Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spiritual Direction

I left my spiritual director behind in Virginia. I was surprised when I got to EDS that the school did not supply us with spiritual directors (VTS offers this to its seminarians) and does not maintain a relationship with SSJE -- apparently there is a wait list. Ahh, guess being a seminarian a few blocks away does not give priority.

I spent 1 hour 30 minutes communiting on the 'T' out to Boston College. I did not realize I was going to a convent. It was nice though to connect with someone in a spiritual direction capacity. I admitted my frustration with centering prayer (i don't think it's the practice for me) and my visit to the Zen Center (another visit is in order!). I said my prayer life was as dry as the desert and how profoundly frustrating that is. What would I tell teenagers about prayer and purpose in praying when it is dry, dull, seems one sided and lackluster. To pray should be to feel God's presence. The absence in prayer can be downright depressing. The SD said it could be a period of faitfulness. But why is that necessary? Two years! It is the same story - I prayed, acted on the felt response (joy),did what G*d wanted, and we'll leave it at that.

I think, though, spiritual direction is a discipline that is highly recommended to those who want to "go deep" in their prayer life.

A different practice

I appreciate Tony Jones's book but I'm more interested in spending my energy on incorporating a practice that works for me.

It's dark, lights out, candle flaming, prayer filled poetry.....and traditional adoration, thanksgiving and intercession. Flamenco or taize in the background.

I have also found tai chi can be invigorating.

I had a long conversation last week about some of the problems with Christianity -- that it is a disembodied religion. We need to borrow from Native American and shamanic traditions. Anglicans are supposed to be embracers of incarnational theology. That means our bodies are central to our lives of worship and prayer....I'll blog on what my new spiritual director says about this!

Centering praye is very,very slow.