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Daily Meditations

REPENTANCE IN THE PHILOKALIA (Part III) »

July 2nd, 2019

Theognostos (fourteenth century?) is known to us only as the author of the work included in the Philokalia. “When you fall from a higher state, do not become panic-stricken, but through remorse, grief, rigorous self-reproach, and, above all, through copious tears shed in a contrite spirit, correct yourself and return quickly to your former condition. Rising up again after your fall, you will enter the joyous valley of salvation, taking […]

True Self and False Self: Our Ultimate Identity »

July 1st, 2019

Thomas Merton (1915-1968) developed wonderful insights into the true self and false self. James Finley, one of CAC’s core faculty members, lived and prayed with Merton for six years at the Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky. This week Jim shares some of what he learned from this great contemplative teacher. Merton’s whole spirituality, in one way or another, pivots on the question of ultimate human identity. Merton’s message is that […]

An Artist’s Eye and the Kingdom of God »

June 28th, 2019

Fr. Stephen Freeman, April 29, 2015  Eyes they have but do not see. I have a daughter who is an artist. Her art is a gift that eludes me. The wonder is not so much in the skill of her hands but in her eyes. For having watched this phenomenon grow up and mature, I am certain of one thing: she sees the world in a way I do not. It is not […]

Persons in Communion: The Disciplines of Communion (Part II) »

June 27th, 2019

The training of our consciousness enables us to recover an immediacy of response to anybody’s face, however spoilt, haggard, or careworn, and precisely because it is such. God loves this person here and now, in their very ordinariness, their cowardice, their loneliness, their sin. Our consciousness being awakened, the eye of the heart is opened, and we begin to see with the eyes of God. Then we can put ourselves […]

The Desert and Temptation (Part IV) »

June 26th, 2019

Without temptation the monks become careless. They let themselves go, and so live any old way. Temptations force them to live consciously, to exercise discipline, and to be wakeful. Thus the monks don’t pray for temptations to stop, but for God to give them enough strength. The story was told of Mother Sarah, that for thirteen years she endured being violently assaulted by demons of impurity. She never prayed for […]