It may be accompanied by prostrations and the sign of the cross, signaled by beads strung along the prayer rope at intervals. … The Jesus Prayer, and Meditation A brief note about the ‘formal’ practice of the prayer (or any form of meditation): As soon as we sit to meditate, a bunch of thoughts surge into our consciousness. We are unfulfilled if our inmost spirit is not in touch with the Spirit of God. Thus, the most important means of a life consecrated to praying is the invoked name of God, as it is emphasized since the 5th century by the Thebaid anchorites, or by the later Athonite hesychasts. Below is a simple prayer that can help us form this image in our minds and prepare us for a fruitful time of meditation. If you are unable to feel the breath in the nostrils, focus for a short time on the breathing process itself, the movement of the chest and lungs, and then transfer your awareness back to the breath in the nostrils. Ananda is a global spiritual movement, based on the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda, who showed how everyone can realize God in their daily lives as a tangible, loving reality. They only uttered Jesus’ name by which they were contemplating God. Others, like Father Archimandrite Ilie Cleopa, one of the most representative spiritual fathers of contemporary Romanian Orthodox monastic spirituality, talk about nine levels. Join us in celebrating a century of spiritual awakening. From meditation to contemplative prayer. Meditation is a means to rise to God, but not an end. The Eastern Orthodox mysticism has no images or representations. Theologically, the Jesus Prayer is considered to be the response of the Holy Tradition to the lesson taught by the parable of the Publican and the Pharisee, in which the Pharisee demonstrates the improper way to pray by exclaiming: "Thank you Lord that I am not like the Publican", whereas the Publican prays correctly in humility, saying "Lord have mercy on me, a sinner" (Luke 18:10-14). Monks often pray this prayer many hundreds of times each night as part of their private cell vigil ("cell rule"). Continue to mentally observe the breath, and to silently chant your word formula, still making no effort to control either the rhythm or depth of your breathing. The Mystery of Confession is linked to the spiritual development of the individual, and relates to the practice of choosing an elder to trust as his or her spiritual guide, turning to him for advice on the personal spiritual development, confessing sins, and asking advice. Honor is shown to these Sacred Wounds in many ways -- from the 5 grains of incense inserted into the Paschal Candle, to the custom of dedicating each Pater said in the body of the Dominican Rosary to one of the Five Wounds. This article is from Wikipedia, Jesus Prayer. [note 17] The practice of contemplative prayer has also been encouraged by the formation of associations like The Julian Meetings and the Fellowship of Meditation . Some theologians see meditation as distinct from prayer, but others do not; those who make a distinction define meditation as inwardly directed, and prayer as directed to something outside the self. Although some aspects of the Jesus Prayer may resemble some aspects of other traditions, its Christian character is central rather than mere "local color." Begin by exhaling completely. Thus, Theophan the Recluse, a 19th century Russian spiritual writer, talks about three stages: Once this is achieved the Jesus Prayer is said to become "self-active" (αυτενεργούμενη). One repents not because one is or isn’t virtuous, but because human nature can change. (Luke 17:20-21), The Jesus Prayer as written in her article was, “Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me.”, Please note that it does not include the traditional ending, “a poor sinner.” Paramhansa Yogananda taught that, “It is a sin to all yourself ‘a sinner.’”, Our God nature is our true state; our errors and ignorance along the way are temporary. Meditation is simply reflecting on God's word with the help of the Holy Spirit. The prayer of the heart itself, when the prayer is no longer something we do but who we are. The exact words of the prayer have varied from the simplest possible involving Jesus‘ name to the more common extended form: The Jesus Prayer is for the Eastern Orthodox one of the most profound and mystical prayers and it is often repeated continually as a part of personal ascetic practice. The Jesus Prayer (Η Προσευχή του Ιησού) or "The Prayer" (Euchee, Greek: Η Ευχή – the Wish), also called the Prayer of the Heart(Καρδιακή Προσευχή) and "Prayer of the Mind (Nous)" (Νοερά Προσευχή), is a short, formulaic prayer often uttered repeatedly. After making this a part of her daily life, she said that while she was still alone; she was no longer lonely, for she inwardly felt His presence with her always. Do this exercise three times to help rid your body of unconscious tensions. The Jesus Prayer Meditation is a wonderful spiritual tool to deepen your inner communion with Jesus Christ, and with the Infinite. We know that when we can’t pray, You listen to our heart. Love is the source of prayer; whoever draws from it reaches the summit of prayer. The individual experience of the Eastern Orthodox mystic most often remains unknown. This sense of His Presence will grow over time, with practice. Matthew 6:22. It will further enrich the spirituality of the many Christians who have found meditative repetition of the ancient Jesus Prayer to be a valuable devotional aid. Meditation