Richly Dight

Wednesday, October 5, 2011 – Arriving at the church, I entered and went straight to the window at the back of the sanctuary. I examined the ship and its setting in detail. The bottom of the lower window panel had a bible verse, styled in Old English lettering, like an illuminated manuscript: “TRUST HIM AND HE WILL HELP YOU STEER A STRAIGHT COURSE AND SET YOUR HOPE ON HIM: ECCLUS 2:6.”

I stepped away from the window and walked down the left side of the sanctuary to visit my favorite series of windows, a triptych depicting a bucolic scene of heaven and earth. I studied the bible verses at the bottom of the left and right panels, also styled in Old English lettering: “THE EARTH IS THE LORD’S, AND THE FULLNESS THEREOF” and “THE WORLD, AND THEY THAT DWELL THEREIN.” (shown at the top of this page) I sensed a connection between the two windows that merited some investigation and decided to return home to do some research.

Comparing the Ecclesiastes verse from the Providence window to the verse in my Standard Bible, I was surprised to find the two versions were completely different. In my bible I read: “2:6 I made myself pools from which to water the forest of growing trees.” It was followed by “2:7 I bought male and female slaves, and had slaves who were born in my house.”

The Rhode Island General Assembly purchased the sloop “Katy” in 1775 from John Brown, a wealthy merchant, slave trader and statesman, who lived in Providence. The “Katy” was commissioned to serve the Continental Army against the British and renamed USS “Providence.” It was one of first ships to form the U.S. Navy.

It struck me as a twist of irony, that the U.S.S. Providence served as a merchant vessel of a slave trader, only to be rededicated to the fight for freedom from the enslaving rule of England. The alternate verse drew my attention to this fact. I searched online and found a third version of the same verse, originally written about 200 years before Christ. “Believe God, and he will recover thee: and direct thy way, and trust in him. Keep his fear, and grow old therein.”

Keep his fear? Grow old therein? Puzzled by the turn of phrase, I thought about the words beneath the triptych window, “Dwell therein.” THEREIN. The words tumbled around inside my mind and my heart, settling into a different order. HIS FEAR… THE EARTH… THE WORLD… HIS SPHERE? And storied windows richly dight.

KEEP HIS SPHERE, AND GROW OLD THEREIN.

Take good care of this planet, and live a long life. Had I discovered a pun that had been intentionally laid there by angels overtime for someone to find… or had I created the pun of my own mind?

A pun is a literary device where a word is or similar sounding words are used in a manner to suggest two or more possible meanings. This is generally done to the effect of creating humor or irony, and make the reader have an “ah-ha!” moment.

Inspired by a cryptic triptych, I had stumbled upon the wide discrepancies in biblical verse and connected the bits of information, like the pieces of a puzzle. Deeply intrigued, I sought more information from an ecclesiastical expert. Read more

Storied Windows


Wednesday, October 5, 2011 – The angel reply came back promptly, proposing a playful challenge.

The word dim sparked my curiosity, although I have no idea exactly why it was that word. I consulted Webster’s Dictionary, which listed the synonyms for dim as obscure, dark and mysterious, among others. Inserted among the longer definitions of dim, not luminous or bright, was a quote by John Milton ((1608-1674).

Milton was an English poet who lived during a time of religious strife. Bartlett’s book of Familiar Quotations devotes almost thirteen pages to quotes by Milton. I guessed that “storied windows” referred to the stained glass windows of churches, and in finding the section of verse in Bartlett’s, my guess was confirmed.

I had to flip through the pages of the dictionary to find the meaning of dightto arrange or put in order. I asked myself, “What is the pentameter of this piece of verse?”

Pentameter is a literary device that can be defined as a line in verse or poetry that has five strong metrical feet or beats per line. A metrical foot is a grouping of one stressed syllable with one to two unstressed syllables that repeats in a regular pattern.

Playing with pencil and paper, I altered the Milton quote into pentameter form with five double-syllable beats in each line:

Then I typed it into an email response:

While dispatching my response, the spiritual detective within me suddenly understood the intention of the words “when the ship sails in.” Without waiting to receive a follow-up reply, I left the house and drove a mile into downtown East Greenwich to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, on the hill. St. Luke’s has a magnificent organ and a sanctuary surrounded by a marvelous collection of stained-glass windows. From the top of the church steeple, one can watch boats sail in and out of East Greenwich harbor, and there, at the back of the sanctuary is a stained glass window depicting the ship Providence (shown at the top of this page)… Read more

Explore, Experience, Explain (4): Structural Energetic Therapy

Structural Energetic Therapy® (SET) is a full body therapy that treats musculoskeletal problems with a combination of techniques: kinesiology (muscle testing), postural analysis, Cranial/Structural bodywork, directed myofascial unwinding, emotional energy release, trigger point therapy, scar tissue and adhesion release and other therapeutic bodywork techniques. The medical establishment recognizes that structural imbalances are responsible for over 90 percent of the pain held within the body. Pain arises from distortions in the body structure. Structural imbalances can be as minor as muscle strain and as major as herniated discs.

SET begins by treating the core distortion. Identified and named by Don McCann, MA, LMT, LMHC, CSETT, the core distortion is present from fetal development. The distortion causes a rotation in the pelvis, a structural weight bearing weakness at the base of the spine, exaggerated spinal curvatures and compensating strain patterns in the body. Accidents, illness, stress, emotional challenges, injuries, and other life activities cause the body to collapse further into this distortion, causing pain, limitation and dysfunction. SET protocols are designed to release the primary core (spiral) distortion and and unwind soft tissue holding distortion sub-patterns and structure.

The SET therapist begins by evaluating the patient through a postural examination and then uses applied and functional kinesiology to verify the distortion, conducting muscle testing from the cranium down to the feet, to identify imbalances and weaknesses. Over 39 years of developing SET, McCann evaluated the structural alignment of many clients from a standing posture, viewing their bodies from the anterior, posterior, left and right sides. He observed a consistent anterior rotation of the left ilium and posterior rotation of the right ilium, a consistent pattern from the head down the spine to the feet that showed a spiraling twist going around and through the body. He verified these core distortions using functional and applied kinesiology.

Cranial/Structural Core Distortion Releases (CSCDR) incorporate a cranial motion, which releases structural imbalances throughout the body all the way to the feet, and begins the process of unwinding. Additional SET techniques complement CSCDR process. The ultimate goal of SET is to restore balance, strength and pain-free function in the body.

After undergoing three sessions of SET to treat my frozen shoulder, I found it helped improve my range of motion and lesson the residual pain. The therapist suggested adding regular core strengthening exercises, like Pilates, to my workout routine. Complete healing requires time, and ongoing physical well-being requires self-discipline with regards to physical activity and balanced nutrition.

In Part 5, we will explore pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapies, which incorporate biofeedback..

Learn more about bioregulatory medicine. The BioMed Center is hosting an open house on Wednesday, March 20, 4:30-6pm at 111 Chestnut Street in Providence.