On the south slopes of Mauna Loa, in the place appropriately called Wood Valley is this beautiful old Buddhist Temple surrounded with verdant tropical forest.
We love to visit this little colorful temple. Once we even stayed there for few days in a room where the Dalai Lama slept several months earlier. We love to visit Marya and Michal, the soft and kind spoken temple keepers. We love to visit it for its unique atmosphere. For me that atmosphere is shaped by a mild yet deep whiff of incense. You can hardly recognize it directly in the air, but every piece of wood breathes out that ages old scent of prayers.
Indeed, there is something to be said about fragrant worship! For starters it is a subliminal reminder that faith and worship is about more than just intellect. The Bible also takes incense burning for granted in both the Old Testament as well as the New one.
AIR will be our theme this Sunday, and incense makes air visible and deeply sensual. Join us this Sunday, in this time of fear and anxiety, in a time of pandemic, join us again through our livestreamed video (https://livestream.com/rutgerschurchnyc) to worship with us, seeking together calm and hope.
And if you want to actively participate, prepare a stick of incense of your choice, or a scented candle or just any candle as we seek reassurance of loving fragrant divine breath.