in the Catholic tradition involves the intellect more than general “prayer,” but it can be said that meditation can be a form of prayer. “Jesus Prayer” Meditation The Jesus Prayer Meditation is a wonderful spiritual tool to deepen your inner communion with Jesus Christ, and with the Infinite. The practice of the Jesus Prayer is integrated into the mental ascesis undertaken by the Orthodox monastic in the practice of hesychasm. As the breath becomes calmer, so does the mind, and vice versa. A Lenten Meditation on the Jesus Prayer for the Health of your Soul. The breath reflects one’s mental state. As the next breath flows in, mentally watch it as if you were observing the flow of a tide. Try to feel His Light, or a warm Presence in your heart center. At once crystal clear and wonderfully insightful, we are invited to move through that doorway into a place of gloriously larger views of Jesus and God and of Life Itself than many of us have ever been blessed to behold.” –Neale Donald Walsch, author of Conversations with God. It stands that God’s essence (Greek: Οὐσία, ousia) is distinct from God’s energies, or manifestations in the world, by which men can experience the Divine. Swami Kriyananda taught this Jesus Prayer Meditation to a Catholic priest. People who say the prayer as part of meditation often synchronize it with their breathing; breathing in while calling out to God (Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God) and breathing out while praying for mercy (have mercy on me, a sinner). Jesus Christ Jesus . This must have been passed down intact from the time of Jesus, and then through the Desert Fathers, then up to this time!”, I was young and very enthusiastic. We are all God’s children and can serve as divine healing instruments. “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10), Proclaimed by Paramhansa Yogananda Presented by His Disciple, Swami Kriyananda, “…My fervent prayer is that this book, and its proclamation of Paramhansa Yogananda’s renewed revelation of Christ’s revelation, will initiate a renewal of dynamic, original faith in Jesus Christ…”, “Jesus Christ was sent to earth to proclaim the Heavenly Father’s love for us all, and to awaken love in our hearts for Him. The Jesus Prayer is Not a Form of Eastern Meditation or Yoga. Swami Kriyananda taught this Jesus Prayer Meditation to a Catholic priest. The initiative belongs to God, but presupposes man’s active acceptance (not an action only, but an attitude), which is a way of perpetually receiving God. That is why the prayers or words of such people do not produce any desired definite change in the order of things. I don’t often encourage people to read other books, but this one I recommend unreservedly.”, “Thomas à Kempis,” I remarked, “must have been a great saint. These are regrets/anger/shame about the past, or worries about the future. As stated at the local Council of Constantinople in 1157, Christ brought his redemptive sacrifice not to the Father alone, but to the Trinity as a whole. God bless you. This web site has been neither endorsed, nor approved by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.. Jesus Prayer was born out of the search for unceasing prayer. People sense these energies in us and feel good or bad about them. It should be noted here that the Jesus Prayer is ideally practiced under the guidance and supervision of a spiritual guide (pneumatikos, πνευματικός) especially when Psychosomatic techniques (like rhythmical breath) are incorporated. Ties to a similar prayer practice and theology appear in the 14th century work of an unknown English monk The Cloud of Unknowing. “…And Christians who imagine themselves inherently sinful, rather than sinning under the influence of delusion, would do well to meditate on the parable of the prodigal son, whose true home was in God. The hesychastic practice of the Jesus Prayer is founded on the biblical view by which God's name is conceived as the place of his presence. This tradition of reverential, devotional use of “the Holy Name” also exists for the name of the great Indian Master, Babaji: “Whenever anyone utters with reverence the name of Babaji,” Lahiri Mahasaya said, “that devotee attracts an instant spiritual blessing.” Autobiography of Yogi, by Paramhansa Yogananda. The use of the Jesus Prayer is recommended in the Ladder of Divine Ascent of St. John Climacus (ca.523–606) and in the work of St. Hesychios the Priest (ca. It is also helpful to move the index finger of the right hand slightly toward the palm on the inhalation and slightly away on the exhalation. Thus, for the Eastern Orthodox: A magistral way of meeting God for the Eastern Orthodox, the Jesus Prayer does not harbor any secrets in itself, nor does its practice reveal any esoteric truths. Plus the special bonus for your own private, unique and personal Jesus Christ prayers and meditations: My Prayer To Jesus ... Plus the complete Jesus Meditations transcripts/scripts ebook in PDF for students of meditation, and to deliver these meditations to others if desired. The Jesus Prayer Rosary will be welcomed by the growing number of people who are discovering that praying with beads can be a spiritually enriching and therapeutic experience. Orthodox writers speak of praying the Jesus Prayer as an “inner asceticism” and a “hidden martyrdom,” emphasizing the mystical aspect of repetitive prayer. Now you can transfer your point of concentration from the breath to the point between the eyebrows. a person well versed in Orthodox Theology