Monday, April 26, 2010

The Ten Commandments In Modern Conversational English

Ever think about the Ten Commandments in modern conversational English?

Paulist Father John Behnke, former chaplain at St. Lawrence Church and Newman Center, offers a re-write of the biblical language in a new book whose target audience is younger people.

In “Lent and Easter for the Younger Crowd” (Paulist Press), he offers this take on Exodus 20:1-7, better known as the Ten Commandments:

"One day God said to his people, 'Here are some rules I want you to always follow:

1. Pray only to me because I'm the one who made you and saved you.

2. I don't want to hear any of you swearing.

3. I want one day out of the week to be a special day for you. Don't do too much work that day so you can relax and spend some time praying to me.

4. I want you to listen to your parents (even when you grow up) because they have lived longer and know more about life than you.

5. Don't kill anyone for any reason.

6. Don't fool around with someone you're not married to.

7. Don't take anything that isn't yours.

8. Don't lie about anybody.

9. Don't always be wanting things that belong to other people.

All I'm really asking is that you 'love me and keep my rules.'"

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Saturday, April 24, 2010

The 25 Principles of Healing by Jon Mundy, Course In Miracles Workshop

The 25 Principles of Healing of John Mundy, received and revised by Alex Burtson at The Selfless Self

On a podcast from "A Cloud Does Not Put Out the Sun," they were discussing Jon Mundy's 25 principles of healing. Alex Burtson wrote them all down, simplifying and shortening a couple of them. Here they are:

One illness is not harder to heal than another.
The healer’s sole responsibility is to accept atonement for himself.
You heal by seeing past the patient’s ego and sick beliefs, as well as your own.
You heal by realizing that you don’t have to change the patient.
You heal by seeing the patient’s body and its sickness as unreal.
To heal, it is necessary to understand the mind’s purpose in making the body sick.
To heal, it is necessary to understand the fear of healing.
The patient is not a victim of a dangerous world, but is the commander of his situation, the dreamer of his dream.
The proper aim of healing is not the body, but the mind.
The patient is the same as you and one with you.
The patient is your equal.
You are not in a position to direct the process or judge the outcome. The Holy Spirit is the only healer.
You do not give the patient something from outside of her; you merely help her connect with the wholeness already within.
There is something in you that will tell you what each brother needs. You must not demand, decide, nor sacrifice- only listen and you will find the answer.
Do not doubt the power in you.
Healing occurs when, in a holy instant, you step outside your normal frame of reference.
You heal by forgiving the patient. The process that takes place in this relationship is actually one in which the therapist, in his heart, tells the patient that all his sins have been forgiven him.
You heal by aiding the patient’s own forgiveness processes.
Your true perception is what heals, not your behaviors, your words, your hands, or the energy you move around.
Calling on Jesus is part of the healing, but not because this is a magical invocation.
You heal through your happiness. Those who attempt to heal without being wholly joyous themselves call forth different kinds of responses at the same time, and thus deprive others of the joy of responding wholeheartedly.
Healing others is not a sacrifice- it is the road to happiness. There is a tendency to assume that you are being called on constantly called on to make sacrifices for those who come.
The healers reward lies not in demands or ingratitude but in the giving itself, which reinforces the healer’s own healing. An unhealed healer waits for something in return, and so he cannot give nor heal.
If symptoms persist, trust that the patient receives the healing- do not repeat it.
Self-doubt and self-concern represent a reliance on the false self.
All of the principles are simple- they are 25 different ways to say the same thing. This is basically what they say: There is no order of difficulty in healing, and you heal by knowing that you are the same, equal, and one with the patient. The mind is the focus in true healing, and the body is the focus in magic.You must forget the random judging of the ego and the belief in sickness, and instead be fearless and doubtless. You must not expect a result or make any demands (like money) or you will be unable to heal. You must understand that there is wholeness within each one of us, and that you must listen to the Holy Spirit that is within you if you want to perceive correctly. You know that we are not the victims but the commanders of our situations, and that you are able to heal through forgiving your false self and the false selves of others.

