Posted in Divine Revelation, Spiritual Direction, Spiritual Formation, Spiritual Practices

Is There Any Truth in Scripture?

In a word:  YES, but not in the way many religious institutions would have us believe.  While some (many) have used the Bible to manipulate the masses and to put forth their own hidden (or sometimes not so hidden) agendas, this is not how scripture proves relevant to us today.  I should probably qualify that statement….if our desire is for separation, then using the Bible to put forth dogma, justify separative actions, or to sell the story of a God who wants you to be wealthy, then that is how one will use the Bible.  If, however, our desire is for unity and for humanity to come together in harmony with one another, then we are required to approach scripture in a different way.

While the Bible is the inspired word of God (Truth, Love, The Divine, by whatever name you call the Source and Revelation of all that is), so too is every example of the written word.  As we become increasingly aware of the wisdom traditions and sacred writings of other cultures, we discover an abundantly flowing wellspring of wisdom.  As the Western world grows increasingly disenchanted with institutional Christianity and discovers the compassionate teachings of our friends in the East or from the Native people who were here before the European invasion, the temptation is to exchange the traditions in which we were raised for these “new age ideas.”  The problem is that there is nothing “new” about New Age, neither is there something unique in Buddhism, Hinduism, Zen, Paganism, or Native traditions that we cannot find in our own traditions.

This is where the rich tradition of Christian contemplative practices proves helpful.  (Note:  there is also nothing unique to the tradition of Christian contemplative practices, expressions of all the practices we call “Christian” can be found in the Jewish faith out of which Christianity emerged, and also within the spiritual practices of the cultures in which Judaism was immersed.) With these practices, we can approach scripture through the lens of inquiry and as a tool through which we can discover and discern our own truth.  In this way, scripture acts like a mirror, reflecting the guidance, insights, learning, comfort and healing we need in the present moment.  Whether we think of God as the Divine Source of all that is, or as a reflection of our highest self, when applying contemplative practices to scripture, “God” is providing us with what we need.  It is through these contemplative practices that we come to know the God of our own understanding while at the same time coming to know ourselves.  In this way, scripture is can be our teacher, our source of guidance and direction, our healer, our counselor and our comforter.

This post is an excerpt from our Authentic Freedom Weekly Lesson.  Become a member today and enjoy this, another other offerings:

Posted in Mary Magdalene

Did Mary Magdalene Write the Scriptures Attributed to John?

An interesting and provocative question was posed to me awhile back during my guest appearance on the Healing Fountain Blogtalk Radio show with host Cindy Bentley. The question was:

“Tell me what you think about the possibility that Mary Magdalene was the actual author of the Gospel attributed to John (and thereby the other writings attributed to John)?”

I love this question because it is quite possible that the writings that made it into canonical scripture were in fact written by Mary Magdalene, or at the very least were penned by one of the members of her community. Of course there is no possible way of researching, let alone proving, this theory. And yet, there is circumstantial evidence to support its possibility:

The gospel attributed to John:

Is unique among the gospels in the way it presents the Jesus story, offering stories and teachings that are not present within any of the other canonical scriptures. Rather than a semi-historical narration of the life and teachings of Jesus, John represents a reflective history, one clearly based in a deeply intimate and mystical experience of Jesus and the Christ.

John is the sole gospel to include the stories of: The Wedding Feast at Cana, the Samaritan Woman at the Well, the Last Supper Discourses, Jesus’ teachings on Oneness, The Resurrection of Lazarus, Mary Anointing Jesus, all of which figure prominently in the archetypal images related to Mary Magdalene “the Bride.”

The Book of Revelation, also attributed to John, is a genre unto itself, presenting an allegorical story of humanity’s journey toward liberation and the key to that inner liberation. Again, Mary Magdalene, (as The Whore of Babylon, The Woman with the crown of 12 stars with the moon under her feet and clothed in the sun, The Bride) plays a symbolic and starring role.

The Letters attributed to John are perhaps the most beautiful exhortations on the profound love of God and the relationship we are invited into the Love of God with Christ as our guide.

Finally, it is John who places Mary Magdalene is the singular, starring role of not only facilitating but also being witness to Jesus’ resurrection, and then being commissioned and ordained by Jesus to carry the good news of the resurrection to the other disciples, and to continue his ministry of love in his stead.

