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Author Topic: Richard's daily meditations -- Week of 8-28-2011  (Read 3040 times)
Alan
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piggysiggy
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« on: August 28, 2011, 06:02:35 AM »

Aug 28
Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER

   
I think the contemplative mind is the most absolute assault on the
secular or rational worldview, because it really is a different mind—a
different point of view.

The mind that I call the "small self” or the "false self” reads
everything in terms of personal advantage, short-term effort, “What's
in it for me?”—and “How will I look?”, “How will I look good?”
As long as you read reality from the reference point of the small self
of “how I personally feel” or “what I need or want,” you cannot
get very far. The lens never opens up.

Thus the great religions have taught that we need to change the seer
much more than just telling people what to see—that is contemplation.


Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
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... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Lanasshoebox
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2011, 08:09:02 PM »

ok, this went right over my head, and i truly wanted to understand it.
To me, contemplative prayer was prayer with contemplation...
Something that involves deep, and coragouse thought...
To wrestle with thoughts, and come to terms with things...
To contemplate things.

So here i have this deepening feeling that i have misused this terminology...

What IS contemplative prayer exactly?

Please do not mix in oppinions, just the meaning. Strugaling with this, help please.

Lana
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Alan
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2011, 08:19:47 PM »

The way I normally use it, it is silent prayer.  You sit quietly, eyes closed, not thinking about anything in particular.  The idea is to get the normal flow of thoughts out of the way so that the Holy Spirit can take you beyond what you already are, and when that happens (which is a gift from God on his decision and schedule) it is the gift of contemplation.

So we do contemplative prayer forms, and we receive contemplation.  Some seem to receive more than others, but at least we are opening ourselves up to God.

Also called "passive prayer" or "resting in God."

Alan
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... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
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« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2011, 01:11:16 AM »

Aug 29

Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER

   
"Contemplation," or “meditation” in some groups, was rediscovered in
contemporary times beginning with the writings of Thomas Merton in the
1950s and 1960s. The word most Christians are more familiar with is
simply "prayer."

Unfortunately, in the West, prayer had become something functional;
something you did to achieve a desired effect—which too often puts the
ego back in charge. As soon as you make prayer a way to get what you
want, you’re not moving into any kind of new state of consciousness.
It's the same old consciousness, but now well disguised: "How can I get
God to do what I want God to do?" It's the egocentric self deciding what
it needs, but now, instead of just manipulating everybody else, it tries
to manipulate God.

This is one reason religion is so dangerous and often so delusional. If
religion does not transform people at the level of both mind and heart,
it ends up giving self-centered people a very pious and untouchable way
to be on top and in control. Now God becomes their defense system for
their small self! Even Jesus found this to be true of the scribes,
Pharisees, and teachers of the law.


Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
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... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Alan
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piggysiggy
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« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2011, 01:30:09 AM »

Aug 29

...

This is one reason religion is so dangerous and often so delusional. If
religion does not transform people at the level of both mind and heart,
it ends up giving self-centered people a very pious and untouchable way
to be on top and in control. Now God becomes their defense system for
their small self! Even Jesus found this to be true of the scribes,
Pharisees, and teachers of the law.


Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.

Wow.  I really like the way he says this.  I've actually started a thread on Fr. Richard on CAF, that so far is pretty much drawing posts from Rohr's followers.  This whole email is so good that I just posted it into that thread.  I don't see how anybody can even argue with what it says.

Alan
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... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
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« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2011, 01:50:17 AM »

Aug 30


Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER

   
In order to understand contemplation and the contemplative mind, we need
to talk about the “True Self,” who you are in God from all eternity.
This is the only self that has ever existed. It's the only self that
exists right now. The trouble is that most people don't know it or even
know about it! The work of religion is to get you to know your True
Self, “hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3 [1]) as Paul puts it.

You came from God. Your deepest DNA is divine. You're already spiritual
beings, and the daily concern and question is “How do I become
human?” I believe that's why Jesus came as a human being. He didn't
come to teach us how to go to heaven but how to be a human being here on
this earth—which is heaven now.

