Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 12, 2014
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 12, 2014
The 2014 Liturgical Calendar and Lectionary is available for immediate shipment. Order yours today at http://www.chirhopress.com/products/product_details/BookRevLiturgicalCal_13_14.html
Please check out two new things on our Web site: Our new line of note cards, http://www.chirhopress.com/products/Fontaine_cards_pick_list.html and our newest book, "A
More Excellent Way," by EXCEL Retreat Ministries, at http://www.chirhopress.com/products/product_details/BookRevAMoreExcellent%20Way.htm .
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our book of daily devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's meditation. We hope you will be blessed. Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
" I bow down towards your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness; for you have exalted your name and your word above everything. On the day I called, you answered me, you increased my strength of soul."
What is spiritual power? How do we get it? Where do we look for it? One answer is that we can experience spiritual power through our breathing. How and what we breathe is significant for our inner well being.
A centering breath prayer and meditation on an intimate, tender name for God provides enormous power. Gandhi used different sacred names for God, as he understood the divine through his Hindu tradition. Gandhi highly recommended breath prayers and meditation spiritual practice to his followers, although he did not require it of them.
Anthony De Mello writes about this practice in his book "Sadhana: A Way to God." Many devout Hindus take the trouble to learn this practice. There are a thousand names for God in Sanskrit and each name has a full meaning that reveals some aspect of the divinity. Many Hindus recite these names lovingly in time of prayer. De Mello suggests we take the time and trouble to invent a thousand names for our own spiritual practice. Imagine a loving and caring presence or higher power. Or if that is offensive to you, imagine a thousand loving names for your inner spirit that gives you life. Use your creativity from a heart "full of love" (De Mello, Anthony. "Sadhana, A Way to God: Christian Exercises in Eastern Form," p. 118).
If we are nervous and anxious, angry and fearful, we may be breathing rapid, shallow breaths. If we would only slow our breathing a little with awareness and a centering word or phrase, we would become more empowered. Attending to our breath increases the strength of our souls. We can find inner strength with nonreligious words such as "love," "peace," "yes," "thanks," and many others. If we have a preferred and trusted religious or spiritual tradition that offers sacred names for Divine Presence, those can also be empowering and calming to our interior center and bring us a sense of healing, wholeness, and inner peace.
If this practice was empowering for Gandhi, it is worth trying. These breath meditations can be done anywhere. We can center ourselves and become more empowered while in our cars, on the bus, as we wait in a doctor's clinic, ride the elevator, and commute to work. We can center with a word while doing household chores and even while having dental work done.
We need some intentional spiritual formation to help us become contemplative activists. Sacred names and words are power sources worth reclaiming. The ancient Psalms have helped people be empowered in their cries to God as they suffered in life and for their beliefs. They can help us today.
Oh God, give me a word and a trusted sacred name to increase the strength of my soul. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
Please visit the Chi Rho Press Web site. You can order using our convenient secure shopping cart and pay on line using your credit card! http://www.ChiRhoPress.com
"Living as the Beloved" is available for $20.95 each, plus shipping and handling. Six or more copies are $15.75 each, plus shipping and handling. You can find http://tinyurl.com/Living-as-Beloved.
United States customers, please remember when ordering on the Web site secure server to select "US Postal Service Parcel Post" rather than the default setting of "UPS Ground." It is much less expensive!
To unsubscribe, ChiRhoPressemail@example.com