If Mary Magdalene did not pen the writings attributed to John, it is highly likely that their author was very close to Mary and to the ministry she continued after Jesus’ death, for according to the non-canonical Gospel of Mary, she was the one who understood the fullness of Jesus’ teachings, especially his teachings on Oneness.

Don’t take my word for it, however. I invite you to read the writings attributed to John and decide for yourself.

Posted in Inspiration, Jesus, Spiritual Formation

When Approaching Scripture – Perspective is Everything

…when it comes to scripture; there will always be disagreement – especially if we are looking for objective truth. But again, this was not Jesus’ goal; neither should it be our own. For the purpose of our spiritual growth and development, all we can look for is how scripture is reflecting or revealing our own truth.  Case in point, the scripture passage below can be taken any number of ways, depending on our point of view, or on the agenda of one who is interpreting this passage for us.  Let’s start with a single line:

“Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him.”

For some, this passage points to exclusivity. God will ONLY love those who keep Jesus’ word.  For others this passage speaks of reward and punishment.  IF we keep Jesus’ word (what word exactly are we to keep?), God will love us, implying that if we do not keep Jesus’ word, God will no longer love us.  This one tiny line from John’s gospel has been used for two millennia to establish so-called Christian privilege and to justify persecution, condemnation and even the wholesale slaughter of “non-believers.”  Is this really what Jesus meant in these words?  If we believe that Jesus’ overriding message was of Love and of a Divine parent who loves without condition, then no, Jesus could not have meant these words to privilege anyone or to deny anyone of the unconditional and unmerited love of God.  But human beings, through their limited perspective chose otherwise.

The above is an excerpt from my (dot) Love weekly message.  Full content reserved for Plus, Premium and Premium-Plus Members. Click here to learn more on how you can become a member and enjoy the tools that have helped me in my own journey.  Find an example of what is available in the full content HERE.

Posted in Mary Magdalene

The Magdalene Priesthood Training- Returning to Ourselves

For the past several years I have welcome over 100 women and men into the Order of the Magdalene Priesthood Training.  Below are the words of two recent graduates of the full 1 year program.  Thank you Maria and Rebecca for your beautiful words and for the work of love you are performing in our world!

In looking back over the time it has taken me to complete this course, I can’t believe where I am now.
The gifts (magic ) I have to offer from my Spirit.
The Freedom of authenticity that is flowing from me.
The integration and depth of the Spirit that comes forth.

The fearlessness and contentment of living in this new found Freedom.

I have learned through this program to come back and return…return to myself.
Everytime I struggled with something occurring in my life,
I would do a lesson in the program and reflect…go inward.

Not seek outward for help, like the old me would do.
But connect to the training …to the Magdalene…to me!

It was a blessing in so many ways.
The Magdalene Priestess Training ultimately allowed me to stand unto myself.
To find dominion in me.
Thank you Lauri…so very much.

Maria G. USA

 

What is so amazing to me is in this journey and through each course it has helped to heal my relationship with religion.  In the sense that I don’t need to follow any one direction of spirituality.  It has given me a completely different outlook on scripture and the characters in scripture but also on those who have translated and handed down these teachings.  To stop and consider what personal agendas may have been at stake in recording and passing them on based on the author at the time.  It has taught me to lead through my heart.  How to recognize myself in others both my poor and positive traits and how those are reflecting in those around me. I have to admit that my relationship to Christ has very much been strengthened during this time, and in doing that my sacred feminine feels even more powerful.  I seem to have a very strong relationship to Mother Mary as well, and it may be due to the fact of being in the throws of motherhood now.  I definitely do not feel like the same person from almost 2 years ago.  Now I feel strong in my faith combined with my witchy ways.  You don’t have to choose one or the other.  It’s empowering and wonderful!

Rebecca USA

 

Posted in church, Raised Catholic, the bible, Truth

Healing Our Religious Wounds – new online course

Online course

Do at your own pace

23 modules

Only $49.99!

(content heavy and fiscally light)

Click on this image to register.

While religion has provided a great service to humanity, it has also done great harm. If you are one who has felt harmed, rejected, condemned, judged, ridiculed, stifled, silenced, by religion, you are not alone. In fact, the second largest “religious” denomination in the United States is made up of 42.7 million non-practicing Catholics – those who have left the Church because they no longer felt welcome or at home.  Perhaps like me, you are one of those.  Whatever it is that brings you to this class, “Healing Our Religious Wounds,” know that here you are welcome!  Through this course you will find acceptance, unconditional love and support for healing the wounds that you experienced at the hands of religious institutions or from those associated with that religion (even when those may have been your own parents or loved ones).

