It is related that one day they came upon Majnun sifting the dust, and his tears flowing down. They said, "What doest thou?" He said, "I seek for Layli." They cried, "Alas for thee! Layli is of pure spirit, and thou seekest her in the dust!" He said, "I seek her everywhere; haply somewhere I shall find her."
(Baha'u'llah, The Seven Valleys, p. 6)

Who is Layli and why do we seek her?

What is a Seeking Layli Event?

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

from mountain to valley

I know not in what wilderness they roam! Do they not see that they are embarked upon a journey from which there is no return? How long will they wander from mountain to valley, from hollow to hill?      (Baha'u'llah)

Probably the search for Layli is a journey which lasts a lifetime and once set on the search one should not anticipate a return.
However, on Saturday 10th July we are going to take the wandering a bit further than usual as we will head off without knowing where we are going.  We know where we will meet - at the upper car park for Liffey Falls at 12 noon.  But then comes the decision. If it has snowed on the plateau we will continue upwards to the lakes because many are convinced Layli could not resist a snowball fight (and some of us have never seen snow).   But if it, disappointingly, is a clear warm day we will satisfy ourselves with the mighty Liffey Falls.
Liffey Falls and the different access access routes are described here
and here

Please bring some picnic food, warm clothing (it is the middle of winter), and a toleration for, or preferably a willingness to join in some devotions.

If you need a lift, can offer a lift, or are doubtful of the directions and would like to follow someone please contact me,

the stillness of the mighty woods (report)

"In the stillness of the mighty woods, man is made aware of the divine," St. Barbe Baker

Well we headed off to a mighty wood to test St Barbe Baker's words. And are they true?  Well yes and no.
In the camaraderie and rather formal beauty of our meeting place at Lake Huntsman there was certainly a good feeling.
 That intensified as we reached Scott's Lookout

and perhaps as we said and sang prayers at there on the edge of the mighty forest looking out over the Meander Valley we felt something special.  Who knows, perhaps we were aware of the divine.

But when we crossed the bridge to the start of Split Rock Track
and entered as a group into the mighty forest.

it was perhaps the wonders of creation that grabbed our attention.
We were diligent in our search. Here one of our number checks every frond for a sign of Layli.

And we marveled at roots, rocks, ferns, and, of course, fungi

Is there a difference between the divine and the wonder of the divine creation?  Perhaps:
"He is really a believer in the Unity of God who recognizeth in each and every created thing the sign of the revelation of Him Who is the Eternal Truth, and not he who maintaineth that the creature is indistinguishable from the Creator."

So we should not maintain that the beauty of Meander Forest was indistinguishable from the Divine, but again:
"So pervasive and general is this revelation that nothing whatsoever in the whole universe can be discovered that doth not reflect His splendor."    (Baha'u'llah)
Perhaps it would be true to say that in the stillness of the mighty forest we were made aware of the reflections of His splendour.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

the stillness of the mighty woods

"In the stillness of the mighty woods, man is made aware of the divine," St. Barbe Baker

This quote from Richard St Barbe Baker, founder of "Men of the Trees" was recently used in the "Soul Food" devotional at the Baha'i Centre in Hobart and therefore at several other devotionals which use the same program in other localities.
We however have decided to test it not just read it.  One of the mightiest woods around Northern Tasmania is the Meander Forest Reserve so we will be heading there on Saturday the 12th of June meeting at 12 noon at the picnic ground beside Huntsman lake.
Even if the day is windy, there should be stillness in the gullies and valleys that cut the tiers.  Will we be aware of the divine?  Will we find Layli.  the answer will, of course, be revealed in due time on this blog but why wait?  Why not join us?  
The directions are fairly simple if you can get to Deloraine.  Take the road to Meander (turn South beside the river on the Launceston side) and go all the way to and through Meander. Continue on til the tarmac stops and a hundred metres or so beyond that the picnic spot is on the left looking like this:
 It is more a meeting place than a destination.  For a description of the various possible walks available try

Last time we ate at the picnic spot, prayed at Scott's Lookout and walked on Split Rock track.  We could do the same or try something else.
A very serious word of warning.  It will be much colder than the cities - assume it will snow and dress appropriately.  Also, these are serious bush walks if you go all the way - most of us will be content to potter about the start of the tracks.  We would not recommend trying to complete any of the walks unless you are well equipped and in a party with at least one experienced walker. 

Our previous trip to the forest was reported here

Repeating the gaze at Notley Gorge

"...abide under the shadow of the green and goodly Tree"    (Baha'u'llah)

Again, incorporating our expedition into a Baha'i camp proved less than successful.  After the exertions of the camp it was a small group who made rather a short trip to Notley Fern Gorge.  Still Notley  as always is under the shadow of many green and goodly trees and, if your eyes are as Baha'u'llah recommends 
"...ever expectant to witness the wonders of God's mercy and eager to behold the splendours of His beauty."   there is always something there to remind us of the beauty of God's creation.  Last time it was fungi that caught our attention - this time it was more the mosses and lichens,  Without more ado here are some photos.