LOTUS OF THE HEART
Living in LOVE beyond Beliefs
We Share One Life, We Are One Life
Draw into your beings more and more this wonderful Eternal Life. It is the flow of the Life Eternal through spirit, mind, and body, that cleanses, heals, restores, renews youth, and passes on from you to others, with the same mircale-working power.
*Two Listeners. God Calling. "Eternal Life - Aug 4."
We all need respite. In hospice care, we offer families and patients "respite care." This provides a place, like a Care Center, for patients to remain for a set time, so caregivers can have rest from caregiving. This rest is restorative, and healing to over-worn minds and bodies.
We, likewise, to care for ourselves spiritually, need respite times. Respite spiritually includes a withdrawal from usual activities of exertion, and the ancient teaching of Sabbath is wisely based on this innate need for rest and relaxation. We need this daily, and we need this in more extended times otherwise.
Today, after several strenuous weeks, including the passing on of my dad and coming back to work, to see that I was way behind on work, I enjoyed about three hours in the morning in inspirational readings and quiet Meditation. My body and mind were yearning the quietness, the stillness, and the aloneness with the Alone.
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Respite spiritually does not have to be specifically religious or called spiritual, to be spiritual. I bicycle outside for about 14 to 15 miles several times weekly, finding a trail and enjoying the contours, scents, and sights of the outdoors, as I relish that at age 56 I am blessed to enjoy challenging mind and body, as well as promoting good-health and, hopefully, long life. Yet, if I took this exercise as work, not play, for me it would not be respite, but work. Playfulness is part of sabbathing.
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The opening quote, from the Two Listeners, anonymous writers of the classic God Calling, penned early in the 1930s as intuitive messages from what the two women identified as the Living Christ ... reading this quote this morning early, I was reminded of writing I have done on Quiet Prayerfulness as "marinating" in the Presence, as you understand that One. The first time I heard "marination" as a metaphor for Quiet Prayerfulness, the reference struck me as true to my experience in Silence. Surely, to open the whole being to Grace, in stillness and quietness, is like soaking in the Presence, a renewing and revivifying Quietness. And, in the Christian Bible, words attributed to St. Paul read, "That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day" (2 Cor 4.16, NLT). And, the Psalmist, from the Hebrew Scriptures, "But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother, like a weaned child is my soul within me" (Ps 131.2, ESV).
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This taking Sabbaths, or sabbathing, is a rite of preparation to Love. By soaking in Grace, the Light Itself nourishes and heals. Through this, we are prepared again, and more over time, to be a conduit of Rest to others, a refuge for them to come to enjoy the Grace we ourselves have marinated ourselves in - yes, totally, for such respite touches our whole being and, as such, is an integral means of self-care and devotion. As Dharma instructor and professor Tony Braza writes in The Seeds of Love, comparing respite times spiritually to land lying fallow, "So too we need to prune our lives of too much doing, and lie fallow at times so that we can listen to our bodies, thoughts and feelings. Through silence we listen to what is needed, through space we see the beauty that is in and around us, and by stopping we are truly able to enjoy life and those we love." In this soaking in the bliss and quiet of Interiority, we become more intimate with ourselves and, find as consequence, we are more intimately open and receptive to others and life generally, in a gentle and calmly inviting way of Loving.
©Brian Kenneth Wilcox 2017. Brian is a Hospice Chaplain, living out his vow to serve all living beings by serving those preparing to die and their friends and family. Brian lives a vowed life, alone in a quasi-hermitic life, and integrates varied religions, but most especially the contemplative paths of Buddhism and his native faith, Christianity. Brian received a 'mystical' Christ-experience at age 9, and was introduced to a peace untouched by pain and suffering. Later, in his mid-30s, after surviving a dark night of despair, Brian was vowed to a contemplative Christian way of life on St. Matthew's Feast day, 1995, by Greenbough House of Prayer, in Georgia, USA. This began many years of ardent reading, spiritual practice, and exploration of many spiritual paths, including publication of his book An Ache for Union: Poems on Oneness with God through Love. The Journey has led Brian to the joy beyond the ache, a contentment in experiential union with Grace. Brian lives with the affirmation that Love, not as emotion but Divine Presence, transcends all paths of religion and is our Source and Destination. As St. Paul writes in the Christian Bible, "Now remain always, faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love." Peace to All!
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