The structure of this class will be four-fold:

  1. To name and claim the harm that we have experienced through religion and to find unconditional support for claiming these wounds.
  2. To grieve the losses that we have experienced as a result of these wounds: loss of community, loss of familiar rituals, loss of perceived belonging, loss of God*, loss of self.
  3. To provide a space upon which you can heal religious wounds by confronting some of the core “beliefs” that are often the platform upon which this wounding has taken place.
  4. In doing so, providing space in which you can build a belief system of your own, perhaps discovering that in doing so, you don’t have to throw the baby out with the bathwater (which many, sadly have).

The format of this course will be part storytelling, part recorded lecture, part written content, and part personal reflection and meditation.  You are invited to share what you are comfortable sharing throughout the course and you are free to refrain from sharing if this is how you are called.

Topics Covered:

  • Telling our story
  • Grief
  • Guilt
  • Images of God
  • Re-examining “The Trinity”
  • The question of salvation
  • Jesus – Redeemer or Revealer?
  • Scripture
  • Outside perceived authority vs inner truth
  • Prayer – speaking to vs. listening to God
  • Religion vs. Spirituality
  • Naming and claiming your own truth

*A note about “God.” Throughout this course you will see the use of the word “God.”  I will also interchange this with “The Divine.”  Please know that in the use of these terms, I impose no specific belief or understanding of what that means….but that it has nothing to do with the traditional “Old Man in the Sky” god and everything to do with the “God of your understanding.”  If you have a hard time with the word “God,” please feel free to replace it with “Love” or “Peace” or any word that describes your current understanding of our Origin and our Source.

Please also note that I will be using Judeo-Christian scripture throughout this course. I do so because it is the primary text which has been used as a weapon for harm.  In my own healing journey, I have discovered the beauty of scripture when examined through the light of love.  Scripture was never meant to cause harm, but to be a vehicle through which we can find ourselves, and in finding ourselves, finding our own understanding of “God.” My hope in using scripture, along with the proper tools, is that you will find this also to be true.

What you will need:

  • Yourself
  • A computer with internet access
  • A notebook or journal
  • A music source (your computer will suffice)
  • A box of crayons (Crayola 64 count is my favorite)
  • Time

As an additional source of support, I have created a “Secret” Facebook group (meaning only members can post or have access to the page) for course participants. Here you are welcome to share your own journeys and to connect with others healing through this process.  This is purely optional, but please use this resource if you feel so called.

 REGISTER HERE. 

From the Course’s Welcome and Introduction:

Since the beginning of time, human beings have created belief systems, rituals and communal practices to support and give expression to their search for meaning. For many primitive cultures, religion became a means of trying to survive in an otherwise unfriendly world. Beyond mere survival, as sentient beings we are driven by an inner longing to know who we are, to understand the workings of the universe and to somehow participate in the universe’s ongoing act of creation.  Religions were created in an effort to fulfill this longing.

Historically, the development of religious systems has proven helpful in gathering people around a common set of beliefs and cultural practices, providing a system of education and support through the inherent rites of passage in the human journey (birth, coming into adulthood, coupling, aging, death), and supporting humanity in developing necessary codes of conduct and systems for addressing breaches in that conduct. At their best, religious institutions bring humans together, support them in their psycho-spiritual development and equip them for living out the fullness of their human potential while being of service to the betterment of the world.

Many religious institutions are not, however, functioning “at their best.” Instead, many have risen up out of systems of fear, power and control, or as an adversarial response to other systems of power.  As a result, many religious institutions are functioning not as a system of support and empowerment, but instead are seeking control.  In many cases, fear and intimidation are the vehicles of control as those in power seek to rule over those who are not.

As a result of this disparity of power, many thousands of human beings have been injured – told they are unworthy of the love of their God, made to feel less than because of the person God made them to be, or flat out rejected because of their gender, sexual orientation, or life choices. In some cultures, people are even being killed because they disagree with the ruling religious power.  And what about all of those who have been sexually abused by those in religious power and those who are still being abused?

 REGISTER HERE

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Authentic Freedom Academy, Christ Consciousness, church, divine mother, Jesus, New World, Oneness with God, Raised Catholic, the bible

Revealing the “New” in What Has Formerly Been Called “Church”

It is no longer about building the new world. It is about BEING the new world.

