Friday, September 2, 2016

SOMEONE IS CALLING MY NAME





MY NAME

Robert Trabold


“just now goldsandaled Dawn”

Sappho



Has someone called me? I believe so.
My breathing gives me a clue.
I feel at my center, a presence there
silent – dark – unknowable
its mystery touches me.
I am immersed in darkness, light
they mingle, weave the quilt of my life’s journey.

I listen to the mystery, feel that
someone has called my name.
In the many currents, undertows of my life
I was remembered.
I was not forgotten, someone called me
walked with me.

I feel, remember how I stumbled in my years
hard streets with dangerous curves.
I was forced to walk - drive in the night.
But I hear my name, voice calls me
from afar, not from this world
but from my center coming from the mysterious presence
giving my name a deep sound, different
from the ordinary.
It now has an echo of depth
meaning, cutting through all the confusion of life.

Someone calls my name – call of love
special because it is from the Divine, Absolute.
I have a Beloved who is totally different.
When He acts, He breaks all barriers
I enter into a new world.
Darkness, mystery of my life still lay on me
but I know, I have a Beloved who calls - remembers me.

                                                              -----------------------------


SOMEONE IS CALLING MY NAME


ROBERT TRABOLD


            We are human beings and have names.  We have our individual names which distinguish us from other human beings and people call our names to catch our attention and talk with us. The calling us by our names can also have emotional content. Speaking our names can be a term of endearment when spoken by two people in love with one another. Our name can be an instrument of anger when others are upset with us and call us in rough terms to express this. Our names can also be an instrument which can be used to find out information about ourselves. Our names are present in many public records.

            Using our name can also be an instrument to help us discover something about ourselves or others. In the gospel story of Mary Magdalene going to the cemetery on the first Easter morning, she was filled with grief and remorse that Jesus died and quite shocked to see the tomb empty. She saw a figure and thought that it was the gardener. With all her grief, she did not recognize Jesus in front of her. Her emotions blocked her from seeing the truth.  It is only when Jesus called her name, ‘Mary,’ that she recognized Him who was the teacher and whom Mary loved very much. It was by the use of her name that Jesus pierced her deep emotions and grief and allowed Mary to see who was speaking to her. She found the person she was looking for.

            In one sense, this story of Mary Magdalene and Jesus is an example of what happens to us if we are faithful in our meditation each day. In contemplative prayer, we sit in silence in the presence of the Lord who reveals Himself to us and draws us closer to Him. It is a long journey and one of silence and darkness because in contemplative prayer, the Lord reveals Himself in our silent prayer in which we encounter a presence. This presence is deep and mysterious in our interior, at our center and still point.
With time, it is also a meeting of love.  In our silent prayer, we encounter someone who loves us and wants us to love in return. It is like the story of Mary Magdalene and Jesus on the first Easter morning where after the calling her by her name, she recognized the person she loved. Our prayer life is a long trip in which if we are faithful, we will meet and see the lover we are looking for. It is a deep trip in which we meet the person around whom we can orientate our life and find meaning to our many years on earth. It gives us hope for our final end where we will meet the Lord in eternal life after our death.

            We can say that in our daily meditation, Jesus is calling us by our name. Calling us by our name, He breaks through all the confusion and ups and downs of human living. With time, we see and meet the person who loves us and gives us a sense of who we are. We are sons and daughters of our Father in heaven and this is the basis of our life. Certainly, our journey in prayer throughout the years is a long one and has many periods of darkness and dryness. But in all of this, we are to remember that someone is calling our name. It is the Lord who with his voice, pierces all the confusion in life and lets us see who we really are.  When we get tired and feel that our prayer life is leading us no place, it is good to remember the story of Jesus and Mary Magdalene on Easter morning. In our meditation, Jesus calls us by our name in which we recognize Him, ourselves and where we should go in our journey on earth.


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Question:  Have you recognized the multi-meaning levels of your name and that of others? In your prayer life, do you feel God’s love for you which is felt by the calling of your name?

I am interested in hearing the opinions of people reading this blog.  Put your comment in the place below and also your e-mail address. It will be of assistance to me and perhaps I could send to you other notices of spiritual interest.

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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

LEAVE SELF BEHIND




LET THE WAVES WASH OVER ME


ROBERT TRABOLD           


In the distance, I hear noise
waves crashing onto the surf
washing over sand.
They are constant - unending
sand is washed - washed.
So white - clean!
I pray!

I want waves to wash over me.
I too need washing - healing
past memories of the hard times in my life
suffering – abandonment – treason.

