“The whole of the holy life is good friends.”
The Buddha to his cousin Ananda
Friends help us to soar into our full potential. When we are feeling weighed down by the burdens of life, a friend can lift us up.
Friends can light the way.
I read this passage this morning from Words for Silence: A Year of Contemplative Meditations by Gregory Fruehwirth, OJN:
“When one person in a family, in a parish, in a workplace begins to practice being really alive and present in the present moment, not trapped in distractions in her head or lost in his heart, that person is like a burning candle carried into a dark room. People in that person’s family or workplace had been sitting in the dark, without even realizing it, thinking that darkness was as bright as things could get.”
Like that frog that sits in the frying pan, who doesn’t realize that his liver is about to be cooked as he adjusts to the increasing heat. As the darkness falls around us, it can be so gradual that we soon adjust to the gathering gloom … especially if we spend much of our time with our eyes closed to world.
“But now, because of the beaming brightness of that person’s recollected and whole presence, they are able to see and know deep within themselves just how much more there can be to their religion or their faith.”
… or love or relationships or community or whatever …
“But still, it is only one candle, and the room is still dark. When the flame is passed from person to person until there are many candles burning, then we can really see!”
Can I get an “Amen!” Miss Blogging Nancy?!
“Contemplative practice—not just when we are sitting in silent prayer, but the manner in which we live our while lives—offers a remarkable witness to the possibility of loving God with one’s whole heart and soul and mind and strength and with every breath.
“And when a circle of like-minded friends begins to gether to support each other in the life of contemplative prayer and presence, the witness of each person is strengthened and the community becomes like a circle of lamps on lamp stands, even a great fire of love.
My beloved friends, whether you feel you are a tiny flame or a roaring fire or bounce from flame to fire from one moment to the next, your light matters.