Leonard Cohen, Parker Palmer: Cracks
Chorus of Anthem
“Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.”
Monday, November 7, 2016 Leonard Cohen died at age 82
This is Parker Palmer’s interpretation of Cohen’s famous song. “Whatever you’re concerned about right now, don’t go looking for the very best thing to do, then give up when you can’t find it. Offer the world whatever gifts you possess, no matter how imperfect, gifts that might move us a little bit closer to love truth, and justice. That’s how the light gets in, through our cracked imperfections.” (On Being with Krista Tippett, November 19, 2016). How often we do seem to desire a life a perfection instead of progress. Perfection can never be achieved. God can work through every one of our imperfect plans.
I also like to read this poem with my prayers before meeting a friend for spiritual direction. We spend time together as I keep looking for that little crack, ever so small, where there is a window to the soul that we both love so dearly and are spending time caring for and seeking during this brief hour. The crack is where we meet the Christ in each other. This is what we are really called to do, to keep looking for the Christ in each other that most often can only be found as we share or let others see the little cracks, the imperfections we have been living with.
Indeed, it is the cracks, our imperfections, our addictions, our losses, our resentments, our sins, our illnesses, our failings that lead us to seek out other spiritual friends for help. They are the cracks in the mask we have put on to keep others from seeing our true self, the wounded child within.
These cracks are the Good Fridays that can lead us to Easter and Resurrection.