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As we behold, we actively transform the image.
Martin Buber’s “I and Thou” relationship, the Seven Arrows Medicine Wheel, as well of the saint’s lives are connected by their ability to bring us to higher levels of perception. We experience a form of relational transformation as we are lifted by sacred practices to see the interconnected nature of life and the divine working within all relationships. Spiritual traditions use different languages and representations. Religion can be understood as what we “rely” on, or what we are dependent upon and have confidence in.
Encountering the divine can happen as we journey through life. There is the inner and the outer journey. We can encounter great thinkers through their writings, and we can encounter sacred places through pilgrimages. There are different ways to gain higher knowledge that often transforms our perceptions. When we are lifted, we can see the sacredness of life.
The pain experienced by orphaned and adopted children is understood as the primal wound. It is a wounding that happens when babies are separated at birth from their mothers. The term “innocents” is used in reference to the Biblical story of the innocent babes that were killed by Herod. When I journeyed to Florence, Italy, I went to visit the first orphanage that was built in the 1400’s, known as The Hospital of the Innocents. Connecting with this historical site that received and cared for abandoned children brought me to a sacred place. As I prayed and gave thanks for all those who have cared for the innocents, I became even more consciously aware of the pain of mothers and children who have suffered the consequences of being separated at birth.
This inner and outer journey provided an encounter with higher knowledge through the historical understanding of the evolution of caring for abandoned children as well as the spiritual experience of connecting with these life histories. Through the ages, children like me, and my sister Cathy, have been cared for when the circumstances of our births didn’t allow us to remain in our families. Visiting the museum and attending the mass held there, allowed me to sublimate my personal experience through journeymanship, connecting even more deeply with the story of the innocents.
Here is the link to the museum:
Here is a documentary film that tells the story of the innocents.
The Innocents of Florence: The quest to save 600,000 children
Author of Homing In: A Story Mandala Connecting Adoption, Reunion and Belonging