Making The All Saints Passage
29-31 October 1999

The All Saints Triduum marks the passage through death and darkness to the light. It is a mini-Easter vigil.

This is an opportunity to follow the ancient instruction to “ponder the hour of your death.”

We are a religion of this passage from death to life.

When we make this passage we begin to be able to live without flinching or self-protection, no locks, no insurance. We begin to move beyond fear.

We are dying to the little self and moving into the larger self, a place that exists beyond duty.

We need to let go of the things in ourselves that are ready to die.

Meditation is the process of dying to self. In meditation we embrace our own mortality and resurrection. There is something beyond the ego. There is something beyond our own consciousness.

Halloween is about facing the darkness.

“Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.” (Rainer Maria Rilke, “Letters to a Young Poet”)

Within us there is a lower and a higher – something that strives for truth and something which blocks that: fear, habit, duty, self-loathing, contrary passions.

“the ego wants our death”. There is something within us that wants us to die.

The false self is a defense mechanism. Over time protection makes our life feel safe; it makes us feel happy. This may have been useful when we were children.

Gradually we need to de-program that false self.

There is a view that says, “We need to isolate the bad guy and the good guy will come to the fore.” This is a harsh view that will never achieve integration. We do not get to integration by destroying one half.

Integration lies along a gentler way of loving the dragon and embracing the demon. Declare amnesty in the spiritual warfare department.

Invite and embrace the “bad guy.”

If we don’t embrace our dragons we will always be in flight. We will put our demons onto others and find we cannot love. We become brittle.

Somewhere deeper we know that there is a oneness, that we are loved by God.

When we are fearful and agitated, it is because we have not enough quiet. We need to find that free space where God can work.

Look at the places where your buttons are getting pushed.

Welcome fear, rage, whatever it is, embrace it all in prayer.

We will become quieter, more subtle and flexible and more able to regroup.

“You can’t move a plank you are standing on.” If we can’t let go of the dragons, we won’t see the princesses.

The mystical body of Christ is the thing that holds all things together. Love is the force that binds us.

We are the “pre-deceased”.

“Mercy” means exchange. It is a two-way thing, a bond that holds the loved and the beloved together.

Touch is a two-way thing – if we are being touched, we are touching back.

Merton mercy is the power that binds.

“Lord have mercy” is a prayer that the bond will be strengthened.

Merton – the ground of all things is the mercy. Our part is to bring our complete poverty. Where they meet we find “le point vierge”. This is in everyone.

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