Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Midweek Meditation: "Lectio Divina" (Maria Lichtmann)

"For these early monks, reading became a technology of the spirit, part of the toolkit for contemplation. Reading was rhythmic; the monk would read a verse of Scripture, then 'sit' with it, pausing to reflect or pray spontaneously. He would resume reading until another word, phrase, or line would kindle the heart and imagination. The poet Rainer Maria Rilke gives a description of a person practicing the rhythm of lectio divina in a more secular context: 'He does not always remain bent over his pages; he often leans back and closes his eyes over a line he has been reading again, and its meaning spreads through his blood.'  Lectio divina is the kind of reading that frustrates the urge to get through, to get anything, but instead places the reader in slow time, where all the moves are God's. A person doing sacred reading has to resolve to waste time, a terribly countercultural, counterproductive move in this media- and Web-saturated culture." (Maria Lichtmann, The Teacher's Way: Teaching and the Contemplative Life, Paulist Press, 2005, p22)

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