[1]: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Colossians%203:3&version=NIV;MSG;KJV
   
Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
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... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Alan
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piggysiggy
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« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2011, 01:57:10 AM »

Aug 31
Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER

   
The false self is your psychological creation of yourself in space and
time. It comes from your early conditioning, family, roles, education,
mind, culture, and religion. The false self is who you think you are!
But thinking doesn’t make it so. The false self dies and passes away.
Yet it is the raw material through which you discover your True Self in
God.

The True Self is not created by anything you have done right or wrong.
It is never about requirements; it’s about relationship—the quality
and capacity for relatedness. This lays the foundation for contemplative
prayer. The false self will say prayers but the True Self is a prayer
and looks out at reality from a different pair of eyes larger than its
own. This is why in Ephesians it says "pray always" (6:18 [1]). We pray
always whenever we act in conscious and loving union with God, which
eventually can be all the time—even in our sleep!

[1]: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=ephesians%206:18&version=NIV;MSG;KJV

Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
Logged

... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Alan
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piggysiggy
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« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2011, 04:09:35 AM »

Sept 1

Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER


I think some kind of experience of God is necessary for mental and
emotional health. You basically don't belong in the universe until you
are connected to its center, and one word for that center (and
everything else by implication) is “God.” When you live in the false
self you are “eccentric” or off center. You're trying to make
something—yourself—the Center that is not the center. It will never
work in the long run, because it is not true. A part can never pretend
to be the Whole.

So I would call the false self your “relative identity,” and I would
call the True Self your “absolute identity.” A relative identity is
not bad. The false self is not bad either. It's simply not the True
Self! If you do not have some experience of your True-Self-in-God, by
which to relativize and limit your false self, it has to pose as the
real thing—and tries to get away with it. But it cannot work. It is
not true. An edge can never pretend to be the Center.


Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
Logged

... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Alan
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piggysiggy
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« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2011, 03:59:38 PM »

Sep 2

Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER


Presence is a relational term, and it implies at least two parties who
both give and receive. The “Real Presence” is the Catholic term for
Jesus’ presence in the bread and wine, but if we don't know how to be
present to another presence there is no Real Presence—for us! There
must be an opening from both sides for presence to exercise its
transformative effect. What we're doing in contemplation is learning,
quite simply, how to be present. That is the only way to encounter any
other presence, including Jesus in the Eucharist. The change is all and
always on our side. (There really is not much point in arguing about IF
and HOW, just be present and you will know what you need to know.)

We know that God is always given from Jesus’ side, but we have to
learn how to receive such total givenness. Believe it or not, that is
major work on our part, because we are all filled with blockages to
pure, naked presence. It is too vulnerable a position.


Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
Logged

... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Alan
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piggysiggy
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« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2011, 04:00:31 PM »

Sep 3
Richard's Daily Meditations


CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER


Contemplation is meeting as much reality as we can handle in its most
simple and immediate form, without filters, judgments, and commentaries.
Now you see why it is so rare and, in fact, “the narrow road that few
walk on” (Matthew 7:14 [1]). The only way you can contemplate is by
recognizing and relativizing your own compulsive mental grids—your
practiced ways of judging, critiquing, blocking, and computing
everything.

[1]: http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%207:14&version=NIV;MSG;KJV

This is what we are trying to do by practicing contemplative prayer, and
people addicted to their own mind will find contemplation most
difficult, if not impossible. Much that is called thinking is simply the
ego’s stating of what it prefers and likes—and resistances to what
it does not like. Narcissistic reactions to the moment are not worthy of
being called thinking. Yet that is much of our public and private
discourse.

When your mental judgmental grid and all its commentaries are placed
aside, God finally has a chance to get through to you, because your
pettiness is at last out of the way. Then Truth stands revealed! You
will begin to recognize that we all carry the Divine Indwelling within
us and we all carry it equally. That will change your theology, your
politics, and your entire worldview. In fact, it is the very birth of
the soul.

   
Starter Prayer:
  Clear my mind for Your Truth.
Logged

... love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Lanasshoebox
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« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2011, 08:49:43 PM »

I wish the terminology was easier to handle for this topic. I am certainly reading it, but how to apply the terminology is befudeling me. Too bad, especially when i love the topic. Well i am here in spirit!

Lana
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