Meditation is not as foreign to Christianity as many think. Meditation is mentioned frequently in the book of Psalms for instance, though notably the focus of the psalmists is much more on the who than the how of it, as is typical of Jewish and Christian practice. What follows is a sizeable collection of images … Continue reading Visions of a Meditating Jesus
Meditation is not always easy, but getting started is quite simple. In his book Christian Meditation, James Finley lays out some basic guidelines: "The guidelines for meditation practice that I suggest are, with respect to the body, to sit still, to sit straight, to close your eyes or lower them toward the ground, to breathe slowly and … Continue reading Christian Meditation – James Finley
The following extract comes from, "Cultivating Visions through Exegetical Meditations" by Dan Merkur, an article from "With Letters of Light: Studies in the Dead Sea Scrolls, Early Jewish Apocalypticism, Magic, and Mysticism" by Daphna V. Arbel and Andrei A. Orlov (Eds.) What I found fascinating in this article is Merkur's suggestion of direct correlations between the letters to … Continue reading Cultivating Visions through Biblical Meditations
Francis of Assisi once said, "It is good to read the testimonies of Scripture; it is good to seek the Lord our God in them. As for me, however, I have already made so much of Scripture my own that I have more than enough to meditate on and turn over in my mind. I need … Continue reading Does meditation need to be complex?
"Eastern meditation emphasizes abandonment. Such meditation has total relinquishment as its aim. To the Asian mystics the highest stage of enlightenment is complete self-emptying. For Christians, however, emptying isn't the end of the story; it's just the beginning. Jesus emptied himself so he could be filled to overflowing." Deep-Rooted in Christ: The Way of Transformation … Continue reading Nothing and Everything
"So it behoves us, if we would have Christ for a frequent guest, to fill our hearts with faithful meditations on the mercy He showed in dying for us, and on His mighty power in rising again from the dead." - Bernard of Clairvaux, On Loving God
I was meditating this afternoon when it struck me that I should say something about the relationship between revelation and meditation, particularly from a Christ-centred perspective. Many forms of meditation, such as Zen and Yoga, focus on immediate experience. I have no problem with this, so far as it goes, yet I think its worth … Continue reading Revelation and Meditation
Do you realise there is more in the scriptures about meditation than there is about speaking in tongues? The Psalms contain many explicit references to meditation. More implicitly, both the Old Testament and New Testament affirm the practice of reflecting and remembering God's word and works, of being mindful and searching our hearts, of seeking … Continue reading Meditation in the Scriptures
While I was on holidays I had opportunity to reflect on my meditation practice and where I’d been experiencing difficulties. In particular, I’ve been experiencing some double mindedness over the use of non-Christian relaxation techniques on the one hand, and the whole issue of self exploration on the other. Firstly, regarding non-Christian relaxation techniques, I’ve … Continue reading Christian Meditation and Self Exploration
I have been thinking about meditation and prayer today, particularly in terms of how different understandings of Christianity can lead to different approaches to meditation. You may recall my recent comments on the differences between Dispensational, Covenant and Christocentric theology? Well, how might that feed into a discussion on meditation and prayer? I would like … Continue reading Meditation, Anabaptist style
There are many ways to incorporate listening into your spiritual practice; here are three broad ways. Listening to God. If prayer is a conversation with God then surly we should listen to God as prayerful as we talk to God? I often begin my prayers with the words of Samuel, "Speak Lord, your servant is … Continue reading Listening to God, self and others
How does Christian meditation differ from eastern meditation? One answer that seems to be pretty popular amongst Christians these days is that Christian meditation is about “filling the mind” whereas eastern meditation is about “emptying the mind”. But this answer has always struck me as overly simplistic, to the point of being downright misleading. I … Continue reading How does Christian meditation differ from eastern meditation?