Monday, March 2, 2009

The Holy Spirit Continues in You

"Resting in God is a term I like."
--Thich Nhat Hanh

Buddhist monk and teacher, Thich Nhat Hanh, writes in his book, Living Buddha, Living Christ, that real love never ends. He says, "In Judaism, we are encouraged to enjoy the world as long as we know that it is God himself." Jewish belief is the forbear of Christianity; its patrimony is unmistakeable, joyful, loving, creative. "The Ten Commandments... of the Judeo-Christian hertitage help us know what to do, and what not to do in order to cherish God throughout our daily life."

"All precepts, commandments are about love and understanding." Jesus gave this commandment first to the Apostles, his disciples, to 'love God with all your mind, with all your strength, and most importantly, to love your neighbor as yourself.' In the bible chapter, First Corinthians (Corinthians 1), it declares the principle message of the bible and its eastern, Jewish roots:

Love is patient, love is kind, love is not arrogant, envious or rude. Love does not rejoice in the wrong, it is not irritable or resentful. Love does not insist on its own way. Love rejoices in the truth.
These are very close to the teachings of Buddhism, Thich Nhat Hanh continues. He comments that, "Love bears all things, believes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. Love is born and reborn... To take good care of yourself and the environment is the best way to love God. This love is possible when you understand that you are not separate from other beings, or the environment. This understanding cannot be merely intellectual. It must be experiential, insight gained from deep touching and deep looking in a daily life of contemplation, prayer and meditation."
Real love never ends. It can be born and reborn within you, again and again.

When you pray with your heart, your love, the Holy (whole, unified) Spirit is within you. Nothing more is necessary. The Spirit is a force, a power within you, and in the world. Spirit comes, lighting the Way in the darkness. The force of Bodhichitta is alive. You can see things deeply, understand deeply, love deeply. Hanh writes, "if you practice this way, the Lord's Prayer comes alive in you. It brings real change: thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven... This is like the water that touches the wave, which is its own nature.

This touching removes fear, anxiety, anger, craving... give us our daily bread, and forgive our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us... lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, every evil...have mercy upon us, and protect us from anxiety..." Deeply looking, meditating on this prayer shows the light of the Spirit, the loving God, is loving the living beings that "we see and touch in our daily life.
If we can love them, we can love God."

Thus the Holy Spirit continues on in you. You are one, both the wave and the water, the raft and the shore. Your mindfulness will bring this about, sharing with others.

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