I sit at shore - let waves
wash over me.
Let them wash away - heal memories
images – faces – voices.

As the water recedes, sand is at peace clean.
I need same peace – rebirth – cleanliness!
Sea is grace of God
divine water will wash me – wipe away
heal biting memories.

Hurt will lessen – peace
will come to me
washed sand is always new
my hope also.


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LEAVE SELF BEHIND


Robert Trabold


            We humans are complicated beings. There are many levels to our life and consciousness and it is good for us to take stock of this and understand these various levels. We have the wounded side to our being where have memories of the hurts which have been inflicted upon us. We are plagued with worries and fears of our life on earth. There can be questions of our survival in a world of many difficulties and tragedies. Of course, we are worried about our coming death and what will happen to us after our departure from the earth.  Jesus tells us that we have to leave these fears and anxieties behind and have confidence in God our Father who takes care of all his creatures on earth despite the many mysteries of our voyage on earth. Jesus calls our attention to the birds of the air for whom God cares and will do the same for us who have a greater value.

            In our human life, we are also conditioned by the pressures of the world and its culture. In the modern world we live in, we are pressured to do many things and produce more. We are to become well known and famous as part of this process. There is never a moment of rest but constant striving to do more. This is part of our industrial world and its ethic and we cannot escape it. It is all around us. The industrial world and its ethic is a tide which pulls us along.

            For the above reasons, our voyage into prayer and into the silence of contemplative and mystical prayer is a counter culture in opposition to what is presented to us each day. We are called to sit in silence and simply repeat our mantra which in one sense is out of step with life around us. When we do this, we become aware of another part of ourselves which is not made to be enslaved by the pulls of the world. This deeper part of ourselves is open to another reality who does not change and who loves us and wants us to reciprocate this love. We become aware of the presence of the Lord who came on earth to show us another way of living.

            When we grow in the awareness of this presence within us, we get the strength to unlock ourselves from the anxieties and fears which we have about our life and future, and to liberate us from the pressures of the modern world which wants us to produce more. We obtain a vision to step back and put our life on another path and to live in the freedom and liberation which Jesus wants us to have. We become strong to love one another and try to make the world a different place to live in which is no mean task. We live in the riches of God’s life which Jesus calls “the fullness of life” and to which He calls us to participate.

            When we pray saying our mantra and sitting in the quiet, we may have the feeling that nothing is happening.  It is so different from what passes in our modern life with its constant activity. It is not true that nothing is happening but we are growing into a way of living which is God’s way and to which we are called to follow. We have to realize this so that we do not give up and let drop our daily prayer life.  It is a pearl of great price which we have to continually cultivate and so reap the fruits of a God filled life about which Jesus talks.


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QUESTION:  Over the years and with your perseverance in prayer, have you noticed a change in yourself and your attitudes where you are becoming more selfless and less influenced by the world’s views?

I am interested in hearing the opinions of the readers of my articles. Leave also you name and e-mail and I will try to keep you abreast of interesting spiritual trends.


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Saturday, July 2, 2016

PILGRIMAGE INTO MYSTERY AND SILENCE




MARIE-ROSE FERRON

Robert Trabold


Quiet warm breeze
blows over the grave site.
Sun is strong
feel noon heat coming.

Quiet in the cemetery
no one around.
Noise of a few passing
cars on their way to someplace.

Made a long trip
pilgrimage to come here.
Wanted to meet a holy
person, feel the presence at the grave.

Marie-Rose suffered
her wounds reflected
violence and harshness
of life, the world.

I feel the same
that is the reason
I came here asking
Marie-Rose’s help.

I feel the violence of
the world, wars
hatred. I long for
peace,  justice.

We have no answers
to the problems.
Marie-Rose did not
have answers either.

She put her confidence
in Jesus. Gave to Him
her world, its people.
That is the example for me.

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PILGRIMAGE INTO SILENCE AND MYSTERY

Robert Trabold


            Recently, I had the opportunity to make a contemplative pilgrimage to Massachusetts where several stigmatics lived and died. Stigmatics are people who during their lifetime had the wounds of Jesus on their body. So far there have been five American stigmatics and two of them lived in Massachuetts and Rhode Island and one Venezuelan stigmatic, Marie Esperanza, worked there and founded a spiritual and retreat center. This was the third time that I have made this pilgrimage and I always have found it a very profound experience to visit their grave sites and the houses where they lived and suffered. One of the stigmatics was Marie Rose Ferron, 1902 – 1936, who was of an immigrant family from Qu├ębec and lived most of her life in Woonsocket, Rhode Island. She was quite famous and many people came to visit her asking for advice for their problems and healings to their illnesses. The second one was Audrey Santo, 1983-2007, who live in Worcester, Mass. She was a very young person when she received the stigmata of Jesus. For Audrey Santo, one can visit a small shrine in the house where she lived, the room where she suffered from the wounds and her gravesite at a local cemetery.

