Meditation The Path Toward Health and Spirit

“Oooh, can you see auras?”

I believe that what John Climacus writes about as stillness, today in America we would call meditation. There is some confusion of terms also between meditation and contemplation. I’m more interested in the practice than the terminology.

The first Yoga class I took was at a time when young mothers had dropped their elementary school children off at school and then had time for themselves. So it was me in my 50s and a bunch of women from late 20s to mid 30s. They didn’t seem to mind me invading their turf. Once the subject of meditation came up and I mentioned I did. That provoked the question above. New Age had infiltrated even into Sidney, Ohio.

John devotes much space to stillness. He gives to us a list of signs, stages, and proofs of practicing stillness in the right way.

On the one hand, he says:

  • A calm mind
  • A purified disposition
  • No sense of attachment
  • An end to gluttony
  • The death of lust
  • An end to talkativeness
  • For those interested in spiritual formation, there are even more:
    • The imminence of death (also practiced by the Stoics, by the way)
      Rapture in the Lord
      A foundation for the direct experience of God
      A well of discernment

    The man who has entered on stillness for a good reason but who fails to see how it benefits him daily is either practicing it in the wrong way or is being robbed of it by self-esteem.

    That’s why you seldom hear from people who are practicing. Bragging about meditating is an oxymoron.

    And, no, I don’t see auras. You’re safe around me.

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