– Lauri Ann Lumby

For those of us who came here to be leaders in bringing forth the new world – in helping others to see the new world that is already here in our midst, we each have our own unique task , our own unique portion of “the new” we are here to help others see hidden within “the old.”

Some are called to be leaders of revealing the new world in the fields of education, others in medicine, others in banking and finance, others in governance, others in what was formerly called “the military,” and others in marketing, commerce, industry, manufacturing, agriculture, etc.

The specific field in which I am called to reveal the “new” is in what has formerly been called “church.”

stmarysinterior

In the old world, “church” became the intermediary between the people and their “god” and the outside perceived authority charged with telling the people what to do. “Church” ruled through fear and manipulated with threats of eternal punishment and damnation.

This was never what God intended. Neither was this what Jesus worked for.  Even Paul would have cringed if he’d seen what would become of his “Body of Christ.”

While this model of church continues to serve the needs of those who choose to remain in the old world – the world ruled by fear; for those choosing to live in a world of and for the purpose of Love, a different experience of what has formerly been called “church” seeks to be made known.

For those who in the old world were raised in one of the many Christian traditions, or who resonate with the person of Jesus, the “new” that is being revealed, and that I am called to help others see, starts with him.

jesus

What did Jesus do?

While we cannot recognize as authoritative or historically accurate, when we look past 2000 years of orthodox interpretation and through centuries of redaction and political maneuvering, and allow the Divine to speak to us directly, many truths can be gleaned:

  • Jesus prayed. And he prayed often, and he taught his disciples how to pray.
  • It was through prayer that Jesus experienced a deeply intimate, loving and even parental relationship with God (which he called “Abwoon”).
  • It was also through prayer that Jesus eventually came to realize his Oneness with God.
  • Through prayer, Jesus came to know God as Love and in this Oneness, came to know himself as Love.
  • It was in this Love that Jesus came to experience “heaven on earth” or as Jesus explained it: “the kingdom of God within.”
  • THIS is the kingdom Jesus proclaimed – LOVE.
  • Jesus lived and taught two commandments: Love God. Love Neighbor. And Jesus considered EVERYONE to be his neighbor, especially those the outside perceived authority called “sinners” or “unclean.”

In the words of Isaiah, Jesus:

Brought glad tidings to the lowly,

Proclaimed liberty to captives,

Gave sight to the blind,

Freed the imprisoned and oppressed,

Healed the brokenhearted,

Comforted those who mourned

And proclaimed a year acceptable to the Lord.

IS 61: 1-2

Jesus invited “those who had ears to hear” to move beyond the fears created by the outside perceived authority that served to separate them from “God” to the love that had been there all along – the love through which they were empowered to remember their Oneness with God (each other and all of creation) and that in this Oneness, they would know peace.

  • THIS is how Jesus healed the sick and set captives free.
  • THIS is what Jesus taught and then empowered his disciples to do.
  • THIS is what we too are called to do.
  • THIS is what I am called to reveal as the “new” model of what we formerly called “church”

As Jesus himself taught that we are all ONE and that there is indeed no separation; in the new world this proves to be true:

Here we are no longer

Jew or Greek

Slave or Free

Male or Female

For we are all ONE.

Gal 3: 28

Here, the truth within all traditions is sought and love becomes the measure of that truth.

As I am called to reveal “the new” in what has formerly been called “church,” the Catholic faith in which I was raised in my starting point.

maryqueenrosary

The Church:

  • That taught me about Jesus.
  • Who called me to do what Jesus did.
  • That taught me the value of ritual and the transformative power of contemplative prayer.
  • Where I learned that scripture is indeed the Word of God when we allow God to speak to us through and beyond the imperfection of human words.
  • Who gave me the angels, saints, mystics and all souls as my companions and guides.
  • Who gave me a God who is both Mother and Father and a God who as Spirit is beyond gender, name or form and who is both outside and within.
  • And the “Church” that taught me that we are here to know ourselves as the Temple of God and that as the Temple of God we have each been uniquely gifted and that it is through these gifts that we find fulfillment in our lives as we serve ourselves and others through the use of these gifts.

This is the starting point, but certainly not the end. For if we are all truly One, then it is our job to seek this Oneness – especially where we have most often fought for the sake of our perceived separation – in that which has formerly been called faith, religion or belief.