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

How to Practice Centering Prayer

Centering Prayer is:

A relationship with God
The discipline is constantly at the service of this relationship
A movement beyond conversation with God to communion with God
Preparation for us to open the gift of contemplation
Not meant to replace other kinds of prayer
A connection to our source the Indwelling God
Focuses on a deepening of our relationship with God
Provides the Fruits of emotional balance, a sense of belonging, and fellowship
Centering Prayer Method - The Prayer of Consent

Centering Prayer is both

a relationship with God, a Power greater than ourselves
a discipline in total service to deepening this relationship
a movement from being self-centered to God-centered. Centering prayer is in the service of this action.

The Guidelines

1. Choose a sacred word as the symbol of your intention to consent to God’s presence and action within

2. Sitting comfortably and with eyes closed, settle briefly and silently, introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God’s presence and action within

3. When engaged with your thoughts, return ever-so-gently to the sacred word

4. At the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes

Guideline 1

“Choose a sacred word as the symbol of your intention to consent to God’s presence and action within.”

Sacred word expresses our intention to consent
It is sacred only because of its intention (no inherent meaning)
Intention and consent are the heart and soul of Centering Prayer
What is God’s presence and action?

God’s presence is the divine life within us which affirms our basic core of goodness
God’s action is the grace of the transformation process
The Sacred Word

The sacred word is a word of one or two syllables

A few examples
God, Father, Mother, Abba
Faith, Yes, Let Go, Let God
Peace, Be Still, Listen, Shalom
Hope, Love, Breath, Home

Guideline 2

“Sitting comfortably and with eyes closed, settle briefly, and silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God’s presence and action within.”

Sitting comfortably … back straight
With eyes closed … as a symbol of “letting go”
Silently say your sacred word… as a symbol
of your intention and consent

Guideline 3

“When engaged with your thoughts, return ever-so-gently to the Sacred Word.”

“Thoughts” is an umbrella term for every perception, including body sensations, feelings, images, memories, plans, reflections, concepts, commentaries, and spiritual experiences
Thoughts are inevitable, integral and normal
“When engaged with your thoughts, return ever-so-gently…” — a minimum effort is indicated

Guideline 4

“At the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes.”

The additional time enables us to gently bring silence into everyday life
Minimum time 20 minutes
Practice two periods of Centering Prayer daily

Practical Ways to Deepen our Relationship with God

Practice two 20 – 30 minute periods of Centering Prayer daily
Attend the remaining six continuing sessions of this Introduction to the Centering Prayer Practice
Join an ongoing Centering Prayer group and attend 11th step meetings
Study Open Mind, Open Heart by Thomas Keating and other spiritual literature

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

It Can Be Done - the Buddha's Kusala Sutta

It can be done! If it couldn't be done, I would not say ‘It can be done.’

It can be done, so I say: ‘It can be done.’

Buddha, Kusala Sutta, from the Anguttara Nikaya..

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Monday, April 12, 2010

Eleven Tricks To Teach You How to Love Your Self.

1. Everyday, ask yourself the following question,"What makes me a good person?" The answer must be something positive and asked/answered before you eat breakfast/brush your teeth.

2. Think of all the things you don't like about yourself and write down the OPPOSITE. Your brain is a computer and it absorbs what you want it to know. Remind yourself that your a wonderful, beautiful person and no one can tell you different.

3. Make a List of Things you Like About Yourself. Ask Others to add to your List

4. Treat yourself like you own best friend. Pay attention to your own life first and formost. Invest actions in your own life that build a relationship with yourself.

5. Mother yourself. Nurture, nourish, pamper, cultivate, bring up yourself.

6. Pay yourself a compliment out loud.

7. Wear only nice underwear.

8. Avoid controversy and opinions by humbly seeking understanding and live in common unity of purpose.

9. Develop a thicker skin and look for the positive intention behind what people say.

10. Look at yourself in a full-length mirror and find something that you like.

11. Do a good deed everyday. Any positive action that helps someone else is good.
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