            In visiting these sites, I had a profound sense of their presence. As they helped and counselled people in their life, there were still present and wanted to hear about our needs and those of the world. In the three pilgrimages which I have made over the years, these were contemplative ones where I went by myself.  I wanted to enter into silence and meditation. At the two gravesites, I had a deep experience of their presence and that of Jesus. I told them of my concerns for the contemporary world with its violence and wars and also my personal problems. I did not do much talking because they knew already what my problems were. I rested in the silence of the gravesites and the house and left there the problems which disturb me and our world. This silence and peace which I experienced carried over into the rest of the day and gave a contemplative aura to the whole week. I did not do much talking during the week except for a few passing conversations with people in the hotel.

            While I was there, there was a questioning on my part about the mystery of human beings having the wounds of Jesus on their body.  Certainly, the whole reality of the suffering and wounds of Jesus is a big mystery.  He was a good man and had such a painful ending, so unjust and violent. When we look at our world, we are quite disturbed by the endless violence, hatred and wars which plague us. How and when will it all end? What is the meaning of it all? Jesus and these stigmatics labored under the sufferings of their wounds. Their wounds are like the problems, violence and wars of our world and we have to bear them as the stigmatics carried the wounds of Jesus on their body. Certainly, Jesus must have felt confusion and pain of his quick and sudden death. The stigmatics also felt the similar confusion with the presence of the same wounds of Jesus on their body. Ultimately, in the life of Jesus and the stigmatics, it was faith that got them through. Jesus had his Easter Sunday and the stigmatics had the same faith which got them through all their trials.

            In visiting Massachusetts with the houses and grave sites of the stigmatics, they gave me the message that we have to carry the burdens of our life and those of our violent world.  We do not have the answer to all these things. Someday when we reach eternal life, things will be put into place but for now on earth, we have to live in mystery and much darkness. In this pilgrimage, I believe that I received insight and strength to continue on and not give up on life and the world. I have to keep on living following the path of Jesus and living in the same darkness and questioning that He experienced. We get strength from the words of St. Paul, “For those who have faith, all things will work out for the good.”

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            I am anxious to know of the reaction of the readers to this poem and article. I would appreciate it if you would leave your reaction in the comment box.
           
Question: Have you reflected on the mystical wounds and experience of the stigmatics and what is their meaning for our life and world?
           
Please leave also your name and e-mail address and I can contact you for other important spiritual information.

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Wednesday, June 1, 2016

DEPTHS IN PRAYER




‘FOR YOU ALONE, MY SOUL WAITS IN SILENCE!’

Robert Trabold


Slowly distinctly, I whisper:
“For you alone, my soul waits in silence!”

My voice arises from the depths
words vibrate in my whole body
coming from deepest parts of my center
whose depth is infinite
endless tunnels, stairs, deep darkness
so still noise never penetrates there.

I enter, descend slowly but am hopelessly lost in mystery
mystery of an encounter in my depths.
I meet my Beloved utter stillness.
My Beloved speaks in silence
clue to the divine’s presence.

I repeat: “For you alone, my soul waits in silence!”
feel resonance of the words
words of love,  longing, words of waiting.
I sit in utter silence, I feel nothingness
but emptiness is full
out of darkness out of mystery comes light.
What meeting could be more beautiful!

                                                  
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DEPTHS IN PRAYER


ROBERT TRABOLD


            Reflecting on our Christian life, it is evident that there are many forms of prayer and each has a place in our life.  We have verbal and vocal prayer where for example we say the ‘Our Father.’ There is singing done by individuals or groups like a choir which we do in liturgical events. We have discursive prayer where we reflect on a biblical passage and some truth of our Christian faith in order to understand it more deeply and apply it to our life. We participate in liturgical prayer where we assist at different events in our local church in order to praise God and have contact with the divine. We meditate and participate in contemplative prayer where we pray in silence and which opens for us another dimension to our Christian life. From our Christian faith, we know that we are created in God’s image and we are to reflect this in the way we live.

