Meditatio Talks
 
The Meditatio talks are spiritual readings to inspire and encourage the meditator to persevere in the discipline of the daily practice. They are extracted from presentations and conferences by teachers of The World Community for Christian Meditation. The talks are of short duration, usually about 8 to 12 minutes. They can be listened to before or after the daily meditation practice or at group meetings. The WCCM community in Singapore compiles these talks on audio CDs which are mailed quarterly as a gift to over 1800 meditation groups in over 50 countries.

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To read transcripts, listen to or download the audio talks, please click on the appropriate button below each title.


Aspects of the Spiritual Life

David Wood
2008 Series C

David Wood is a retired Anglican priest. Most of his life, he lived and worked amongst declining industrial communities in Northern England organising and leading prayer workshops, retreats, and vigils of prayer, always exploring silence and solitude. When he met John Main's teaching in 1988, after searching wilderness years, he knew he was 'home'.With his wife Sheila he then started and developed the Christian Meditation Community in Cumbria. "These introductions to meditations," he writes, "are like aspects of the spiritual life and mystery I want to reveal more for myself, knowing that it is the same for many people I meet. We need to bring all things into our silence and let the silence work."

Truth, we discover, is to be found in the contradictions – to say I have to become poor in order to become rich; to succeed I have to learn to fail; to win I have to suffer defeat; to overcome I need to yield, and so on. This is putting things the right way up. I have to die in order to live. I have to let go of so much which the upside-down world of competing and conflicting egos encourages me to hold on to unnecessarily. This is the threshold line of Life we have to cross constantly – everything is contradiction, paradox. And until we face the opposites in our own situations, we are missing out on what it is to be truly alive.

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The Ego - on Our Spiritual Journey II

Laurence Freeman OSB
2008 Series B

Laurence Freeman is a Benedictine monk of the Olivetan Congregation and Director of The World Community for Christian Meditation. He is author of many books and CDs. These talks offer fresh insight on the problem of the ego and the role of asceticism. The ego is a great force in today’s consumer society but, Fr Laurence says, there is a natural gravity in the human soul that draws it towards God. This is the primary human will. The way to recover this primary will is asceticism, and the single word in meditation is a way of ascesis that strikes at the root of the ego. These talks were given to the monks at Gethsemani Abbey in 1992.

If we were to say in the simplest terms what is the spiritual life, I think we couldn’t probably say better than accepting ourselves as we are. Not even transcending ourselves or perfecting ourselves, but simply accepting ourselves. That is the spiritual life. Without that self-acceptance, we cannot come to self-knowledge. Whatever part of ourselves we don’t accept, we repress. What is repressed is not available for the glorification of God. The glory of God is a man fully alive, fully self-accepting. We don’t fulfil our destiny, which is to glorify God, unless we do this hard work of accepting every bit of ourselves, even the bits that don’t seem to fit in, that don’t fit in with our religious image, our monastic image or even our Christian image. Every part of ourself has to be included in the final oblation.

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The Ego - on Our Spiritual Journey I

Laurence Freeman OSB
2008 Series A

Laurence Freeman is a Benedictine monk of the Olivetan Congregation and Director of The World Community for Christian Meditation. He is author of many books and CDs. These talks offer fresh insight on the problem of the ego and the role of asceticism. The ego is a great force in today’s consumer society but, Fr Laurence says, there is a natural gravity in the human soul that draws it towards God. This is the primary human will. The way to recover this primary will is asceticism, and the single word in meditation is a way of ascesis that strikes at the root of the ego. These talks were given to the monks at Gethsemani Abbey in 1992.

If we have found our true self, then we have found that wavelength in which we can relate to each other in a truly loving way, truly compassionate, truly in empathy, truly non-judgemental, truly tolerant, putting up with the weaknesses of body and character in each other. This is very much related to our relationships with each other, very much related to forgiveness, for example. We cannot truly forgive one another unless we are in touch with our own true identity, our own essential goodness. We cannot forgive one another, and therefore we cannot enter into relationship with one another, unless we are in touch with that true self. The process of forgiveness occupies such an important place in the Christian vision precisely for this reason – because it is in the process of forgiveness that we detach from our ego and find our true self, from which experience we find the power to love one another. Christ is the supreme example and teacher of that. It is in this pure prayer that the ego is transcended. In the transcendence of the ego, reconciliation and communion become possible.

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