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Showing posts from July, 2018

How To Meditate

There is nothing simpler than meditation, but that doesn't mean that it's easy. Also, it is a bit fruitless discussing meditation and learning about it in an academic sort of way. In order to really know anything about it you have to do it. More than that, you have to do it regularly and often and in a disciplined fashion and for a reasonable length of time before you can understand much about it, because meditation is about will and consciousness. Of course people dabble with it, which is perfectly OK and in truth, almost all meditators start as dabblers, but as part of the benefit of meditation lies in the discipline of it, dabbling won't get you very far in the long run. If you are serious, you will need someone to help and encourage you. A meditation group is a good idea, and the World Community of Christian Meditators has groups in many areas of the world, maybe even yours. You can get a fair way with a meditation practice by using a good book. An excellent prime


It's the last day and the clouds have cleared, at least for a while. The sky warns the shepherds, so I stop on the way to breakfast to take a picture.  Just what the world needs, right? Another photo of a sunrise? See it now, while you can. Don't bother trying to capture it: even the attempt sort of misses the point. But here's the picture - I've missed the point. Again.  But wait! There's more! The netball court catches the sky's colours and flicks them on. Right back at you, babe. My God. How beautiful.  Who laid out these cracks? Who was the genius who overlaid the vertical lines of the reflected lamp posts? Mondrian? Picasso? This is all going to last about three minutes and then it will be replaced by another creation entirely. It will be less gaudily obvious, and I for one will have more trouble seeing it, but it will be no less beautiful. The fog lifts from the mountain. Some guys are in a shed doing something with an arc welder. The mount

Caminho Portugues

The Camino is an addiction. Last time we were in Spain we met a bloke who'd walked it 32 times, but he was Spanish and didn't have to pay airfares. We've walked it twice, or three times, depending on how you count, but the call of the Path of Miracles won't quite go away. Of the dozen or so main routes, I've walked all of the C. Frances and C. Primitivo, and part of the C. Norte. I'd like to have a crack at the longest and hardest route of all, La Via De La Plata, but Clemency doesn't like the sound of the long hot slog through the dry heart of Spain. She would like to do a leisurely repeat of the Frances, but we are both a bit wary of how popular it has become. So, we're thinking that the Portuguese Camino might be a good option and April might be a good time. Most people who walk the Portuguese route start at Porto, about 200 km from Santiago,  There are several possible routes, including a couple beginning on the South Coast but we are looking at

Words, words, words

Time goes on and I have less and less to say. Or, to be more accurate, I find it harder and harder to explain myself. Old age creeping on, I guess. So here I am doing what I love most, which is teaching small groups. I'm in Taranaki taking part in a taught, silent retreat on contemplative prayer. 20 or so people have battled their way here through the rain, and several times a day I'm required to say something they might find intelligible. So I have to think about what it is that needs explaining, and how I might go about explaining it. The complicated stuff which fills my head in the wee small hours, lying in the dark of my bedroom gets condensed and ordered and wrapped into language which is understandable. Or at least, I understand it, and that's personally helpful. 'If you want to learn something teach it to someone else.' Yep. Works for me. Thunderstorms rattled around the mountain all last night. All day long the winds were brisk and the rain cold. My b