This is the “new” that I am called to reveal as we move more and more into the new world of Love – a “new” way of being what we formerly called “church.” And in this, we will learn that the “new” isn’t new after all, for it has always been here, right in our very midst, when we have had the eyes to see and the ears to hear.

heartinhands

If this this is the kind of “new” experience of what has formerly been called “church” that calls to you, please join us for our weekly gathering: “Being the New World”

Mondays 6:30 – 8:30 pm

Tuesdays 9:00 – 11:00 am

Authentic Freedom Academy

1103 School Ave.

Oshkosh, WI

Suggested Donation $10 – $20

If you are not in the Fox Valley and are interested in participating in these gatherings, please begin by subscribing to our weekly Empowerment Newsletter.

If you are interested in recorded sessions of our weekly gathering and in becoming part of our online community, please email Lauri at lauri@authenticfreedom.love.  If there is enough of an interest, these will be made available for a small monthly subscription fee. 

 

Posted in Authentic Freedom, Freedom, Inspiration, Lessons, teachers, women

Freeing the Feminine Voice

Today’s blog is a guest-post from Kathy Walczyk from Spiritual Middle Ground, about book burnings and freeing the feminine voice.  Throughout history it has been men who have spoken for women, and Kathy and I had a great rant over the way two women (in particular) were spoken for by men who (in my opinion) may have missed the point.  Kathy poses the question, “Isn’t it time we let the women speak for themselves?”

bookburning

Hi, my name is Kathy Walczyk. In September I completed the Authentic Freedom facilitator’s course with Lauri. During our time together we sometimes talked about saints of old. Hildegard of Bingen and Rabi’a Al-‘Adawiyya (of Basra) were two spiritual leaders we discussed. On the evening following our last class together I had an impromptu ceremonial book burning.

If we go back in history, hundreds of years ago, we find a limited number of people who could read or write. The majority of them were men. The stories of historic women mystics and saints are often written from a male perspective, penned by a man or have been translated through the years by men. It was often men scribes, theologians, historians and storytellers who have interpreted the lives, thoughts and feelings of these women prophets. That is just the way it was. And if it weren’t for these gutsy male writers going against societal norms, many of the stories would have been lost. Thank you men! Still, I long to hear the voices of women and the interpretation of these matriarchs from a woman’s perspective!

In my late thirties, about 15 years ago, I picked up a bible and began reading. I began with the Hebrew Scriptures and then skipped around making my way through it all. It was the first time I really let the words sink in. And when they did, I was shocked and disturbed by many of the stories. But it was more than just the stories themselves; something else was disturbing. What was it? It wasn’t until one day when I found myself sobbing uncontrollably after reading Judges 19: 22-28 did I realize what was missing. The scripture stories lacked a view from the hearts of the women. Story after story, told from the perspective of men left me longing to hear the story from the woman’s mouth. It was during that time I wrote the following on the inside cover of my bible:

If women had written the bible, would they have written a book of: pain ~ suffering ~ sorrow? Would it have been of the small wonders and beauties they saw around them? Would it have been of birth and creativity? Would it have been about resentment…. resentment of how they were treated? How would they have written about the wars and suffering around them? How would they have written about God? In love? Anger? Pleading? They must have had so much to say. I long to hear their words ~ thoughts ~ prayers. Do I carry their voices with me in my heart? Do I let those voices and mine be heard?

The poems, words and wisdom of Rabi’a, Hildegard and other women have found their way through history and into our hands today. Beyond that, I believe that these women live on in the divine spirit that is within us and surrounds us all.

In the quiet of the evening and after my husband went to bed, I tossed the two books into the fire ~one Lauri’s and one mine. As I watched the books burn I could feel a gentle release. It was a sense of freedom permeating the atmosphere. In my arrogance I felt maybe I was helping to free Rabi’a and Hildegard. I have a sneaking suspicion that these women, already free, were helping to free me.

KathyWalczykKathy Walczyk in her own words: My specialty is challenging you to see your beauty and potential. I facilitate this discovery by supporting your spiritual growth through one-on-one mentoring and group classes. The tools I utilize include Authentic Freedom and creative expression, including photography.  I am also an advocate for spiritual responses to trauma – specifically clergy sexual abuse.  My undergraduate is in Art and Photography and I hold a Master’s Degree in Theological Studies and Pastoral Ministry.  I have completed extensive study in the areas of spirituality, sexuality, trauma, and healing.  I live and work in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  You can reach me at wals4@aol.com or (920) 609-2657. My website is www.spiritualmiddleground.com

 

 

 

 

Posted in Agape Project, Authentic Freedom, Discernment, Oneness with God, Spiritual Practices, Surrender, Virtual Church

Humility and Spiritual Obedience

Please find below meditation supplement for the Authentic Freedom Virtual Church for this coming Sunday, September 14, 2014.  In this week’s issue, we explore the topics of humility and spiritual obedience.  God alone knows that path that is in our highest good.  Are we willing to do the hard work of surrendering our own will to that which is promised to be in our highest good?

