Christians are accustomed to the story of Psalm Sunday – of Jesus’ joyous entry into Jerusalem – that many forget what a profoundly dangerous and subversive act his arrival in Jerusalem actually was.
-Robert J. Hutchinson, The Dawn of Christianity
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I read this sentence in Robert Hutchinson’s book, The Dawn of Christianity. Yes, this was indeed a dangerous and subversive act. Jesus was a threat to the Jewish council leaders and Romans. They needed to ensure their control and power over the masses to maintain their interests.
Jesus knew that his journey into Jerusalem was risky. It could get him killed. Jesus decided to bring the kingdom of God to the heart and center of Judaism. The heart and center did not want to hear it. It threatened their control, interests and power.
What does this dangerous and subversive act tell us about Jesus? Jesus was a man on a Spirit filled mission. Jesus must have been extremely brave, calm, compassionate, confident and wise.
When we sit in silence during Centering prayer or other silent prayer practices, we sit with Jesus. Jesus will fill us with this same bravery, compassion, confidence, inner peace and wisdom to guide us in our future actions.
Centering prayer teaches us that we are never alone. Centering prayer teaches us how to live. Centering prayer teaches us when to act and when to just sit like we do during our silent sits. Sometimes action is not always the best action.
We arise from our silent sits new and powerful creations. We are never alone. We sit with Jesus during our silent sits. We arise and walk with Jesus during the non-silent parts of our day. Jesus is our constant companion and partner.
I encourage you to take the time to sit in silence with Jesus so you can walk in life with him too.
Jesus is our constant companion and partner.
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I just finished Presence and Process: A Path Toward Transformative Faith and Inclusive Community by Daniel P. Coleman and The Soul of a Pilgrim: Eight Practices for the Journey Within by Christine Valters Paintner. I am currently reading Intimacy with God: An Introduction To Centering Prayer by Thomas Keating.
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David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings. Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners.
I use a Prayer Rope after each Centering Prayer Sit.
Centering Prayer is a silent prayer practice that can move you toward a profound relationship with the Spirit of God within. It is a way of praying that opens the door to the Divine Indwelling—the ground of our being. With Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating and his colleagues Gail Fitzpatrick-Hopler and Father Carl Arico present the first online course in this method for deepening your intimacy with God and ultimately consenting to the presence and action of the Divine in all aspects of your life.
The early Christians, teaches the Reverend Cynthia Bourgeault, were afire with the spirit of Jesus, inspired fully by his teaching of a total transformation of consciousness. How do we reclaim that fire today? On Encountering the Wisdom Jesus, this brilliant author and dynamic Episcopalian priest presents her first full-length audio course about rediscovering the Master of Wisdom. Twelve immersive sessions cover: the parables as wisdom tools; Jesus’s teachings about kenosis (or self-emptying: a path as radical today as it was 2,000 years ago); Jesus as tantric master; Centering Prayer, an approach to meditation as Jesus lived it, and much more. (Based upon her book, The Wisdom Jesus.)
Since the time of the Desert Fathers in the third century, Finley begins, Christian mystics have practiced meditation as a way of opening to the direct presence of God in daily life. Legendary seekers such as Saint John of the Cross, Saint Teresa of Avila, and Meister Eckhart explored how meditation can lead us beyond the closed horizon of the ego, to an interior and holy refuge that is always available to us. On Christian Meditation, James Finley offers a gentle introduction to this all-transforming way of life, and the ever-deepening realization of oneness with Christ it leads us to. (Based upon his book, Christian Meditation.)
Check out my review of Christian Prayer Methods by Dr. Philip St. Romain.
Prepare to be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus. Check out Simply Jesus by N. T. Wright. Enjoy an article I wrote about one of the lectures on the Beatitudes.
Contemplative Light is a group of Spiritual Directors and writers. They offer a unique style of contemplative coaching based on the teachings and traditions of Christian Mysticism. Sign up for a Spiritual Map Session.