In your clay body, things are coming to expression and to light
that were never known before, presences that never came to
light or shape in any other individual.
To paraphrase Heidegger, who said, "Man is a shepherd of being,"
we could say, "Man is a shepherd of clay."
You represent an unknown world that begs you to bring it to voice.
Often the joy you feel does not belong to your individual biography
but to the clay out of which you are formed.
At other times, you will find sorrow moving through you,
like a dark mist over a landscape.
This sorrow is dark enough to paralyze you.
It is a mistake to interfere with this movement of feeling.
It is more appropriate to recognize that this emotion belongs more
to your clay than to your mind.
It is wise to let this weather of feeling pass;
it is on its way elsewhere.
Regardless of how modern we seem, we still remain ancient,
sisters and brothers of the one clay.
In each of us a different part of the mystery becomes luminous.
To truly be and become yourself,
you need the ancient radiance of others.
(© John O'Donohue. All rights reserved.)
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