Awen and the Buddhist

Awen SunToday, I just wanted to share one of “those” moments of understanding, that transcendent connection that flits between whatever means we humans use to grapple with the divine, regardless of our faiths.

At the risk of bragging, I am married to a most wonderful man who also happens to be a Buddhist (you should have seen the wedding).  It’s a particular blessing to be able to share one’s spiritual observations with one’s partner, even if you’re both coming from pretty different paradigms.  My husband has happily come equipped with a “universal translator” when it comes to spirituality, which I’m slowly getting better at integrating myself.  In general, it allows us an easy give and take between Druid and Buddhist thinking.

At least among revival druids, the most fundamental goal of the Druid path is the fostering of the Awen, that divine and fleeting inspiration which strikes bards, mystics, and madmen.  My husband is familiar with the three-rayed symbol, and for some reason this morning (I love the way his mind leaps from the sock drawer to the sacred) he asked me which god had the Awen as a symbol.

“Well,” I said, “Awen doesn’t really belong to any of the gods.  It’s more a force, a flow of inspiration.”

“So it’s the Dao,” he said.

I thought a moment.  “No, not exactly.”  I put on my Buddhist thinking cap.  “It’s like this.  If the Dao is a river, think of Awen as a single current flowing within the waters of that river.”

He stopped mid-sock rummage and stared at me.  “You’re not the Buddhist.”  He shook his head, smiling.  “Where do you come up with this stuff?”

I grinned.  “Blame it on being before breakfast.”

–A.V.

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