This Present Moment Trotta

The text is set to emphasize the universal message of a letter over 500 years old, with a message as timeless as ever. The theme of finding the sacred in the present moment appears in all of the major mystical traditions of those who seek union with the divine. The text speaks to the incarnation of the divine in every moment, a message that is appropriate not just during a particular season, but every day of the year. The work is attributed to an Italian Friar named Giovanni Giocondo though the British Museum is unable to conclusively authenticate this. In the Theosophical Quarterly (July 1910) the question was raised as to provenance of the letter dated 1510. “Is it a genuine antique, or a modern composition cast in an antique form?” Most poignantly the author answers the question as follows: ”I, for one cannot tell you. Nor do I see that it matters. The only important question is whether the message is true or not; and I think it is – profoundly true. Although the text is suitable for year round use, its association with the Christmas season in the United States in the 20th century was due in large part to a small printing of three issues in 1920’s totaling only 250 copies in all. The letter was published under the title: “A medieval letter from Italy: being an expression of Christmas wishes from Emerson Knight.” The association with Christmas has ever since been inseparable.

This Present Moment

The gloomy world is but a shadow.
Behind it, yet within our reach, is joy.
There is radiance and glory in the darkness,
could we but see;
and to see, we have only to look.

Life is so full of meaning,
So full of purpose and so full of beauty,
You may find that earth but cloaks your heav’n,
Courage to claim it that is all.

Life is so generous a giver,
but we,
judging its gifts by their covering,
cast them away as ugly or heavy or hard.
Remove the covering, and you will find beneath it a living splendour,
woven of love, by wisdom, with power.

No Heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in it to-day.
No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present little moment.
In this moment, take peace, take heav’n, take courage!

But courage you have and the knowledge that we are pilgrims together
Wending through the unknown country home.