3 May
Posted in: CDL, Poems
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Let the Room Hold Them

Grief TableJack Kornfield was one of the teachers at the CDL training retreat I attended. He said that as Community Dharma Leaders, we may be called upon to perform weddings, funerals, blessings, rites of passage, dedication ceremonies, baby blessings, and many other types of rituals to mark significant events in the lives of our sangha members. So he taught us the elements that make up these rituals and then we practiced a few of them.

The most moving was the most simple: a grief ritual, in which we each went out into the desert to collect a stone for someone we wanted to honor — someone who had died or who had suffered a great loss — and then we brought the stone back into the hall, where we each knelt and placed it on a small table, in the middle of which Jack had lit a candle. (See photo above)

No official words were spoken. We simply sat together in a sacred silence.

In honor of which I offer:

In a Room with Five People, Six Griefs
by Jane Hirshfield

In a room with five people, six griefs.

Some you will hear of, some not.

Let the room hold them, their fears, their anger.

Let there be walls and windows, a ceiling.

A door through which time

changer of everything

can enter.

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