on being empty, an essential question

15 Feb

eq: how can emptiness build trust?

When I was head of school, a parent came to see me one morning at 7 am. (Without an appointment. Her child, Jasmine, was living with the grandmother as the mum had some life controlling issues.) In the South Bronx this visit was quite unusual. Parents of high school students, in general, rarely came to school even when we requested a visit. Jasmine’s mother had given her a pair of UGG boots for the child’s birthday the week before. Mom had come to school to take the boots back. She wanted them that day.

… When I looked at Jasmine’s Mother, I thought, last week, the Mother gave just about everything she had to her daughter. She emptied herself but the anxiety of being empty filled her and she needed the boots back. She could not sit with the emptiness. Then I thought to Remus Lupin of the Harry Potter series. Here is he on emptiness,

“You can exist without your soul you know, as long as your brain and heart are still working. But you’ll have no sense of self anymore… no memory …anything. There’s no chance at all of recovery. You’ll just -exist. As an empty shell. And your soul is gone forever…lost.”
(Remus Lupin is speaking about a dementor’s-kiss)

I once heard someone say, “you must know nothing before u can learn something, and be empty before you can be filled, Is it not the emptiness of the bowl what makes it useful?”

All objects are empty of inherent existence.

They, we, may seem full and yet we are empty. Only the Spirit of God with God’s word can truly fill us. Then all the Judas’ of the world can never empty us with a kiss.

Jasmine kept the boots. She never knew from me that her mother came.
Fill us oh Lord, fill me O Lord.

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