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Out of the Darkness: Finding Querencia

It is my belief that all of humanity is being called at this time to bear witness. As this thing we call Covid-19 runs roughshod over long-established habits of lifestyle and movement, forcing us all to rethink our ways, and means, so too is there another pandemic ravaging humanity with rage and discontent, running roughshod over long-established habits of social interaction, articulating itself in protest, sometimes with violence, and always with demand. Power it seems, does only yield to demand, and at this time in our existence, demand is being voiced. And we, you and I who may have chosen to embark on the high road of Spiritual Awareness and Spiritual Practice, we are being called to bear witness. We are being called to testify to the truth, and we are being called to be the light in the darkness. We are being called to be the wayfarers and the companions, the pray-ers and the prayers; the Practitioners called to craft the Holy Wholeness out of the appearance of fractured dislocation and disillusionment.

I know something of disillusionment. I know something of rage and discontent, and I know something about light.

For over thirty years I have brought light to stage and screen, illuminating dramas and comedies, dancers, actors and musical celebrants. For over thirty years I have artfully brought illumination to all manner of artistic expression, lending nuance and color to forms static and in motion, and with emotion, I have evoked emotion, instigated emotion, drawn on the emotion lying dormant inside the unknown, waiting to be revealed in the light of my own creation. For over thirty years I have been an arbiter of light, crafting artificial illumination, all while exploring the shadow self of my own being. In the world of lighting design, there is a saying, “Shadows are my ally.” Now, as I move toward the light of Holy Wholeness I recognize and realize, shadows are the ally of us all.

Today we see mothers linked arm in arm, standing in solidarity against the forces of oppression who, armed with military-grade hardware, have been unleashed against their sons and daughters. Today, as we are forced to bear witness to the murder of Breonna Taylor, the murder of George Floyd, the murder of Elijah McClain, and the murderous assault on Jacob Blake by those sworn to protect us, we are also being gifted to bear witness to the coming together of those five hundred mothers, joined arm in arm and saying no. We are being gifted to bear witness to learning circles composed of white folk, and composed by white folk who are being called in by each other to account for their own privilege, and called in by each other to dismantle the very structures of white supremacy which have for generations been the source of that privilege, and the fuel of today’s discontent. Power yields only to demand. Together we are being called to bear witness to the shadows that are our ally, and we are being called to bear witness to the demand to which current structures of power must and will yield.

Staring deeply into the abyss

I see staring back into me

the shadow of myself

That black outline of my wretched being

Beckoning me

To voice my demand

Calling me in

To bring light out from the darkness

Staring into the abyss

The abyss stares back into me

With fear

And terrible dread

And a cold wind blows

From deep down

In its limitless depth

Breathing into me a dare.

Whispering softly from the darkness,

The Abyss utters this demand:

Would you see me as your ally

And be blind to the face of your enemy

Could you see my darkness

As your friend

And be blind to enmity?

Dare you be blind to otherness

Seeing only One in light


In the Storm of rage and discontent

Will you bring illumination to the night?

Will you empower Love

To empower you….

Shadows are our ally in the struggle to reveal light. Shadows are our ally in the effort to bring illumination to the hearts and minds of humanity, and shadows are our ally as we strive to bring clarity to the chaos all around us; yet it is light that we serve, and it is light that we are carrying forth into this new day dawning all around us. It is light that we are, and it is light that we are here to share. So when the darkness seems too daunting, the chaos too dissonant, and the madness of everyday reality far too overwhelming, where is it that we, light bearers that we be, turn to? To what light goes the light overwhelmed by darkness ? It is to the shadows of course, to the quiet twilight of Querencia within. Inwardly we travel, to that place deep in our being, where the still small voice whispers Truth, Love, Peace, and Restoration. Querencia is the place in the heart where peace is made manifest and light is born; pure and unfettered from the dark expanse of infinite possibility, illuminating the path of restoration and renewal. Querencia is the safe space, the brave place, and the stronghold where, within the heart itself, the heart finds the strength to carry on.

In the battle for peace

The Peaceful Warrior

Is Still

Aware but not anxious

Not Thinking

Yet Not Dreaming


Staring into the abyss

Of their own Undoing


Recognizing they may be undone

Yet knowing

They are eternal

Peace is eternal

Knowing they are Love

Love is Eternal

The Peaceful Warrior


Love is Eternal


Staring into the eyes of the destroyer

Knowing they may be destroyed

Knowing Love cannot be harmed


The Peaceful Warrior knows Peace.

The Peaceful Warrior is


And in that moment

The destroyer knows too

Peace cannot be defeated


The Destroyer bows


Knowing it has lost

Fear has been vanquished

And so too has destruction.

Collapsed under its own weight

The weight of illusion and untruth.

Darkness must yield to Light

As Light’s ally



And So It Is.

Dare we now, staring into the abyss of our own malevolent creation, choose to empower Love to empower us? Dare we demand that current power structures yield to their own demise, fertilizing the soil of the new day with the detritus of useless patriarchy, futile violence, obscene racism and war mongering, and maniacal fear and acquisitive anxiety: the forever obsolete detritus of toxic individualism, xenophobia and roiling, simmering hatred and dread. Let us grow from the compost of this smoldering waste the fertile crops of Unity and Love and a World That Works for Everyone. Dare we, at this time, be the islands of sanity present to sustain Love? Dare we, finding Querencia within our own hearts, hold the brave, safe space of Querencia for the collective soul of humanity?

Only from the smoking ash of ruin does the Phoenix rise.

We are all new here.

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