            It is a challenge however for us to grow in this realization that we are temples of God’s presence and the divine is present at our center and still point. The Holy Spirit lives in our inner most being. To grow in this awareness of the sacred presence within us, it is important for us to grow in contemplative prayer. In this prayer or meditation, we go beyond words, images and discourse. We then meet a presence deep within us who helps us understand our true value in life as sons and daughters of our Father in heaven and gives us the motivation and strength to transform ourselves into this new dignity. This realization of the divine presence within us will also change and transform the way we see ourselves, other people and all creation. We will begin in a deep way to see things as Jesus did and wanted to teach us. We become more deeply and truly images of the divine and manifest this to others.

            To grow in this vocation which Jesus wants us to do in our life and the world, it is important for us to realize that all forms of prayer are valuable but also to understand the very crucial role that contemplative prayer and meditation add to our Christian life. Each way of prayer fills out the picture of where we are in the world and to what God calls us. However, we have to go beyond them and enter into silence where we forget ourselves and touch the silent presence of Jesus at our center and still point. This silent encounter of the Lord is an essential part to our growth. We are not thinking about ourselves but just being with the divine presence within us and so drawn closer to Him. If we are faithful in our contemplative prayer and this journey into silence, the Lord will slowly remake us into His image. We will become the sons and daughters of God which Jesus wants us to be. John Main suggests that we try to meditate twice a day for 20 minutes each and quietly recite our mantra. This requires fidelity to commit ourselves to grow in contemplative prayer and an effort to regulate our daily schedule to allow this.

            It is important for us to realize the different kinds of prayer and their function in our life. Each makes a contribution to our life and Christian growth.  In contemplative prayer, we will grow to realize that there is no one closer to us on earth, even beyond our closest friends, as the Lord is. This will be the source of joy and direction of our life. We touch the divine hand which leads us in a good path and gives us confidence not to give up despite all the disappointments and troubles of living a human life in this troubled world.

                                   
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I would be appreciative if you would take a moment to answer the following question.  I am interested in knowing the reaction of readers to this poem and article.

Question:  In your experience through the years, have you experienced the different kinds of prayers and the various roles they play in your growth in the Christian life? Have you experienced the particular benefit and richness of meditation and contemplation in silence?

            Also, if you leave your name and e-mail address, I could send you special announcements and information that might be helpful to you.


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Monday, May 2, 2016

RUSSIAN MARIAN ICON SHOWS US THE WAY





RUSSIAN ICON:

OUR LADY OF VLADIMIR


ROBERT TRABOLD


Soft touch, gentle head
bows touches baby’s face.
Mother’s eyes deeply mysterious
looking into eternity.

Baby looking up holding on to mom
mother’s head  covered with black shawl
dropping down golden background
light from heaven shot through with divinity!

I am touched, feel quiet beauty
wrapping around me
washing me in mystery
touches of the Divine
the Beloved!

Mother’s eyes reach me
include me in her meditation.
Wants me to stay quiet
not run away.
Mother loves me too, taking me
by the hand leads me to her son.

I feel delirious, ecstasy in my eyes.
Mystery overwhelms me radiance
of Russian icon tells me
“You are loved!”  “Do not worry!”

Mystery of the mother is beyond
me but her eyes watch me
holding me taking me by the hand
until my journey ends.


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MARIAN RUSSIAN ICON – OUR LADY OF VLADIMIR


ROBERT TRABOLD


            The Russian icon, Our Lady of Vladimir, is a famous Russian one because of its beauty and meaning it can have in our spiritual life. The mother and child sit with a wall of gold in the background. The mother looks at the child with tenderness and the child feels this and returns the gaze. The picture takes on meaning because this is the Virgin Mary and Jesus is her son who was sent by the Father on earth to preach the good news. The good news is that our Father in heaven loves us and wants us to reciprocate this love. He sent his Son Jesus to teach and his message should help us learn how we can reciprocate this love and become worthy sons and daughters of Our Father. The icon with its beauty touches us and has us rest in this beauty. In the beauty of the icon, the Virgin Mary is touching us and inviting us to follow her Son. She wants us to contemplate this beautiful picture and listen to the words and advice that she offers us. This is a very famous Russian icon and through the centuries, Christians have looked on the picture and drawn inspiration to advance and grow in their Christian life. Mary was close to Jesus and was his mother and now she teaches us how we can be good disciples of Him.

