, child and adult, past and future: “We each must enter into the belly of the whale and risk being spilled forth on unfamiliar shores. Resting in the body of the whale is just one letter away from resting in the body of the whole.”
I like this carving because it is reminiscent of a child in the womb. I feel like an unborn child these days, being knit together in the darkness, waiting quietly in the secure warmth of the Mother for the birthing pains to come. Sue Monk Kidd writes of being both the pregnant mother and the unborn child as we undergo transformation.
Both figures learn the same lesson–that waiting, far from the passive negation of responsibility and participation, can be the most active part of our spiritual journeys; it is during the waiting that we are moved, and it is only through the waiting that we can ever arrive at another place. This being still is what reveals God’s character to us, even as we reach new depths of our own. I’ve been looking for an image to help me define my journey. The cocoon, the winter-frozen field, and this carving that seems at once the whale and the womb–these are the creative expressions of my dark night of the soul. What are yours?