The Sacred ‘neath Your Soul!

Along with Dr. Larry Rasmussen, we said “Amen” to this prayer…

Lord of skies, you walk among us
in the plain brown soil of earth.
How you’ve chosen to be present
often seems of little worth.
You have chosen common bushes,
kindled them with heaven’s fire,
spoken through unlikely prophets
heralding your love’s desire…
Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads.

~ Henry David Thoreau

Dr. Rasmussen spoke at the Festival of Faiths Interfaith Breakfast in Louisville this week.

“…the soul is the animating element of our humanity and the way we touch the divine.  But the spelling is wrong.  Soul is properly spelled s-o-l-e.  Where is your soul/sole? On the bottom side of your bare feet, in touch with the sacred ‘neath your sole, the soil.”

One more snippet to make sure you read the treasure below —

“But let’s not lose the main point: cultus (worship), culture and agriculture—we belong to these as the miraculous clods who are cultivators by calling.  We are here to maintain the fertility of the soil for on-going life, to “renew the face of the earth,” in the phrase of Ps. 104, and to give glory to God. The ancients would have understood Wendell Berry well.  “In talking about topsoil,” Berry says, “it is hard to avoid the language of religion.”   So put aside the superstition that soul and soil are separate categories.  Decent land-use is not about economics, it’s about cultivation and the state of our souls.”

We laughed. We listened. And at the end of his talk, glancing at people standing in ovation, I noted I was not the only earthling moved to tears at the beauty and truth in his words. Larry agreed without hesitation to have his talk published here, so consider yourself blessed!

Download the PDF of his talk on Sacred Soil