Have you ever read a book and thought “Wow, I could have written that!” Well, that is exactly what happened to me recently. I did not feel that I could have written it in the sense that I thought the author did not express the concept as well as I could have. On the contrary, it was a wonderfully well written book and the basic premise was eloquently expressed. The book is “A Home for the Soul, A Guide for Dwelling with Spirit and Imagination” by Anthony Lawlor. I felt as if I could have written it in that it so clearly and so beautifully articulated so many thoughts about a home being a haven and a chance for inspiration and renewal that I have contemplated over the years as I created and lived in my home.
Rather than try and review the book or attempt to summarize it, I am going to just give you a few quotes from the book and then recommend that if the tidbits here stir something in you, go and get the book. It is a gem.
“Home offers a practical setting for fostering soul in concrete ways. It serves the requirements of shelter and food while simultaneously addressing our deeper needs for love, wisdom and establishing a place in the world. The bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and other rooms are indispensable to the basic functions of sleeping, bathing, eating, and gathering. They are also places where the soul can receive the bed’s restfulness, the bath’s invigoration, and the stove’s nourishment.”
“The most immediate way of deepening soulfulness in a home is through cleaning and repair. Housework, however, is denigrated in our society, and we usually overlook the power of purification and maintenance in fostering soul. The intent of most spiritual practices, in fact, is the transformation of disorder into order.”
“A home for the soul would not be complete without some type of garden. The spirit cannot dwell in wholeness unless it is touched by the harmony and beauty of plants, soil and the natural process of growth.”
“The bedroom is shaped by the peace of sleep, the flights of dream, and the charged energies of sexuality. Despite its quiet image, the bedroom contains unfathomable mysteries and power.”
“The kitchen is the core of home. Deep within our bones is the ancestral memory of gathering about the ancient fire for warmth, food, friendship, and regaining a felt connection to the soul.”