The Religion Network
Pray the Day.
At the top of the Home Page:
--Luke 10: Mary and Martha
--Cloud of Unknowing: analysis of Martha
Midway down the page:
--Atisha: The greatest action...
--The Religion Network Gift Shop
--The National Council of Churches website
For Prayer Warriors who scroll down:
--Jean Pierre de Caussade
--Paramahansa Yogananda: Pendulum of action
And the Last Word: Mahatma Gandhi
WELCOME! I'm Lisa Bowman.
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TODAY'S THEME: True, holy activity
There is a website posted by the National Council of Churches which you may want to
check out. It is devoted to prayers for world peace: www.seasonofprayer.org
On the site, you may leave thoughts and prayers for peace. It's an opportunity to come
together with world and religious leaders toward a common goal
If you choose to leave a prayer on their site, please return to The Religion Network and
add the same prayer to our own Speakpage. Let's put as many prayers for peace out
there as we can. Many thanks to subscriber John King for alerting me to this site.
Photo: Chuck Bowman
Now as they went on their way, he entered a village;
and a woman named Martha received him into her
house. And she had a sister named Mary, who sat at
the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha
was distracted with much serving; and she went to him
and said, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left
me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me." But the
Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are anxious
and troubled about many things; one thing is needful.
Mary has chosen the good portion, which shall not be
taken away from her."
The Holy Bible
Revised Standard Version
...Notice that Martha addressed her complaint to our blessed Lord rather than to her sister.
She asked him to encourage Mary to help her in the kitchen. Jesus, understanding Mary's
deep immersion in contemplation, answered on her behalf. Rather than distract Mary, he
spoke to Martha with gentle courtesy, defending the one fervently occupied with spiritual
contemplation of God. "Martha, Martha." Speaking her name twice emphasizes the
importance of response. He assured Martha that her busy work had value and importance,
but that her sister engaged in a better enterprise. She was doing the one essential thing,
the work of love and praising God alone. Activity and prayer mingle imperfectly, but Mary
had discovered the perfect movement of love toward God. Similar in nature to heavenly
bliss, divine contemplation already participates in eternity.
--From 'The Cloud of Unknowing,' written by an unknown 14th century English monk.
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The greatest precept is continual awareness.
The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
The greatest action is not conforming with the world's ways.
The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
The greatest patience is humility.
The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
The greatest meditation is a mind that lets go.
The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances.
--Atisha (982-1054 AD)
A Buddhist teacher who reintroduced Buddhism to Tibet after it
had nearly been destroyed by King Langdharma.
...Thus those experienced in the skill and practice
of sanctity, with understanding and method in addition
to grace, unconsciously form the habit which becomes
second nature, of acting on intuition and faith in all
things... All they have to do is to act as though by
chance, trusting only to the power of grace which
can never be wrong...Without rules, nothing more
orderly; without preparation, nothing better planned;
without thought, nothing more profound; without skill,
nothing more accomplished; without effort, nothing
more effective; and without precaution, nothing better
adjusted to whatever may happen.
--Jean Pierre de Caussade (1675-1751)
From 'The Sacrament of the Present Moment'
The peaceful individual remains calm until he wants to work, then he swings into action; and as soon as
he is through, he swings back into the center of calmness. You must always be calm, like the pendulum
that is still, but ready to swing into action whenever necessary.
--Paramahansa Yogananda (1893-1952)
From Self Realization Fellowship lessons
And now, the Last Word:
THERE'S NOTHING MORE DOWN HERE...promise.
But there may be one of these days, so keep
checking back...I have an idea.
Prayer is not an old woman's idle amusement.
Properly understood and applied it is the most potent form of action.
--Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)
An English-educated lawyer, he is considered a major political and spiritual leader of India.
Photo by Stephen Bowman