Sunday, September 30, 2018

Spirituality Study Group notes

Our group's constructive spiritual remedy for countervailing forces is centering prayer at the start of our morning discussion.  This prayer helps collect, integrate, and recall all our varied mental/emotional situations during the previous week.   We groaned upon mention that a conservative evangelist had prayed, "God, let those who oppose Brett Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court have confusion." 

The Soul provides an omnipresent heartful constructive response:
1.  (Day)  "Christian prayer is raising everyone's boat with your heart, getting buoyant above/outside of one's box."
2.  (Ruth) "Our synapses are opened up/benefited in Christian prayer by stepping back and not reacting."
3.  Check out the following comical dramatic sketch URL: "I'm not dead yet!" in the film, Monte Python and the Holy Grail.

The book clarifies one's experience of negativity in constructive prayer:
"Throughout the week of dialogues, the Archbishop said many times that we should not berate ourselves for our negative thoughts and emotions, that they are natural and unavoidable.  They are only made more intense, he argued, by the glue of guilt and shame when we think we should not have them.  The Dalai Lama agreed that human emotions are natural, but he did argue about whether they are unavoidable.  Mental immunity, he explained, is the way to avoid them.

"Through self-inquiry and meditation, we can discover the nature of the mind and learn to soothe our emotional reactivity.  This will leave us less vulnerable to the destructive emotions and thought patterns that cause us so much suffering.  This is the process of developing mental immunity."
For Next Week:  Please read "Fear, Stress, and Anxiety:  I would Be Very Nervous", p. 93-108.

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