Plus, I was practicing the harp a little, reading spiritual books, praying lots, and making another batch of Joyful Hermit Mystical Mist. Then there was the little supper with Fr. Vincent of Nigeria enjoying some soup and desserts. That meant experimenting with making Mystic Balls! I used the Mystical Mist in a variation of the Love of God Bourbon Balls; they ended up being Fr. Vincent’s favorite out of a goodly spread of pre-Lenten sweets!
For a week or so prior to the neck injury, I experimented with videos. These helped with inner stripping of self-perceptions. We usually never see ourselves as we are, on the outside, other than the brief and groggy early morning moments spent before the mirror trying to get our faces converted into something more pleasing to the sense of sight. So to see oneself speaking–how the mouth pronounces words, the eye movements when thinking and talking, as well as the stark reality of age and other such–well, it is humbling. The outer should not the inner make, although it can fight to try. The inner ought form and rule the outer, for the inner will be who we are eternally.
I shared more personally of thoughts. Opening up can be a good experiment. It helps to view and hear one’s thoughts being shared so as to have empathy and reality of what others are put through, seeing and listening, and how the thoughts may be interpreted clearly or not: always room to improve! Some of what I share includes discernment of hermit life in the religious aspect.
This hermit (maybe not quite so joyful with the neck pain and accompanying costs) is very pleased, if not joyful, to remain a rather uncommon hermit and not being drawn off into what is called a “canonically approved” hermit. Hermits, like anyone, need no official approval, not really, from anyone. God smiling upon us and a wise spiritual mentor or guide have proven adequate for centuries of hermits. It will suffice for this one.
Anyway, this is partly why I have not written much recently. This week I could barely write at all, as the letters to words keep getting jumbled in a brain that could not add or subtract and felt totally disoriented. It is amazing how neck injuries can really twist and crunch, affecting the head above it and the body below! But how wonderful that, mostly, necks heal over time in fortunate cases. The neck is like the Covenant with God. It provides the bond with and requisite, nourishing linkage of Christ the Head with the Body of Christ.