Saturday, June 24, 2017
I am very aware that I need to keep my spiritual "garden" free of weeds so that I can listen better and maintain a high level of conscious contact with God. The most troublesome "weeds" recently have been judgment and self-righteousness, neither of which do I need. One of the factors that have brought them to my attention is my reading of historical Quaker literature which is replete with each. I find that the literature contains some good, mystical guidance but also a lot of self-pride at the gifts and criticism of those that do not choose the same path. The reading is a good reminder of what I don’t want.
Friday, June 23, 2017
Today was a day of quiet, patient (mostly!) listening for guidance, meaning meditation, contemplation and the mundane activities that allow them, like walking and weeding. Many of my activities including the work at Gettysburg and mentoring involve "humble and hidden activities", meaning lots of work with little ego gratification since no one knows. I like the words of Patricia Loring, "It requires even more discernment to discover whether the ministry called for from a particular individual in a particular instance requires prophetic speech, humble and hidden activities, bold and dramatic action, professional service or some ,novel and previously unimagined course." I attempt to listen and take whatever action is required. She goes on to say "To undertake to live a discerned life, to endeavor daily to be attuned to authentic movements of the Spirit leading us into greater fullness of life, is a strenuous undertaking."
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
I have been reading Healing The Heart Of Democracy: The Courage To Create a Politics Worthy of the Human Spirit, by Parker J. Palmer. I have only read the first few chapters in which he outlines our political position quite well, as have others in the past. He uses words well and obviously enjoys his use of language. However, as Seeger points out "To understand better the value of silence in daily life, and its relation to this spiritual transformation for which we yearn, it is useful first to consider the limitation of language, of words......It is next useful to contemplate the limitations of logical reasoning." It occurs to me that words are easy but we need loving actions. Again, as Seeger says "It [inner silence] is to establish an inner peace, an inner harmony, which will allow us authentically to contribute to the establishment of an outer peace and an outer harmony in the world at large." We can certainly take the necessary actions - I’m interested to find out what he recommends.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
I spent most of today exercising, meditating and connecting/talking with people about my doubts - I feel like a toilet that has been well flushed. Intense exercise is good for getting in touch with feelings. Meditating is good for sorting out my feelings, which I then release through talking and meditating. One message I heard clearly is "have all the doubts you want, just keep doing it." It’s good for me to keep in touch with myself followed by processing and flushing.
Monday, June 19, 2017
Tonight I am struggling to believe that I truly am the person I want to be, that within humility, love and God that I’m as powerful as I seem. While doing the healing, connecting, working with spirits or working with people I have no doubts - I just do it. It’s during the quiet in between times that the doubts come up. That’s when my brain attacks me. I recall the words of Williamson that "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." It’s time to sort through my doubts in meditation.
Sunday, June 18, 2017
I have been reading about various global, international, national and private levels of efforts at non-violent approaches to the prevention of violence and war, including the fact that the pre-emptive approach of the U.S. works against that approach. I find that encouraging and agree with the phrase "there is no way to peace, peace is the way". Unfortunately, as Seeger points out "From everywhere, it seems, we are bombarded with the idea that our nature is innately violent, that our chief preoccupation is with our sexuality, and that our main purpose in life is the acquirement of ever more nifty possessions. We, unquestionably, have a violent side but we also have a non-violent, loving side. I have lived and acted on each and much prefer the loving part of my nature.