Today’s post is another insightful reflection and meditation from retreat presenters Susan Boruff and Kathy Anderson. We’re so grateful for all of their submissions for our blog during the pandemic and look forward to being able to host them at the Center again soon. Let’s take a few quiet moments to read this reflection by Susan and then watch the video meditation at the end by Kathy.
Eyes to See
By: Susan Boruff
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. ~Jesus
Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. ~Jesus
When Kathy and I teach our Lenten retreats we always teach the Self-Examen. The Examen is an exercise of self-awareness and is not just limited to the Lenten period. It is an invitation to look at our own hearts. It is a spiritual practice to be done daily. It helps us have “eyes to see and ears to hear.”
Jesuit priest, Anthony de Mello states, “people have no freedom to love until they are really aware of themselves.”
The invitation is to “look at ourselves.” The Holy prophet Muhammad said, “Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord.”
I have a question for you.
How do you see God? Do you see God as an old white man with a long, white beard? Do you see God as divine, mothering love? Do you see God as angry, wrathful, punishing and judgmental? Do you see God as “out there somewhere?” Do you see God with you, in you and around you? Do you see God as “someone” to fear? Do you see God as merciful, loving and forgiving? Do you see God as some combination of these?
How you see God is what you become. According to neuroscience, specifically the Hebbian principle, we become what we focus on.
We need to be aware of what we are focusing on. How we see affects how we live.
According to Fr. Richard Rohr, “Jesus did not come to change the mind of God about humanity. It did not need changing. Jesus came to change the mind of humanity about God! God is not someone to be afraid of but is the Ground of Being and on our side.” God is good, supportive, loving and wise and invites us to be the same. GOOD, SUPPORTIVE, LOVING and WISE.
What if you could do a practice every day that taught you how to let go of your limited beliefs and thoughts about God and yourself? What if this practice changed your heart? What if this practice helped you dissolve the walls of fear, anger and mistrust that you have built around your heart? What if this practice helped you love God and love yourself and love your neighbor as yourself?
What if this practice took about 12 minutes a day? Is it worth it? Is now the time?
The first step in self-awareness is to become aware of the contents of our minds. Examining our hearts in meditation allows us to “see” the contents of our mind. This happens in silence before our loving God.
We cannot love God if we do not love ourselves. To love ourselves we must let go of the walls of fear and anger and mistrust that we have built around our hearts. This is a great struggle. It takes Great Love to do this. Or what Jesus refers to as Great Belief or Faith. This work helps us grow in our ability to love, show mercy, forgive, and do justice.
If we keep our focus on our hearts that burn for God, our burning hearts will melt the walls we have built.
Then we will have eyes to see.
“To have God speak to the heart is a majestic experience, an experience that people may miss if they monopolize the conversation and never pause to hear God’s responses.” ~ Rev. Charles Stanley
“The eye through which I see God is the same eye through which God sees me; my eye and God’s eye are one eye, one seeing, one knowing, one love.” ~ Meister Eckhart
You are now invited to examine how you see God with Kathy for 12 minutes. Find a quiet place to sit with your back straight, which opens up your chest and opens up your heart to receive. The meditation is 12 minutes and includes several pauses for silent reflection.
Please Subscribe and visit Susan and Kathy, learn more about their Take Twelve initiative, by visiting their website: taketwelvetoday.com