The birthing tub was full. Our midwife was in our living room readying her supplies and orienting her assistant. My daughter’s beloved Nonna was staying mostly silent, seemingly praying. I held Nicole as she swayed her body from side to side, listening to her inner voice, listening to our soon to arrive child, listening to the energy of motherhood so naturally present within her. It was within this moment of intense beauty and vulnerability that I heard it—the Song of Our Being.
Within Celtic Christianity we often hear of the Song present at the heart of Creation. It’s a song that has been sung since the very beginning, and nothing has been able to silence it—even now. This song is one that often goes unheard, because we are so busy with what we call our “everyday lives”. We have schedules to keep, duties to perform, people to impress, images to maintain. All of this gets pretty loud and often ensures that we will not hear that primal Song being sung.
It takes a falling away of all the things competing for our attention for us to begin to hear it. For Nicole, it took being in labor. At the moment when her body was experiencing something ancient and universal to all of Creation, she began to hear that sacred Song. She was so lost in that moment that she didn’t even notice that she had begun to sing it. Through each contraction, as her body swayed back and forth, I heard this beautiful song pour out from the depths of my wife as she journeyed onward toward the birth of our son, Kilian.
Celtic Christianity is a contemplative stream of the Christian River. The discipline of listening deep within ourselves, deep within all of Creation, and deep within the Scriptures is central to what it means to practice this ancient spirituality. It offers an invitation to be attentive to that which is most deeply true of our human existence.
As I held Nicole and listened to her sing this mysterious and beautiful Song, I knew I was on Holy Ground. Everything else did fall away. I was no longer concerned about how that comment might have made me look stupid, or whether they see me as successful, or how much work was waiting for me on my desk. It was as if I fell out of the illusion of my life and into a reality deeply connected to God and the rest of the Created world. A reality best articulated through the beauty of a Song.
Ben Edwards is a member of Celtic Way's Board of Directors. Read more about him here.