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In my perception, the word play is like a lighthouse flashing critical illumination along hazardous rocky shorelines. Without play, darkness envelops the psyche, and encrusts inner faculties with viper-like stings, frequently self-imposed. With play’s bag of surprises, however, creativity surges; glee mounts as more of the beautiful reveals herself, in nature, art works, design, even a forgiven child with a skinned knee.   

A deeper look at play seems to suggest something of the Sacred, at work. The Old New Testament uses the verb, play, seventy-three times: with musical instruments, with harlotry, with performing, and with children. Each expression of play draws upon the individual’s imagination and uplifts listeners or warns them to wake up and observe the Law of Moses. 

A fifth use of this verb differs from the others. From the book of Proverbs (8:29-31) comes,

                    …when he laid the foundations of the earth

I was by his side, a master craftsman,

delighting him day after day,

ever at play in his presence,

at play everywhere in his world

delighting to be with the sons of man.

Within the essence of God, there seems to be a player who enjoys being with us, who takes delight with our efforts to play/ or co-create with him.

I would have loved to have known the sage who received this insight and gave it expression, centuries ago.

Elizabeth Lighthouse – Portland, Maine

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