but without official credentials, certificates, diplomas etc.) This point of energy is in you, even if you do not yet see that light. The terms used in the East are less legalistic (grace, punishment), and more medical (sickness, healing) with less exacting precision. Monks, nuns and spiritual hermits have left their troubles in the "civilized world" behind for centuries, initially escaping to the Egyptian desert. On the other hand, in the Christian … A quick Internet search brought up this devotional gem from the Catholic Catechism on praying unceasingly: “The invocation of the holy name of Jesus is the simplest way of praying always. A Prayer Meditation on the Sacred Heart of Jesus. During this fascinating one day workshop, you will be enlightened and empowered by the … Similarly to the flexibility of the practice of the Jesus Prayer, there is no imposed standardization of its form. The classic words to the prayer are as written above: Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. So, we are asking for help in dissolving our old karma, much in the same spirit as in the Lord’s Prayer, “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” Matthew 6:12. Lift your prayers to that point. St. Diadochos of Photiki refers in On Spiritual Knowledge and Discrimination to the automatic repetition of the Jesus Prayer, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, even in sleep. (a very common form), Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me. In this chapter, Henrik Rydell Johnsén discusses the early development of the meditative Jesus prayer in the fourth to seventh century, based on texts by three early monastic authors. Body, through the uttering of the prayer, mind, through the mental repetition of the prayer, are thus unified with "the heart" (spirit) and the prayer becomes constant, ceaselessly "playing" in the background of the mind, like a background music, without hindering the normal everyday activities of the person. Join Meredith from Methods in this contemplative meditation on the Kingdom of God. Moreover, the Eastern Orthodox theology of the Jesus Prayer enunciated in the 14th century by St. Gregory Palamas has never been fully accepted by the Roman Catholic Church. We know it’s the best response when we’re pushed beyond our limits. It is a point of inspiration in your body. Prayer is different. The early desert fathers thought this is what Paul the apostle had in mind when he said things like, "pray without ceasing".  It is also linked to the Song of Solomon‘s passage from the Old Testament: "I sleep, but my heart is awake" (Song of Solomon 5:2). The Jesus Prayer. All of these help contribute to training the mind to “pray unceasingly.”, In India they silently repeat “hong” with the incoming breath and “sau” with the exhalation. Modern Contemplative Prayer. What are the Mental Benefits (Promises) of Meditation? “…Man’s word is Spirit in man. Begin your meditation experience by practicing the following two relaxation techniques. In such contemplative prayer and prayerful contemplation, the spirit of man becomes one with the Spirit of God (cf. Paul Evdokimov, a 20th century Russian philosopher and theologian, writes about beginner’s way of praying: initially, the prayer is excited because the man is emotive and a flow of psychic contents is expressed. This is reflected in the Mystery of Confession for which, not being limited to a mere confession of sins and presupposing recommendations or penalties, it is primarily that the priest acts in his capacity of spiritual father. Celebrating 100 years of spiritual awakening with the anniversary of Yogananda’s arrival in the West. The practice of the Jesus Prayer is not the same as a far Eastern yoga, Hindu or Sufi practice. I describe the Jesus Prayer as spiritual food because I was experiencing its nourishment within myself due to my own practice. The redemption of man is not considered to have taken place only in the past, but continues to this day through theosis. If “of God” is stressed then we could realise more Jesus’ unity with the Father. It is from this condition, called by Saints John Climacus and Hesychios the "guard of the mind," that the monk is raised by the Divine grace to contemplation. The oral prayer (the prayer of the lips) is a simple recitation, still external to the practitioner. "While praying the Jesus Prayer, one might notice that sometimes the word “Lord” is pronounsed louder, more stressed, than the others, like: LORD Jesus Christ, (Son of God), have mercy on me, (a/the sinner). Author: Elton Streyle, Contributor: Noah, Photography and Editing: Ali. Such parallels (like between unusual psycho-spiritual experiences, breathing practices, postures, spiritual guidances of elders, peril warnings) might easily have arisen independently of one another, and in any case must be considered within their particular religious frameworks. Orthodox mysticism has no images or representations. Many believers would attest that the prayer has developed their prayer life and grown them in their relationship with God. L ent is a time when we intentionally practice liminal experiencesfasting, self-examination, silence, and so onin order to prepare our souls for unplanned liminal experiencesin order … There is a timeless and powerful principle in the reverence for the holy name. In Eastern traditions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Daoism) meditation is usually practiced with the purpose of transcending the mind and attaining enlightenment. On this