Sunday 4 April 2010

Practice Resurrection!

Easter Day: The Lord is risen indeed! Thanks to the 200+ with whom we lit a fire in Aylesbury Churchyard last night, and 37 souls who braved the wind and rain on the Bury field in Great Missenden this morning to proclaim that love is strong as death. The thought that true resurrection is not only an event, but can be a way of life, brought to mind a poem by Wendell Berry:

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more
of everything ready-made. Be afraid
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know.

So, friends, every day do something
that won't compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it.
Denounce the government and embrace
the flag. Hope to live in that free
republic for which it stands.
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man
has not encountered he has not destroyed.

Ask the questions that have no answers.
Invest in the millenium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.
Say that the leaves are harvested
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.

Put your faith in the two inches of humus
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion - put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come.
Expect the end of the world. Laugh.
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts.
So long as women do not go cheap
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep
of a woman near to giving birth?

Go with your love to the fields.
Lie down in the shade. Rest your head
in her lap. Swear allegiance
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos
can predict the motions of your mind,
lose it. Leave it as a sign
to mark the false trail, the way
you didn't go. Be like the fox
who makes more tracks than necessary,
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.


Ann said...

What I preached on, notes at my blog --- what are some ways for us to practice resurrection -- tonight I am thinking - don't watch the news - it brings on fear, anxiety, cynicism - the antithesis of resurrection.

Bishop Alan Wilson said...

Many thanks Ann, and for the sermon — I loved your illustration about the children]s kites in Haiti. I think you have a point about much convnetional news that isn't news (In flat earth news Neil Davies points out a lot of the stuff chucked at us isn't up to much journalistically, either): As the Blessed John Mayer puts it: "when you trust your television
what you get is what you got
cause when they own the information, oh
they can bend it all they want..."

Brad Evans said...

The Church of England is dying; it's no use trying to preach to people who aren't listening.

Bishop Alan Wilson said...

Brad, got it in one mate. It's 2 Cornthians 4:10-16 out there...

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