 

Scripture Reading:

Brothers and sisters: Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Phil 2: 6-11

 

Additional Readings:

Nm 21: 4b-9

Ps 78: 1-2, 34-38

Jn 3: 13-17

 

Humility and Obedience

In the spiritual world, humility and obedience go hand-in-hand. In the Christian tradition, Jesus provides the model for pure humility and true obedience that we are called to follow. Jesus surrendered his own will to Divine guidance, which meant following the course of his truth, even when it meant likely death. (It is not that God sent Jesus to his death, or that God desired that Jesus die for his truth. Instead, Jesus lived the truth that God revealed to him, which threatened the political and religious institutions of his time.) Even when faced with suffering and sure death, Jesus did not give into the temptations of his ego, instead, he turned to God in prayer, asked for guidance, pleaded for support, and then continued along his path. This is the process we are invited to follow as Christians – to turn to God for guidance, surrendering our own will, transcending the temptations of the ego, and follow God’s guidance, trusting it will lead us along the path of our highest good.

How are you taking time to listen and receive Divine guidance?

How are you following that guidance?

 chakraart

Spiritual Practices – Surrendering our Will to God

What we think we want or need is not always in our highest good. Only God knows our highest good. Embarking on the path of humility and obedience, we first need to understand this truth. One way to facilitate this knowing is through a mantra practice. Mantra is the practice of repeating the same word or phrase over and over (aloud or silently). In mantra practice, two things happen. 1) We are drawn into a relaxed and meditative state. 2) The intention of the words becomes embedded in our consciousness and beliefs. You are invited to engage in your own mantra practice, with one of the three following quotes from scripture:

 

Let it be done to me according to your word.

 

Thy will be done.

 

Into your hands I commend my spirit.

 

During your chosen prayer period, repeat your chosen phrase over and over in your mind, allowing it to draw you into a meditative and relaxed state. Return to this mantra frequently throughout the week as you move about your daily activities.

In a notebook or journal, record any thoughts, feelings, experiences while participating in this practice.

 

Authentic Freedom

In Authentic Freedom, we acknowledge the crown chakra as our intimate connection with God. It is through the crown that we are able to surrender our own will to that of God’s. It is here that we cultivate humility and overcome the temptations of the ego. It is also through the crown chakra that we know our Oneness with God – not equal, but One as Paul describes in this week’s scripture. In remembering this Oneness with God, we feel content, peaceful, joyful, loving and fulfilled. When we have experiences of peace, joy and love, we are remembering our Oneness with God spontaneously.

 

Where are you remembering your Oneness with God?

 

Posted in Spiritual Practices

Sacred Sound – a book review

Twenty-some years ago, I embraced a daily spiritual practice.  Having an active and creative brain, I often found sitting in silence to be difficult, as such, I found myself gravitating toward practices, from the Christian tradition in which I was raised, which first engaged my mind while leading me to peace.  Lectio-Divina and Imagination/contemplation became the foundations of my daily meditation.  That was until I discovered Kirtan.  Kirtan is a chanting practice that comes out of the Bhakti branch of yoga.  Bhakti is also known as the yoga of devotion.  In the practice of Kirtan, one uses mantra and chant to facilitate inner peace and relaxation.  While I have retained the sacred reading of scripture as part of my daily practice, I have found nothing more effective than chant to bring me into the place where I am remembering my Oneness with God and experiencing the depths of Divine love.

sacredsound

In Sacred Sound – discovering the myth and meaning of mantra and kirtan, by Alanna Kaivalya, I have found a fabulous supplement to my kirtan practice.  In this book, Alanna fleshes out the transliterations, translations and spiritual meanings of many of the most honored sacred mantras.  Alanna then provides the Hindu and Buddhist myths that provide the sacred stories out of which the power of these mantras first emerged.  If you have found yourself drawn to chant or have already incorporated mantra into your daily spiritual practice, you will find Sacred Sound to be a great supplement to your practice and a fantastic resource for your spiritual library.

Buy it HERE.