Monday 7th March, 2022
Barbara Holmes, Joy Unspeakable: Contemplative Practices of the Black Church (Fortress Press, 2017), 12.
Image: Aaron Birch, Aukland, NZ, instagram.com/aaronb.visuals
This quote is from Barbara Holmes' Joy Unspeakable: Contemplative Practices of the Black Church (Fortress Press, 2017), 12 - see here. With degrees in theology, law, education and sociology, Holmes' areas of interest are broad. Well-known as a Black theologian, writer and activist, she is renowned as a scholar of African American spirituality, mysticism, cosmology and culture, and a core Faculty member of Richard Rohr's Centre for Action and Contemplation (CAC) - see here. For an introduction to Barbara Holmes talking about fishing as a contemplative practice in her life, see a lovely 3 minute video, here. In a daily meditation from Rohr's CAC in May, 2018, he writes that 'While there has been a growing interest in Christian contemplation over the last several decades, much of it has been through a Euro-centric lens, focusing primarily on silence and solitude. [In Joy Unspeakable] Holmes draws attention to the many unsilent, embodied, and communal contemplative practices that can lead us into the gift of contemplation, union with God.' To read the rest of the day's meditation, including Holmes' wonderful poem 'Joy Unspeakable', see here, and if you've never got round to signing up to receive the daily email, you can also sign up to do so from that page. For Barbara Holmes' latest book, Crisis Contemplation: Healing the Wounded Village (CAC Publishing, 2021), which explores how crisis contemplation emerges in communities of colour, and offers a roadmap for spiritual connection, healing trauma and being grounded in our shared cosmic origins, see here. Or to listen to her podcast, The Cosmic We, which goes beyond race and racism to consider relatedness as the organizing principle of the universe, exploring our shared cosmic origins through a cultural lens that fuses science, mysticism, spirituality, and the creative arts, see here.