We are here with the second issue of Cloverleaf and as the poem by Danny Best illustrates, have delved a little deeper into our spiritual legacies. The year 2017 has brought a whole lot of changes in the world. The political changes in various countries have come laden with surprises. Unhappily enough the political changes in America and elsewhere have come with violence and a loss of innocent lives.
Things like these make spiritually inclined and peace loving people very depressed and sad. While on one hand bloodshed continues unabated in the name of power and politics, on the other hand there are many enlightened and kind hearted people who are reaching out (to help those who are suffering the loss of lives, livelihoods, homes and dear ones) in an attempt to ameliorate their agony in a variety of ways. Writing for world harmony and a message of love and peace is what Cloverleaf embodies.
Cloverleaf is a hope, to dispel the doubt and darkness that are created by violence and greed, by showing the pathway of enlightenment through different cultures and religions.
As Seyyed Hossain Nasr has rightly said:
A Secular scientific and technological worldview, detached from spiritual and religious roots, has caused the earth to experience crisis and becoming close to its destruction point. Hence, religion needs to play its role to alleviate the crisis and prevent destruction.1
Looking deeper into oneself and one’s religious beliefs which helps one to see the spiritual unity of the universe is the essence of Cloverleaf.
The papers and articles in this issue testify to the hope and belief in the spiritual essence and unity of humanity and the universe.
Fred Lawlor in “The Spirit of SHEN” has aptly summed up the goals and objectives of SHEN as brought out in the September 2016 conference.
Dr. Shiv Talwar in “A Reflection on Genesis” has interpreted the concept of creation in the Bible in an in depth manner which fits in with the concept of God the Creator in other religions.
Dr. Rajendra Narain Dubey in “On Spiritual Education” dwells upon the valuable contributions of Indian seers and thinkers towards spiritual education and evolvement. He has also highlighted the timeless wisdom of the Vedas and Upanishads.
Aneela Azeemi in “Role of Spirituality in Nurturing the Positive Mind of a Whole Child” stresses upon the necessity of instilling in children at an early age, the spiritual values of compassion, love, understanding and acceptance specially in the modernised world of today and also to insure a peaceful world.
Barbara Bedford in “Understand that You are the Power” dwells on the miracle of DNA in the human cells as a carrier of Divine energy.
M. Darrol Bryant in “Recovering the Forgotten Contributions of Christian Mystics” brings out the spiritual and humanitarian messages of three Christian women mystics Hildegaard of Bingen (1098-1179), Julian of Norwich (1342-1423) and Teresa of Avila (1515-1582).Reading about them is an inspiration towards unity, harmony and peace.
Atif Khalil in “Intimate Strangers? Jewish-Muslim Relations and the Prospects for Dialogue” has attempted to uncover the common religious and cultural values across theological, legal and mystical intersections between Jewish and Muslim communities in order to foster respect, friendship and harmony between them.
Dennis Haskell’s poem “Monday Night Outing” which is a very small sample of his poetic oeuvre reflects truth and consciousness from a different cultural perspective.
In my poem “The Unspeakable Mystery” I have attempted to bring out the gendered perception of spirituality.
I sincerely hope that Cloverleaf is a source of hope, comfort, healing, education and enlightenment for all.
1 Nasr, Hossein.1996. Religion and the Order of Nature. New York: Oxford University Press.