Saturday, 2 April 2016

A-Z Challenge Day 2 - Benedictus, Beauty

On to Day 2 - Beauty - Dictionary  definitions:A combination of qualities, such as shape, colour, or form, that pleases the aesthetic senses, especially the sightcombination of qualities that pleases theintellect

Only skin deep? In the eye of the beholder? The older I get, the more words just don't do it for me. Maybe simply feeling without wasting precious time trying to encapsulate  is enough. Encountering beauty through nature; the photo above is from our epic trip through the Highlands five years ago, am apt example. I'll leave the capturing to those more articulate and able than myself.

One such  is the late John O'Donohue, poet, artist and philosopher, heard here in one of his last interviews before his sudden and premature death in 2008, talking with Krista Tippett on The Inner Landscape of Beauty. I especially love his definition of spirituality as the art of homecoming.

I always associate him with Greenbelt, though, sadly, I was never to  hear him talk, as I didn't begin to attend the  festival until summer of 2008. I do though treasure a copy  what I think may have been one of his last works: the anthology of blessings: Benedictus, and we also had a poem from his Conamara Blues, read out at my mother-in law's - Mr GP's mother's funeral.

To me, John had the ability to hold the tension between both the beauty and the dark side of our natures and of the world, yet at the same time open our  minds to new landscapes, the which we could hardly have imagined were possible. I encountered his works for the first time when I was transitioning between churches and traditions. To discover such a resource then, an antidote to some of the dogmatic certainties which I so struggled with, was indeed a blessing.


  1. Very few people have the ability to stay strong and composed in times of tribulation. thank God John is one. Keep it going. God bless

  2. He does sound like a fascinating man; so sorry the world lost him so prematurey!


  3. Such a beautiful tribute to a remarkable individual! Thank you for sharing!

    Happy A to Z day 2! Ninga Minion @YolandaRenee from
    Defending The Pen
    Murderous Imaginings

  4. God Bless. It is sad to say goodbye to such a great person.

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    1. Yes,indeed. His work really is worth reading.


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