            In our journey on earth, there are many paths open to us and pull us to live in a variety of ways. However, Mary wants to lead us and have us follow the Christian path. She encourages us to be faithful in our meditation and good works so that we can overcome the confusion of human life and find the path of her Son which cuts through this confusion.  Mary leads us to the real path which opens up for us the knowledge of who we are and our place in the world. We then understand and know the position of other people on earth. This new vision of life grows in depth as we realize that we are to be rooted in God.  Mary encourages us to be constant in our journey to base ourselves in the Divine and so overcome the different ways that the world pulls us to lead our life.

            In this journey to root ourselves in God and the Christian message, our daily prayer and meditation are important tools. For a while each day, we put aside our many activities and responsibilities so that we can focus our attention on the presence of the Lord who is present at our center and still point. We do this whether we feel like praying or not. We discipline ourselves to get control of our daily routine so that we can have time for meditation. We are already putting things into perspective and making room for this important event in our life, our daily meditation. As time goes on, other things will fall into place and we will see how Jesus saw the world and life and this becomes our vision.

            During the month of May which is the month where we honor and think about the Virgin Mary, she offers herself to help us grow in this Christian vision of ourselves and the world. Mary loves us as she loved her son, Jesus. The same tenderness that she shows in the lovely icon, she has for us. This is important for us to realize because in our Christian journey through the years, we have Mary at our side and she encourages us.  We are not alone in this trip. This Russian icon is famous not only for its beauty but because Christians during the centuries have realized this role of the Virgin Mary and prized her help.  This is an example for us. Let us use this beautiful Russian icon to lead us into the mystery of Mary and her Son so that we can become faithful servants of the Lord in the years to come.


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QUESTION:   Does the Russian icon and perhaps other works of art touch you so that they give you the inspiration and strength to grow in your Christian life, prayer and work?  During the years, I have been very influence by icons and other works of art encouraging me to grow in faith and prayer.  Beauty in the material world can impact our spiritual life.

            I would be very interested if the readers of this blog would leave a comment. I would like to know how others feel. If you leave also your name and e-mail address, I will keep you posted on announcements which may be of interest to you.




Saturday, April 2, 2016

DIVINE LOVE IN EASTERTIME





STILLNESS AND QUIET

Robert Trabold


Hardly anything moves – no wind
neither bushes nor trees swaying – surprising
for a winter’s day at the seashore.
Everything is in suspended animation
blinding sunshine gives same impression
even its gentle warmth is motionless.

Vast blue sky does not move
no clouds to break it up
all is still!
Not even vastness of the sky
disturbs silence.

Is this why I came to the sea?
I leave behind my hectic life
house cleaning – garden pruning – e-mails
anti-war demonstrations – neighborhood meetings.
Am I looking for something else?
Is someone pulling me to the seashore?

Stillness - emptiness
start fires burning within me.
I am waiting – catch my breath
my eyes are straining – Absolute overwhelms me.

My Beloved is knocking at my inner most door
a door He can only knock at.
No one else can enter so deeply within me.

Fire burns – my heart beats faster
my breathing speeds up
my whole body trembles.
My Beloved is touching me – wooing me
to love
I lay back my head - rest in
ecstasy.


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DIVINE LOVE IN EASTERTIME



Robert Trabold



            We have just passed the six weeks of Lent where with our prayer and sacrifices, we tried to orientate ourselves to the events of Holy Week and Easter.  In the former, we remembered the great voyage of Jesus to Jerusalem where He had His triumphal entry but also the sad reality of His rejection and death on the cross.  He was a good man who preached the Good News that God our Father loves us and wants a relationship of love with us.  The Father then gave to Jesus His victory of the Resurrection and invited all men and women to participate in it.  These were certainly momentous times in our Christian faith and the past six or seven weeks of Lent and Holy Week gave us time to grow in this faith. In this Eastertime where we celebrate and remember the Resurrection of Jesus, His victory might give us an opportunity to reflect on the enormous love of God for us and how it transforms our life and the life of the world.

            The love of God for us is very different from the one which we experience in the world with other human beings.  In our human relationships, we develop friendships and love and affection can grow between ourselves and others. This can be a long process depending on the relationship. It can be a casual love between friends or a deeper one between a married people.  We work on this love, change ourselves and in one sense, the love between two people has to be earned and then it flowers.  It is a challenge and hard work.

