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.


Spirituality in a Secular Age

LAURENCE FREEMAN OSB
2009 Series B  Apr-Jun

Laurence Freeman is a Benedictine monk of the Olivetan Congregation and Director of The World Community for Christian Meditation. In these talks he addresses the spiritual anguish of the modern Christian in a landscape where institutional religion is often held in suspicion or even rejected. How do we live a meaningful life at personal depth? And how do we relate it to our faith? Fr Laurence points us to “the one thing necessary” that Jesus calls us to, as he called Martha to: to put being before doing. It is true to the way we are made, he explains, as he llustrates how meditation offers more than what the secular approach often presents – not just self-help but selftranscendence in love: a way to live and to experience truth.

What has happened in modern times is the growth of a secular mentality which presents particular opportunities and problems,challenges for our spiritual journey. How do we live a spiritual life in a secular age? Let’s think what we mean by secular. It doesn’t only mean the rejection of belief in God. In fact it looks as if most people do believe in God; they just don’t want to have a religious label put on that belief. Most people don’t say that they are not spiritual; most people say they are not religious. The secular mentality certainly implies that a certain discourse about God in public life or in education or in our institutions, that’s dropped away – we don’t acknowledge God, we don’t talk about God in polite society, business society, or anything like that. So that’s one aspect of the secular age. Perhaps though we can understand how we re-connect to the spiritual dimension of our lives in a secular age by looking at other aspects of what we mean by secular.

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The Contemplative Executive

Peter Ng
2008 Series D

Peter Ng is Chief Investment Officer at the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation. He is the WCCM National Coordinator for Singapore, and also a Trustee a Guiding Board Member. Speaking from the experience of his own quest for “meaning, depth, significance, and purpose” in life, he says: “The first challenge... is to take a step away from the busyness of the business world.” This step he found in the simple practicality of John Main’s teaching on meditation. In this practice, the executive attends to the “business of businesses”, which is to the work of God to be done in us. Talks 1 to 5 are extracts from Peter’s presentation at the 2007 John Main Seminar. Talks 6 and 7 were given to student meditators of Georgetown University, USA, in March 2006.

It is because of the tyranny of the ego that we see a business world today where the standards of ethics and integrity have been severely undermined. There is a renewed quest in the business world for the ethical mind, for a moral compass. We need leaders who by their own example can create an ethical environment, where people aspire to do good work, work of high quality that matters to society, which enhances the lives of others, and is conducted in an ethical manner. How can the ethical mind be cultivated?

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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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