Liminality

Updated: May 4


As a collective consciousness, humanity finds itself going through a rite of passage, that space between the stories, standing on the threshold between what was and what will be. This is known as liminal space, a transitional or transformative space between one point in time and the next. The etymology of liminal comes from the Latin root word “limen,” which means threshold. Whenever we are at a place during a time that is not usual for that space, or if we are in a liminal space for longer than necessary, it can feel unsettling.


Richard Rohr writes, “We are, as the Anthropologist Victor Turner (1920 – 1983) wrote, betwixt and between. In that space – which is mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual – we are destabilized, disoriented. The old touchstones, habits, and comforts are now past, the future unknown. We only wish such a thing to be over.” Rohr asks, “I wonder whether it is, then, also the realm of the Holy Spirit, our comforter, who does not take away the vastness and possibility of this opened-up threshold time, but invites us to lay down our fears and discomfort to see what else is there, hard as that may be…”


In the uncomfortableness of liminality, may we feel the Holy Spirit move with us in a way that we may not be aware of in more settled times. And as Rohr challenges, “We can enter into the liminal paradox: a disturbing time and space that not only breaks us down, but also offers us the choice to live in it with fierce aliveness, freedom, sacredness, companionship, and awareness of Presence. (Center for Action and Contemplation)

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