Meditation, contemplation, and prayer are ancient arts thousands of years old in world religious traditions, and as new as the latest brain research in neuroscience. Here we explore ancient and newly discovered lore and insights. In addition to building our Sunday afternoon worship at 5 PM around contemplative prayer and healing, we offer a meditation and prayer group on Tuesday evenings at 6PM for those who wish to seriously grow in trust in Spirit working in our lives. Please also call John Biersdorf at 248-345-6941 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions and further information, and contact Dawn Ryan at email@example.com to receive our weekly e-mail.
If you are interested in learning more about meditation and prayer, and deepening your own practice, a community meditation group can empower, support and deepen your own personal life of prayer and meditation. Our community meditation group offers teaching from a variety of sources to deepen and broaden your own practice. We meet at Peace Lutheran Church from 6 to 7 PM every Tuesday evening. Each meeting includes prayer, an important teaching, usually from a DVD, psalm reading, a thirty minute time of silent communal contemplative prayer, sharing and closing.
Whether you are new to the practice of contemplative prayer, or a veteran of many years of silence and meditation, a community meditation group can be so important in supporting and deepening our own spiritual life.
There are many different and important methods and teachings on meditation and prayer. Among them we use Centering Prayer. It was developed by Fr. Thomas Keating and others, and the Contemplative Outreach community he founded. It is a way of making the rich heritage of contemplative prayer in the Christian tradition accessible in our contemporary culture. It is not meant to replace other forms of prayer, but to cast a new light and depth of meaning on them. It is at the same time a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship. It is a movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with God. The longing and desire for closeness and communion with God is God’s gift to us.
The practice of Centering prayer is both simple and profound, and we explore it in different ways. In brief outline, the guidelines for this practice are as follows:
- Choose a sacred word as the symbol of your intention to consent to God’s presence and action.
- Sitting comfortably, and with eyes closed or resting softly downward, settle briefly and silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God’s presence and action.
- When occupied by other thoughts, feelings and mental distractions, return ever-so-gently to the sacred word.
At the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes.