The Tying of a Knot

Spoken in ceremony to those gathered to witness the occasion of Andrew and Alison’s wedding – 16 July 2011

“The tying of a knot as a symbol of the commitment engendered by an unbreakable promise is an old and hallowed tradition – and it is indeed auspicious and fitting that Andrew and Alison have chosen this as a symbol of their commitment to each other and the unity that they together constitute.

But to what does this symbol refer? Why a knot?

Which is, afterall, a kind of tangle.  A snarl.  A messiness in one’s way.  And sometimes even an entrapment.

A knot, and the tying of a knot on one’s wedding day, can indeed be a reminder of the occasional snarl and messiness that inevitably attends human love and relationship.

But it is far more than that, too.

The real worth of the symbol, and the kernal of our focus today, is in its strength and its integrity.  It is in the bonds that hold in trust a promise that we endeavor to keep, to protect, to hold in the center.

Because a knot is a kind of promise, a promise of strength, support, and unity of purpose.

And the real worth of the symbol is in the once separate strands that weave carefully and intentionally together, preserving the integrity of each and blending to become … something else … something other … something more than either strand is separately… something indomitable only in its unity.

So we do not tie this knot lightly – its symbolism is rife.  It is an intentional act of purposeful creation – as is the life that Andrew and Alison have created together and will from this day forward continue to co-create.

In the strand that they will use momentarily to tie their own knot, there is a solid tangible core.  Alison and Andrew have chosen a polished sphere of tungsten carbide for its weight and its moment.  The bonds that enclose it and protect it are of leather.

And now, as I ask them to take hold of the separate strands, these two, who have intentionally and purposefully become as one, will tie their own indomitable knot.

[tie the knot]

And so it is, has been, and will be.

Alison and Andrew request the support of the community to make this knot strong.  They ask that you each, sometime before you leave today, make your way to the basket that will be held by Hailey and Natasha, choose a strand from the basket, and tie one knot onto the loop that Andrew and Alison have created in symbolism of the part that you have already played in their coming together – and of your ongoing support of their bond.”

Let joy be unconfined!

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