Thursday, July 17, 2008

ancient prayer revisited, part 3

ok, so what is meant in the last post by a rule

in the context of ancient prayer, a rule is a set of practices which, if diligently applied, deepens our prayer life and open to us the presence of God. a medieval example of this is the rule of st. benedict which has been used for centuries to guide the way monasteries exercise the faith.
(later on, at the end of this series, i will share resources that have helped me. so, for now, to read more about st. benedict's rule go here and here)

finding and practicing a rule for your life:
  • stimulates and strengthens a spiritual orientation to each day
  • daily clears space for you to become intimate with the lord, when the lord would so choose to make himself known
  • strangely, and over time, allows the healing power of the spirit to bubble up in your soul, fostering long-term changes in attitude, emotions and relationships (i should add, however, this is not why the rule is practiced. that is we do not pray in order to get something from the lord. we pray because he alone has the word of eternal life, so to whom should we go for partnership? said another way, if we never received any direct benefit from the practice of prayer, we still must pray)