Monday, March 22, 2010

Reflections On The Beatitudes

The following thoughts were written by a woman named Christine Valters Paintner. Check out her website at www.Abbeyof the

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven

Where are the places you are poor in spirit - longing to surrender yourself to something much bigger than your own ego? Where are the places where you feel like an exile in the world?

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted

Grief tells us that we loved deeply, that we are passionate. Where in your heart do you experience a grief that lingers, that is calling for some attention?

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth

To be meek, means to have softened what is rigid within; to be like the fertile soil which receives its nourishment from the rain, allowing it to seep down into its substance. Is there a place within you that is longing to soften and yield? Is there a tender place longing to emerge and be expressed?

Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy

Those who are merciful are the ones who extend grace, they also receive grace in return. Where in your heart do you experience the longing for grace and mercy? Where is the part of yourself that offers mercy and grace?

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God

To be pure in heart means to live in congruity between your inner life and your outer life, it means to live from an awareness of the sacred pulsing in your own heart moment by moment and in the world around you. Where in your life do you have a longing for integrity and for seeing God?

Blessed are the Peacemakers; for they shall be called the children of God

The peacemakers are those who seek to bring peace to their own hearts so that their interactions with others come from a place of peace, who extend the practice of shalom into the world. Where in your heart do you experience the longing to make peace? What are you feeling in conflict with?

Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you (falsely) because of me.

What are the quiet voices within you which have been persecuted? How have you shut out the wisdom of these smaller selves? How might you begin to make more room for them to emerge?

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