A contemplative path through the crisis - Fr Laurence Freeman
What is Christian Meditation ( a note from Fr Laurence Freeman)
Many things, good or bad, nourishing or destructive, true or false can bring us closer together. The global health emergency is doing it by reminding us, as the environmental emergency should, of the reality that we are a single family; we share a beautiful home; our differences are really interesting not threatening; and we need to learn how to share better and to live in a more joyful way. This crisis can bring us together for the sake of goodness, for new depth of wisdom and kindness. It is not all about fear.
The current health crisis is shaking modern lifestyle to its foundations, dramatically and rapidly. But we can all be part of a shared contemplative response that makes a difference to those around us even if we are physically separated. Social distancing can bring us closer together spiritually. We only need to go deeper. To go deeper we need only to be still. Meditation does both.
A Contemplative Path Through The Crisis to build up our inner strength and separate fear from reality.
See the UK website under 'how to meditate’ https://www.christianmeditation.org.uk/ or go to www.onlinemeditationwccm.org
- you might like to start an online course or use the resources on the School of Meditation website www.theschoolofmeditation.org
- keep an eye on the international websites as there may well be new initiatives announced www.wccm.org and www.bonnevauxwccm.org
- if you like social media there are facebook and twitter pages to check out too.
You could try this:
Meditation is simple. You learn to meditate by meditating. It does not demand that you master any difficult theory or special techniques. Christian Meditation is an ancient form of prayer that anyone can learn.
Meditation is simple, being simple means being ourselves. It means passing beyond self consciousness, self analysis and self rejection. Meditation is a universal spiritual practice which guides us into this state of prayer, into the prayer of Christ. It brings us to silence, stillness and simplicity by a means that is itself silent, still and simple.
Sit down. Choose a quiet time and place and try to ensure you will not be disturbed. Sit comfortably and alert, with your back straight. Close your eyes lightly. Then silently, interiorly, simply begin to say a single word, your mantra. An ideal Christian prayer word or mantra is "maranatha". It is an Aramaic word which means “Come Lord” or “The Lord comes”. It is one of the oldest prayers in the Christian tradition. Say it as four syllables (ma-ra-na-tha). Listen to the word as you say it without haste or desire.
Repeat the mantra continuously, gently and faithfully from the beginning to the end of the meditation period. A meditation timer is available here
Let go of all thoughts and imagination, including religious thoughts. Meditation is not about thinking but being. Distractions will come, but do not be discouraged. Simply, humbly return to your word.
At the end of your meditation, you may be tempted to evaluate how well it went - don't! Even after years of practice, established meditators will tell you that they too still suffer distractions. This is perfectly normal.
Try not to judge how good you are at meditation.
Try not to search for an experience of some kind.
Do not look for results.
Just try to be faithful to the practice. 1st thing in the morning and any time you may feel the need for respite.
Any benefits are likely to emerge gradually over a period of time