One of the brothers at Taize explained to me that life can be much easier for pilgrims while they are there. It’s easier to feel able to get out of bed in the morning, get chores done, get to church, join in with activities, eat, sleep. What I find most easily at Taize is liminality – a space where I can meet God, listen to God, let Him listen to me. And with that, everything else there falls into place.
But try as I might to resurrect that liminal space at home, I cannot. I can write prayer and liturgy. I can blog. I can go to church, and do the things that one associates with worshipping God; I can write Taize prayer services. I sit in silence; I chant; I read theology. But that liminality, a sense of being heard, being loved, is missing.
Here, I feel unsure of myself. People tell me I am angry, when that is not what I am feeling; that I must be pleased for them, when I am not. That I should be happy, or relaxed. When I feel tense and sad. I think. I used to to believe I could name what I was feeling. I am frightened of what lies ahead of me. I am exhausted.
There are many things that are different here. There isn’t the rhythm of the common prayer, in time or in space; I live not in community, but alone. We sit on chairs in church, and people talk to each other before services. But, even with these differences, there was liminality at church, once. A long time ago.
I haven’t found a time of day, a place which is liminal since returning from Taize. I want to. Sometimes there are glimpses; in a poem, a prayer said aloud, a candle flame. But it seems to happen less and less. And I am searching for it more, not less. I am trying hard to trust that God hears me. That He is in the searching. I want to feel heard again.