Silent Sunday

The hope of radiance

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The theme for this silent Sunday is the remarkable description in Colossians 1:27 of "the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in us, the hope of glory". I invite you to join in with the music, readings and reflections around this theme.

Opening music:

Be still and knowSimon de Voil
00:00 / 03:48

Lyrics:

Be still and know that I am God

Be still and know that I am

Be still and know that I 

Be still and know that 

Be still and know 

Be still and 

Be still 

Be 

Visio Divina (Sacred Gazing):

Have a candle ready for this sacred gazing practise. 


Before lighting the candle:

  • Start with looking at the candle in front of you.

  • Spend some time looking at the structure of the wax, and the shape and colour of the candle.


Now light the candle:

  • Look at the flame.

  • Notice what is happening to the wax.

  • Spend some time looking and listening to what this candle might be saying to you.



Centering prayer / meditation:

Spend some time in silent prayer now (you can choose between a 10 minute timer and a 20 minute timer below, which each have a gong at the beginning and three gongs at the end). You could bring this candle image into your time of centering prayer -  when letting go of your thoughts, picture allowing them to gently melt away, making way for the light of Presence. You could even say to your thoughts: "Melt like wax" as you let them go, or simply use your sacred word or breath when returning to presence.

Ten minute silence timerGuided Prayer
00:00 / 10:25
Twenty minute silence timerGuided Prayer
00:00 / 20:28

Listen to the following music as an ending to the time of prayer:

LuminosaLibera Boys Choir
00:00 / 05:42

Lyrics:

Beata
Sempitern
Gloriosa

Star of heaven, send your light on me
Star of day, shine through the dark

Beata nominum,
Beata lumina

Aurora stella claro luna
Aurora nocte luminosa

Beata nominum,
Beata sempiterna
Iluminosa, gloriosa

Ave, Ave
Maris stella
Nocte silentium
Mater Dei
Semper coelestium
Maris Stella
Ave virgo clarissima
Gloriosa

Star of heaven, send your light on me
Star of day, shine through the dark

Beata nominum,
Beata lumina

Aurora stella claro luna
Aurora nocte luminosa

Beata nominum,
Beata sempiterna
Beata, sempiterna, gloriosa

Illumina

Reflection:

Read the following readings through twice or three times, with an attitude of open receptivity.


2 Corinthians 4:6-7

"For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.  But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us."


John 1:5

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”


The bright field

I have seen the sun break through

to illuminate a small field

for a while, and gone my way

and forgotten it. But that was the pearl

of great price, the one field that had

the treasure in it. I realize now

that I must give all that I have

to possess it. Life is not hurrying

on to a receding future, nor hankering after

an imagined past. It is the turning

aside like Moses to the miracle

of the lit bush, to a brightness

that seemed as transitory as your youth

once, but is the eternity that awaits you.

     ~ Celtic prayer


For Further Reflection:

I encourage you to spend some time in further reflection on this theme. Below are some of the quotes from the talk and additional quotes for you to take this theme further.


Colossians 1:27

 "...the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in us, the hope of glory".


Richard Rohr: 

"Long before Jesus’s personal incarnation, Christ was deeply embedded in all things—as all things!"


Hildegard of Bingen: 

The Word is living, being, spirit, all verdant greening, all creativity. This Word manifests itself in every creature.”


Thomas Merton: 

"This “I” is Christ living in us: and we, in Christ, living in the Father (Source)."


Martin Laird: 

"Christ is not considered to be an object of awareness, but the reason why awareness is becoming more luminous."


Matthew 5:14,15 

You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bushel. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.”


Rumi: 

Your task is not to seek for love,
but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself
that you have built against love.


Ilie Cioara: 

"Attentive and lucid, the whole being is like a flame, spreading light, extended into Infinity."


Jean Yves-Leloup: 

"The Shabbat is a moment of halting our churning mental apparatus, when time is suspended . . . Then it is possible for a flame to burn from the heart of humanity, an echo of the pure and simple I AM."


Jean Yves-Leloup: 

"The early Christians saw the fire in the Christ as a return of the fire of the burning bush. To approach the Christ is to approach the fire and to hear the same voice of the unnamable: I AM. If that fire burns us, it is because we have not yet become fire ourselves. The only cure … is to become the Christ—in other words, to make room for the Christ to manifest inside us, to allow our dry, dead wood to catch fire, burst into flames, and shine like the light of the Pentecost."


Thomas Merton:

“In Louisville, at the corner of Fourth and Walnut, in the center of the shopping district, I was suddenly overwhelmed with the realization that I loved all these people, that they were mine and I theirs, that we could not be alien to one another even though we were total strangers. It was like waking from a dream of separateness, of spurious self-isolation in a special world. . . .

This sense of liberation from an illusory difference was such a relief and such a joy to me that I almost laughed out loud. . . . I have the immense joy of being man, a member of a race in which God Himself became incarnate. As if the sorrows and stupidities of the human condition could overwhelm me, now that I realize what we all are. And if only everybody could realize this! But it cannot be explained. There is no way of telling people that they are all walking around shining like the sun.

Then it was as if I suddenly saw the secret beauty of their hearts, the depths of their hearts where neither sin nor desire nor self-knowledge can reach, the core of their reality, the person that each one is in God’s eyes. If only they could all see themselves as they really are. If only we could see each other that way all the time. There would be no more war, no more hatred, no more cruelty, no more greed. . . . But this cannot be seen, only believed and ‘understood’ by a peculiar gift.”


Ending Prayer:

Radiant Christ, Essence of Jesus, and of all that is,

help me to spread your fragrance everywhere I go;

flood my soul with your Spirit and Life.

Liberate and interweave through my whole being so utterly

that every soul I come in contact with may feel your presence in my soul.

Let them look up and see no longer me, but only Christ.

Stay with me, then I shall begin to shine as you shine:

so to shine as to be a light to others.

The light, Oh Radiant One, will be all from you, none of it will be mine;

it will be you shining on others through me.

Let me thus praise you in the way you love best,

by shining on those around me.

Let me preach you without preaching,

not by words but by Presence,

by spacious equanimity, by the sympathetic influence of all that I do,

by the evident fullness of the love that my heart bears toward you,

Amen


(Adapted from a prayer by Cardinal Newman and Fran Bennet)




Ending music:

This little light of mineLoretta Tharpe
00:00 / 02:56

Lyrics:

This little light of mine,
I'm gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine,
I'm gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine,
I'm gonna let it shine,
let it shine, let it shine, oh let it shine.


Ev'rywhere I go,
I'm gonna let it shine.
Ev'rywhere I go,
I'm gonna let it shine.
Ev'rywhere I go,
I'm gonna let it shine,
let it shine, let it shine, oh let it shine.


All around me,
I'm gonna let it shine.

All around me,
I'm gonna let it shine.

All around me,
I'm gonna let it shine,

let it shine, let it shine, oh let it shine.


(You can watch a video of this incredible woman, Rosetta Tharpe, performing this song by clicking this link.)

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Sharon's book that was previously called "Contemplative Living" has been republished by AnamChara Books under the title "Deeper: Finding the Depth Dimension Beneath the Surface of Life". The Kindle version is available from Amazon, and the hard copy version can be ordered from loot.co.za or from your local bookshop through Ingram Distribution.