website you will find articles which might be helpful while embarking on the path of … Philippians 2 : 10-11 That at the name of Jesus … This is referenced, of course, in The Third Commandment: Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain. Meditation: As the breath becomes calmer and more refined during meditation, there is a joyous feeling of peace and exaltation. The use of the prayer rope, however, is not compulsory and it is considered as an aid to the beginners or the "weak" practitioners, those who face difficulties practicing the Prayer. Please join us in this sacred service. Now our prayer is … A person that acts as a spiritual "father" and advisor. Κύριε Ιησού Χριστέ, Υιέ του Θεού, ελέησόν με τον αμαρτωλόν. It is one of the oldest forms of Christian meditation, whose tradition dates back to the Desert Fathers in the 4th century. Adapted, by Mary Kretzmann, from the book, How to Meditate, by John Novak. The technique of watching the breath should be done immediately following the preparatory techniques, (tensing and relaxing and even count breathing), when you are already relaxed and focused. Be it in Himself or in his … Icon of The Ladder of Divine Ascent (the steps toward theosis as described by St. John Climacus) showing monks ascending (and falling from) the ladder to Jesus. Then, with relaxation, you will find tensions being released that you didn’t even know existed. The Complete Jesus Meditations Scripts eBook. In the 19th-century book Meditations on the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, there are printed several inspiring meditations that help form our imaginations and let us see Jesus in a new light. He exclaimed, “I taught that to a Catholic priest years ago! The Jesus Prayer mantra is a phrase, which is thought to have originated in the practices of the ... Use a chime or sound of some sort to indicate the meditation time has begun. It is also very powerful to feel that you are sending this prayerful attention to Him from the point between the eyebrows, which is called the Christ center, or spiritual eye. When you are ready, begin to notice that you are breathing, recognizing that God is giving you your breath as a gift from moment to moment. Its practice is an integral part of the eremitic tradition of prayer known as Hesychasm (Greek: ἡσυχάζω, hesychazo, "to keep stillness"), the subject of the Philokalia (Greek: φιλοκαλείν, "love of beauty"), a collection of 4th to 15th century texts on prayer, compiled in the late 18th century by St. Nicodemus the Hagiorite and St. Makarios of Corinth. Lord, have mercy. For the Jesus Prayer Meditation, you can do the “even count breathing” with the numbers above, or using the Jesus Prayer: Inhale: “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me.” (9 syllables= 9 counts), Hold: “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me.”, Exhale: “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me.”, Inhale: “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me, Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me.” (18 syllables= 18 counts), Hold: “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me, Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me.”, Exhale: “Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me, Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me.”. The final stage of this cycle is the complete withdrawal of life current from the body and senses and the total concentration of the mind. In this episode, we explore an orienting prayer, as well as a practice known as The Jesus Prayer, or prayer of the heart. Though the Jesus Prayer has been practiced through the centuries as part of the Eastern tradition, in the 20th century it also began to be used in some Western churches, including some Roman Catholic and Anglican churches. “I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.” 1 Corinthians 15:31. The mystical practice (the prayer and the meditation) doesn’t lead to perceiving representations of God (see below Palamism). A Beautiful Meditation Prayer Lord, quiet my heart and still my soul as I wait on you during these moments alone. Adaptations by Mary Kretzmann: from “Watching the Breath Meditation” from the book, How to Meditate, by John Novak. Mary Kretzmann Ananda Healing Prayer Ministry, The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas à Kempis is a renowned spiritual classic, recommended by Paramhansa Yogananda. When we use the power of the Holy Name trivially, or “in vain,” and for no purpose, we cheapen that potential spiritual power within us. As general guidelines for the practitioner, different number of levels (3, 7 or 9) in the practice of the prayer are distinguished by Orthodox fathers. It's like a Christian mantra. When I turned the page to read about the techniques, I expected to see something akin to what I had learned from the book, “The Way of a Pilgrim,” the 19th century Russian spiritual classic, which describes the author’s inner transformational journey using this Jesus Prayer: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, the poor sinner.”, But to my surprise, what I found was a meditation technique that I knew from the tradition of Paramhansa Yogananda, called Hong Sau. In this very instance, you do not need to do anything to control your breath. 1 Cor 6.17). So in times of need stressing the “have mercy” part can be more comforting or more appropriate. Be clear with the class, about how long the meditation will last. 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