An ongoing practice recognizes that there is a transcendent mystery beyond the techniques that a practice employs. Awakening is not the end result of a systematized process. Reawakening love and intimacy for one’s self and beyond requires practice. This is not because love is something far away from us but because we forget. We forget that intimacy is near. We forget how to relax with others. We forget we are whole. Realization is a kind of remembering rather than an achievement or virtuosic accomplishment. Practice awakens the dormant and often invisible interiors of mind, body, and heart in order to establish a more tender, responsive, creative and active self…..Michael Stone
we want to run into the tender arms of love’s all-knowing ways……yet, we stumble, argue and deny……what is most revealing about the inner fire and its complacent sister, doubt, is the indivisible reconciliation of effort and letting go…..may we learn the practical nature of love…..
I am blind and do not see the things of this world; but when the Light comes from Above, it enlightens my heart and I can see, for the Eye of my heart sees everything. The heart is a sanctuary at the center of which there is a little space, wherein the Great Spirit dwells, and this is the Eye. This is the Eye of the Great Spirit by which He sees all things and through which we see Him. If the heart is not pure, the Great Spirit cannot be seen, and if you should die in this ignorance, your soul cannot return immediately to the Great Spirit, but it must be purified by wandering about in the world. In order to know the center of the heart where the Great Spirit dwells you must be pure and good, and live in the manner that the Great Spirit has taught us. The man who is thus pure contains the Universe in the pocket of his heart……Black Elk
I sense that there is something very special about the transformed qualities of faith, love, and hope. This is very hard to describe, and my attempts always feel shabby, but I must try. In their truly contemplative and transformed state, faith, hope, and love are tied to no particular ends; they have no object. Contemplative faith is not faith that God exists, that life is essentially good, or that this or that is true. All such things are beliefs, not faith. Faith is, instead, a way of being, completely open, empty, as St. John of the Cross would say, of all specifics. Contemplative faith is more like a continual fire of goodness, warming and illuminating every breath. Contemplative love is completely beyond comprehension. It is not love of some things to the exclusion of others, for that would be attachment. True love is like some infinite way of being that we become part of: a flowing energy of willingness, an eternal yes resounding with every heartbeat. And contemplative hope, the transformed hope, is also completely open and free. It is not hope for peace or justice or healing; that also would be attachment. It is just hope, naked hope, a bare energy of open expectancy…..Gerald May