Go down to the Potter’s House is the story of the first ‘Potter’ retreat/workshops developed by Donagh O’Shea some 30 years ago. The old buildings of The Mews, lovingly restored, at St Dominic’s Retreat Centre in Cork proved a perfect place for the birth of these workshops, but they have continued over the years, and at present they take place in the Dominican Retreat Centre in Tallaght Village, Dublin.
O’Shea writes: ‘If a Christian of today finds an air of unreality about religious language, it may not be due to a lack of faith but to the difficulty of taking in “lofty”, untranslated concepts which have no body in experience. Great energy is released when a truth is experienced in a full-bodied way; and the Christian faith is nothing if not full-bodied: Jesus is God’s body language; he is the Word made flesh. But in our practice we tend to reverse this, turning everything into words. One would think that the central revelation was, “the flesh was made word.”’
These workshops combine meditation and simple meditative work with clay. The aim is to help overcome the effects of centuries of introspection and individualism, and to discover in ourselves and in the Gospel a straightforward simplicity. ‘Clay is mirror-like: it registers every touch of the fingers. The changing shape of clay mirrors everything that is in the mind: haste, confusion, boredom…. Working silently with others we learn to outgrow these false attitudes and discover a true energy that flows from deep within us.’
Go down to the Potter’s House is a revised edition of a work first published in 1988.
Donagh O’Shea, O.P., director of the Dominican Retreat Centre, Tallaght Village, Dublin 24, is author of Take Nothing for the Journey: Meditations on Time and Place (1990), In a Fitful Light: Conversations on Christian Living (1994), I Remember your Name in the Night: Thinking about Death (1997), The Way of the Cross (2003), and Faith Questions: Searching for Meaning and Hope (2013). His website is: www.goodnews.ie
108 pages Paperback €10.99
ISBN 978 1 905604 25 8