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As we begin to think about why power is so abused among us, a starting point is our very view of reality. We tend to think of ourselves as separate from one another, separate beings, separate entities, organized into separate categories.
We feel this in our guts, so it must be true, right?
Maybe not. Maybe our sense of separateness is a function of a story we tell ourselves, more than it is an objective reality. In this lesson we’ll think about the teachings of Jesus and Paul, as well as the scientific framework of Einstein.
Maybe we’re not a two-ness. Maybe we are a one-ness. And if so, that will change the power dynamics between us considerably. Continue reading
We conclude this lesson on prayer today. We’ve been looking at prayer from a different starting point. Instead of beseeching God to do things for us (even good, noble, selfless things), our starting point has been Jesus’ teaching about Truth setting us free.
From that starting point, our prayer practices look different, and the results in our lives are different. Today we conclude by considering the benefits that accrue to us as we take on this different kind of prayer practice. Continue reading
“The discipline of casualness…”
That sounds contradictory doesn’t it?
But it’s the very foundation of this different kind of prayer we’ve been talking about. Continue reading
Today, as we continue our lesson rethinking prayer, we come to the mindset necessary for this “seeking-Truth” way of praying.
Self-discipline is necessary to this new way, but that term falls on hard times for many Christians. We’ve tried and tried to be disciplined with our prayer practices, but they returned so little to our souls.
This lesson talks about applying discipline in such a way that it returns an elevated understanding of Truth, awakens us to the Divine Presence that is always in and around us, and answers to the yearning to see the Divine in our daily lives.
Abhishiktananda, a French Benedictine monk who lived in India, said it this way…
Truly there is nothing in the created universe, in all time and space, which does not manifest God and reveal his glory to mankind. In creating us God made us us able to recognize his manifestation in the world and in events, so that we might respond to it in love. Continue reading
Yes, we’re in the middle of a lesson on rethinking prayer, but the 4th of July calls for some appropriate remarks. We’re staying on the theme that will expand our understanding of prayer, but doing it in a 4th-of-July kind of way.
God bless you. Continue reading
We think of prayer as asking God to do something.
That’s not the kind of prayer we’re going to be discussing. We’re talking about prayer in light of Jesus’ teaching that “we will know the Truth, and the Truth will set us free.”
It creates a very different perspective. Continue reading
I thought about titling this message “Don’t Waste Your Time Praying” (since I just did a lesson titled “Don’t Waste Your Time Going To Church”), but that’s not exactly what this lesson is about.
When our images of God change as we progress on the spiritual journey, our ways of praying have to morph as well. I’ve noted that for many Christians, as this metamorphosis happens in their souls, they simply stop praying. I’m hoping that this lesson will restore to us, lives of prayer that are relevant, useful, and helpful. Continue reading
Jesus gave two central commands on which to build the spiritual life. Love the Divine, pursue the Divine, prioritize the Divine with all your heart, and second, love people with the same passion you love yourself. In this lesson, we think together about what this means, and how we can do it. Since Jesus made it so central to the spiritual life, there’s a lot riding on us getting it right. Have a listen. Continue reading
Listen to this prayer from Francis of Assisi. It sums up today’s lesson. Have a listen.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
…where there is injury, pardon;
…where there is doubt, faith;
…where there is despair, hope;
…where there is darkness, light;
…where there is sadness, joy;
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
…to be consoled as to console;
…to be understood as to understand;
…to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
…it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
…and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Continue reading