Growing in Love’s Likeness: Weekly Summary

Growing in Love’s Likeness

Summary: Sunday, March 25-Friday, March 30, 2018

The Creator gives us our core identity as sons and daughters of God, “from the beginning” (Ephesians 1:4-5), and throughout our lives we co-create our unique likeness as we grow and mature. (Sunday)

I call the classic pattern of spiritual transformation “order-disorder-reorder.” Paul calls it “the foolishness of the cross.” (Monday)

The transition to the second half of life moves you from either/or thinking to both/and thinking: the ability to increasingly live with paradox and mystery. You no longer think in terms of win/lose, but win/win. (Tuesday)

Each thing and every person must act out its nature fully, at whatever cost. This is our life’s purpose, the deepest meaning of “natural law.” We are here to give back freely what was first given to us! (Wednesday)

At the more mature stages of life, we are able to allow the painful and the formerly excluded parts to gradually belong within a growing, unified field. This shows itself as a foundational compassion. (Thursday)

You only need to lose track of who you are, or who you thought you were supposed to be, so that you end up lying flat on the dirt floor basement of your heart. Do this, Jesus says, and you will live. —Barbara Brown Taylor (Friday)

 

Practice: Dying Daily

As St. Augustine taught, we must “die daily” to our small and separate sense of self. Kathleen Dowling Singh (who passed away in 2017) offered a beautiful invitation to practice dying through meditation. In her words, “We can sit to meditate with the intention to let it all go, inspired to explore what lies beyond self.”

We sit deliberately, with noble posture and noble attention.

We breathe. Progressively, we free our awareness from sensations. We free our awareness from the ‘I’ we imputed upon the sensations and the ‘mine’ with which we tried to claim them. We relieve ourselves of all of our mistaken identifications, loosening our attachments to them, letting them go.

We liberate ourselves from illusions and, cleared of all that congested weight, the burden of being a self, we surrender, entering awareness that is spacious and quiet and uncongested.

We just die into silence. Die to the past. Die to the future. Die to the breath. Completely let go. The silence reveals itself as refuge, as awareness that can be trusted, tenderly loving and resounding with the majesty and the mystery of the sacred. [1]

Reference:
[1] Kathleen Dowling Singh, “Living in the Light of Death,” Oneing, “Ripening,” vol. 1 no. 2 (Center for Action and Contemplation: 2013), 44-46.

For Further Study:
Barbara Brown Taylor, Leaving Church: A Memoir of Faith (HarperOne: 2006)

Richard Rohr, Adult Christianity and How to Get There, disc 1 (Center for Action and Contemplation: 2004), CDMP3 download Richard Rohr, Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life (Jossey-Bass: 2011)

Richard Rohr and Paula D’Arcy, A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life (Franciscan Media: 2012), CD

Richard Rohr, The Two Major Tasks of the Spiritual Life (Center for Action and Contemplation: 2004), CDMP3 download

Inspiration for this week’s banner image: We just die into silence. Die to the past. Die to the future. Die to the breath. Completely let go. The silence reveals itself as refuge, as awareness that can be trusted, tenderly loving and resounding with the majesty and the mystery of the sacred. —Kathleen Dowling Singh

The work of the Center for Action and Contemplation is possible only because of friends and supporters like you!

Learn more about making a donation to the CAC.

FacebookTwitterEmailPrint