Spiritual Practice of the week: Practicing Compassion
Compassion is the active regarding of life through the eyes of love,
seeing value in all people and situations.
This committed work of mind and heart restores one’s own equilibrium and sense of belovedness,
allowing for ourselves, and all others,
to be known as valued members of humanity.
True compassion also offers a spirit of engagement beyond the human connection to all matters,
natural and otherwise,
so that we see the sacred in ourselves, in other people,
in animals and plants and all the elements of water and earth and air and fire.
We see through the eyes of love the world brought to life,
and in it, we welcome a new richness into our own earthy adventure.
"Compassion is the heartbeat of humanity.
We are most fully ourselves, when we see someone in the truth of his or her experience and are moved to respond with kindness and care. . . Pausing from the busyness of our lives and recognizing the tender humanity of another restores us to our own humanity. The pulse of care and connection within us resuscitates. Our hearts, normally dulled by the day's burdens, beat freely with love. And the ensuing kindness we extend to others has the power to resuscitate their spirits as well. For compassion not only restores the heart of our own humanity; its healing care makes human once more the heart of another grown hard and cold." (Frank Rogers)
"There are three movements within the practice of compassion.
Firstly, this path invites us to know, in the depth of our souls, a compassion that holds and heals us.
Second, the path of compassion invites us to be liberated from the internal turbulence that disconnects us from our compassionate core.
Third, the path of compassion invites us to feel genuine
compassion towards others
Each person is surrounded by a cosmic circle of care and beheld by a face whose eyes gaze upon him or her as beloved. Holding others in the light of this love opens our heart more fully toward them." (Frank Rogers)
On this particular day, may we open our hearts to our mothers
and the mothering people who have loved us into being.
Good Sabbath, Morning,
And for all of you who have a mother, Happy Celebrating Mother’s Day. Mothering is associated with nurturing, and somewhere along the way all of us had someone who nurtured us, or we would simply not be here. Possibly you will have had a number of people who took that role upon themselves, and today, this Sunday, we take time to consider how we might better understand those who have cared for us and loved us, and in doing so, become ever more compassionate towards ourselves, which benefits the world greatly.
It is good to be reminded that everyone we encounter is fighting a great battle, something we can’t see and can’t understand. Somehow knowing that, gives us courage for our internal battle – to be good, to find our best selves, to see that everything and everyone does not bear the mark of commercial branding, but of its creator, which is a mystery we cannot unravel. And so, it follows that if everyone is fighting a great battle, they require our respect and our compassion as an accompaniment for their journey.
And given that this is Mother’s Day weekend, I would like us to consider applying this thought exercise to the person or persons who have offered the great gift of nurture to us as we reflect on a grounding principle of practicing compassion: we are not privileged with knowing the motives behind other people's actions. That privilege belongs to god alone.
Consider your mother and the mothering you received. Was it perfect? No. Was it what you wanted? Maybe not. Were there elements within it that harmed you? Most likely.
But consider this. The person who bore you inside their body risked their life to bring you into this world and for that they deserve your eternal gratitude. No other person in the entire history of humanity was able or willing to do that. Measure the weight of that gift and recognize it as considerable. And as to the nurturing, the teaching, the caring, see that as an additional bonus so that no matter the largess or the smallness of it, is still a reason for endless gratitude.
Our podcast calls you to the practice of compassion, for yourself, for your mother, for all of God's children.
Every blessing this very cool Sunday morning in May,
Call to Worship
Motherhood is all about leaving.
Every exhale of breath leaves behind the person you were,
every inhale of breath breathes into you that
which you are becoming.
And so it is for the child,
breath in, breath out,
a moving target shooting through the cosmos
leaving behind what was,
leaning into what will be,
mother and child dancing together
bound by the tenacious threads of the spirit that hold
them in tenderest embrace.
To dance, to breathe, to hold the beloved and to be the beloved,
this is to know the melody of the heart
which echoes throughout the universe.
Did you Enjoy our Seven Sacred Pauses Conversations?
Join us for our new book study/reflections beginning this Friday Evening - May 8th
Friday at 7 pm
Practicing Compassion, Frank Rogers Jr., Living Compassion. Andrew Dreitcer
The book is called 'Practicing Compassion' but I will also be working with a similar book, 'Living Compassion'. They are similar, one is more ecumenical, the other is particularly Christian. They are practical books. They tell us HOW to be compassionate - and it is not always an easy business.
Meeting ID: 826 7178 8158
Jesus was in the business of transformation.
And the practice of compassion has that power.
Please join us on Friday as we come to understand, and practice, this simple, straight forward path that is a profound part of the Christian tradition, but it not in any way limited to those within it.