            In our relationship with God, the dynamic is quite different.  If we recall the parable of the Prodigal Son, the father waited and watched each day for his son to return.  When he saw him in the distance, he ran out to greet him and welcomed the lost son back home. In a very real sense, this is a scenario of the love of God for us.  In our human existence, the Lord does not wait for our conversion and then love us.  God the Father loves us in our sinfulness and unworthiness and uses this love to work for our change into better people. So in one sense, we do not have to earn the love of the Father for us but it is available to us.  God the Father loves us so that this generosity can help us be better sons and daughters.  He does not wait for our conversion but in His love for us, encourages us to grow into true sons and daughters of Him. This is too good to be true.  It is not what we experience in human life where we have to earn the love of the other person for us but it is there each day and the Father offers it to us.

            In this Eastertime, we might take time to realize the wonderful gift that the Father gives us each day. It should  rouse us up to realize this gift and use it for our transformation into His faithful children.  There is no more beautiful time to grow in this realization than Eastertime.  Through Lent and Holy Week, we have experienced the great mysteries of our faith and these will help us grow into and appreciate the unearned love of the Father for us.  During Eastertime, He is looking down the road as He did in the parable and welcomes us back.  We are given a beautiful gift and this is the time to grow in an appreciation of it.

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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

WALKING THROUGH LENT TO EASTER




STILLNESS AND QUIET

Robert Trabold


Hardly anything moves – no wind
neither bushes nor trees swaying – surprising
for a winter’s day at the seashore.
Everything is in suspended animation
blinding sunshine gives same impression
even its gentle warmth is motionless.

Vast blue sky does not move
no clouds to break it up
all is still!
Not even vastness of the sky
disturbs silence.

Is this why I came to the sea?
I leave behind my hectic life
house cleaning – garden pruning – e-mails
anti-war demonstrations – neighborhood meetings.
Am I looking for something else?
Is someone pulling me to the seashore?

Stillness - emptiness
start fires burning within me.
I am waiting – catch my breath
my eyes are straining – Absolute overwhelms me.

My Beloved is knocking at my inner most door
a door He can only knock at.
No one else can enter so deeply within me.

Fire burns – my heart beats faster
my breathing speeds up
my whole body trembles.
My Beloved is touching me – wooing me
to love
I lay back my head - rest in
ecstasy.


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JOURNEY THROUGH LENT TO EASTER
 
 
Robert Trabold
 
 
            We entered the month of March and continue our journey through Lent and reach Holy Week and feast of Easter.  This is a rich time in our Christian life because it brings us to important events of our faith.  During Lent, we take time for prayer and fasting or other penances to remind us that we are pilgrims on earth and we constantly have to take stock of our life so that we follow the way of Jesus more and so reach our eternal destiny. In Holy Week, we are reminded of the momentous events in the life of Jesus - His suffering and death and ultimate victory on Easter Sunday. In this journey through Lent to Holy Week, our faithfulness to meditation can help us enter into these Christian mysteries.  In our daily contemplative prayer, we take 20 minutes, twice a day to sit in silence in an attempt to encounter the Divine. We do not try to think about God and solve deep theological questions.  Rather it is an attempt by us to touch God’s presence present at our center and still point. This journey to our center in silence is a capsule of our spiritual journey through Lent. We discover in a deep way to meet the Lord without many words and thoughts but touch someone who loves us and want us to reciprocate this love.
 
            In one sense, our daily contemplation is a journey to the ground of our being, to our origin, to the point from where we come. We leave behind our thoughts, desires and plans and sit in silence.  It is a silence of love where we meet the Beloved who wants to walk with us on earth and lead us to eternal life. In contemplation, we attempt to orientate ourselves completely to God. We want Him/Her to be the center of our human journey and desire to orientate all our values and activities as Jesus wants us to do. We enter into an area of simplicity in our life in which all other things find their place. We are not overwhelmed by the complexity of all the movements of the world but put them in perspective. We see things as Jesus saw them and not have the things of the world dominate us.
 
            To reach this point, we have to focus our attention and do this by reciting faithfully our mantra. The mantra helps us put aside all thoughts, words and images and so that we can touch the Divine around whom we want to orientate our life and respond to the love with which the Lord showers us. We are not torn in many ways with which the world tempts us. Our journey in daily contemplation is a capsule of what our journey through Lent to Easter Sunday should be. During the weeks of Lent with our extra prayer, penances and other good practices, we want to refocus our life. The world has many things and movements which can and do pull us in many directions. The concentrated and simple experience we have of Jesus in contemplation helps us find this good focus of our life. For twenty minutes, twice a day, we attempt to be in God’s presence and put other things aside. This simple experience can be a model of the refocusing of our life during Lent in our journey to Easter Sunday.
 
 
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