As we build the Beloved Community, we pray for you every day that you might continue to bring it about in your little corner of the world.
Today's Meditation is a celebration of the life and spirit of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, one of the people who has most shaped my way of being in the world. His Divine Milieu, seeing and meeting God everywhere and His Mass on the Universe, seeing all of creation as ways of communing with God inform my spirituality. Included here below are three of his prayers.
We invite you to join us as we commit ourselves to working tirelessly to end systemic and structural racism in our society, in the church, in healthcare, in the workplace--wherever it shows up so that everyone may come to have more abundant life. May this meditation nourish our contemplative-active hearts and sustain all of us in action.
In the spirit of our philosophy of co-creating community and our awareness that the Spirit speaks through each of us, we invite you to share your meditations with us as well. We truly believe that it is God's economy of abundance: when we share our blessings, our thoughts, our feelings, we are all made richer.
We hope and pray that you find peace, healing, hope and the infusion of joy in your life!
With our love and care,
Ron and Jean
MEDITATION: Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Mystic and Scientist
Blessed Among Us
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Mystic and Scientist (1881–1955)
The work of the French Jesuit Pierre Teilhard de Chardin underlies many of the creative movements in contemporary theology and spirituality. A scientist of the first rank, he published scores of scholarly articles and took part in anthropological excavations on three continents. All the while he worked out a profound theological synthesis, integrating the theory of evolution with his own cosmic vision of Christianity.
And yet his work aroused concerns in Rome, so much so that throughout his career he was denied permission to publish any of his theological writings, to lecture publicly, or to accept any academic appointments. This treatment caused him severe frustration, yet he submitted in obedience, convinced that he served Christ best by faithfulness to his vocation.
Teilhard’s spirituality was marked by a strong apprehension of the incarnation. With a mystic’s eye, he perceived the face of the divine in all of creation: “I want to teach people how to see God everywhere, to see Him in all that is most hidden, most solid, and most ultimate in the world.”
He spent his final years in New York, where he died on Easter Sunday, April 10, 1955. After his death, the publication of his writings—previously passed from hand to hand among a select few—found a wide and devoted audience that continues to grow.
“The more the years pass, the more I begin to think that my function is probably simply that . . . of John the Baptist, that is, of one who presages what is to come. Or perhaps what I am called on to do is simply to help in the birth of a new soul in that which already is.” —Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
A PRAYER FOR COMPASSION
Oh God, I wish from now on
to be the first to become conscious
of all that the world loves, pursues, and suffers;
I want to be the first to seek,
to sympathize and to suffer;
the first to unfold and sacrifice myself,
to become more widely human
and more nobly of the earth
than of any of the world's servants.
— Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J. (1881–1955)
Prayer of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Trust in the Slow Work of God
Above all, trust in the slow work of God We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay We should like to skip the intermediate stages. We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new. And yet it is the law of all progress that it is made by passing through some stages of instabilityand that it may take a very long time. And so I think it is with you. your ideas mature gradually – let them grow, let them shape themselves, without undue haste. Don’t try to force them on, as though you could be today what time (that is to say, grace and circumstances acting on your own good will) will make of you tomorrow. Only God could say what this new spirit gradually forming within you will be. Give Our Lord the benefit of believing that his hand is leading you, and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself in suspense and incomplete. - Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J. (1881-1955)
Aging/Dying Prayer – Teilhard de Chardin, SJ
When the signs of age begin to mark my body
(and still more when they touch my mind);
when the ill that is to diminish me or carry me off
strikes from without or is born within me;
When the painful moment comes
in which I suddenly awaken
to the fact that I am ill or growing old;
and above all at that last moment
when I feel I am losing hold of myself
and am absolutely passive within the hands
of the great unknown forces that have formed me;
in all these dark moments, O God,
grant that I may understand that it is You
(provided my faith is strong enough)
who are painfully parting the fibers of my being
in order to penetrate to the very marrow
of my substance and bear me away within Yourself.