Paul R Smith makes some interesting points about divinization. What does it mean? How does it impact our actions? What does it motivate us to share? 
” One of the earliest Christian beliefs was called deification, divinization, or theosis. It meant participating in God’s divinity by coming into the union with God that Jesus demonstrated. This results in our being one with God. It means knowing God like Jesus knew God. He knew that God was not only beyond him, and close to him, but that in some way God was him. He claimed to be acting and speaking on behalf of God. Like Jesus, we are also one with God. We are God’s mind, heart, hands, and feet here on earth today. Like Jesus, we are fully human and fully divine. We are God’s children, acting as full participants in our Father-Mother’s divinity by overcoming our mistaken identity that we are separate from God. This Oneness consciousness moves us to act as divine agents in healing the Earth, overcoming poverty, eliminating hunger, stopping oppression, and ending war. It motivates us to share the Good News that we all belong to God and one another.”
Just because we participate in God’s divinity does not mean we are God. We will never be God. We can however know God like Jesus knew God. I believe that my silent prayer practice, centering prayer, is my time to sit with Jesus. I enter silent union with God. I let go of me and open my whole being, my mind, heart and body to God who is beyond my thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations. I empty myself so that God has the best opportunity to pray in me. I am both fully human and fully divine with a little “d”. I call it little “d” because I am not God but I participate in God’s divinity when God prays in me. I think the idea of God being within scares some people. God is not a distant God looking down at us. God loves us and is the breath within our very breath.
I arise from my silent sit ready to act on God’s Inner nudges. These Inner nudges are uniquely designed just for me. They are the actions God wishes me to take in the world just for that very day. Here are some examples that I have noticed from my silent sits: wisdom for daily tasks at work or at home, friends or relatives that I should reconnect with for breakfast, lunch or dinner, a spontaneous outing with my wife and children after work or on the weekend, a nudge to volunteer at the local soup kitchen or discover who my employer assists in the community so I can join this effort, a sit with my wife to talk or enjoy a good movie while we drink a cup of our favorite French press coffee.
Silent prayer unites me with God. Silent prayer spurs Inner actions that I make visible in my outer world. Silent prayer teaches me that God is always present: ahead of me waiting to meet me, walking beside me and resting within me. These presences of God stay with me as I arise from my silent sit and move through my daily tasks and duties. At any moment during the day, when I feel discouraged, tired, burned out, or frustrated, a silent pause will reconnect me with the beyond me, beside me and inner presences of God.
I agree with Smith. It is Good News! We belong to God. We belong to and with others. We are all one connected community: family, friends, neighbors, city/town, work environment, country, world. We are not alone. We have each other and God!
Paul R Smith, Integral Christianity: The Spirit’s Call to Evolve
David Frenette, The Path of Centering Prayer: Deepening Your Experience of God
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I am currently taking on clients for Centering Prayer One on One Coaching sessions. I am happy to setup weekly, bi-weekly or monthly sessions with you over the phone or skype to help you go deeper into your centering prayer practice and integrate it into your daily life. Contact me for more information. The rate is $50 – $75 per hour. The first session is 1/2 off.
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Our friends at Contemplative Light are offering Contemplative Practices. This course examines in-depth traditional practices of the Christian mystics, including: The Examen, Centering Prayer, Lectio Divina, The Jesus Prayer and Christian Meditation.
Contemplative Perspectives: Frameworks for the Divine: With the historic practice of The Jesus Prayer as a jumping off point, we explore the experiential aspects of the Purgation/Illumination/Union path of Christian Mysticism.
I am currently reading The Day the Revolution Began: Reconsidering the Meaning of Jesus’s Crucifixion by N. T. Wright. I plan on reading Grateful: The Transformative Power of Giving Thanks by Diana Butler Bass.
Christian Prayer Methods: Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.
The Way of the Wisdom Jesus: Going Beyond the Mind to the Heart of His Teaching – If you put aside what you think you know about Jesus and approach the Gospels as though for the first time, something remarkable happens: Jesus emerges as a teacher of the transformation of consciousness. In this online course, Episcopal priest, teacher, and retreat and conference leader Cynthia Bourgeault serves as a masterful guide to Jesus’s vision and to the traditional contemplative practices you can use to experience the heart of his teaching for yourself. It is based upon her book, The Wisdom Jesus: Transforming Heart and Mind – a New Perspective on Christ and His Message .
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. It is based on his book Simply Jesus. Enjoy an article I wrote about one of the lectures on the Beatitudes.
This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world.
Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks – This is a great way to listen to books with your cell phone while you drive, walk or relax at home. I frequently listen in my car during my commute to and from work. I’m a proud affiliate.
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.
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.
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.)