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Monday, 28 January 2013

Part Four, the stuff of martyrs and G-L

At this stage, many people fall away and I believe this is the place where heretics are born.

Heretics have much knowledge and experience of the spiritual life, but fail at the waiting stage for many reasons.

Here are some reasons people abandon this place of grace:

Pride: thinking one has "arrived".

Impatience: not willing to suffer

Discouragement: not understanding the process

Interference: trying or striving too hard to accomplish what only the Holy Spirit can do

Falling out of orthodoxy: a huge problem in today's world

The virtues at this stage must include simplicity of life and obedience to grace..............

Here is Garrigou-Lagrange at this point:

 ....natural activity exercising itself counter to the gifts of the Holy Ghost, through self-seeking opposes an obstacle to their most delicate inspirations. In prayer, we should not seek to feel the gift of God, but should receive it with docility and disinterestedness in the obscurity of faith. Spiritual joy will be added later on to the act of contemplation and love of God; but it is not joy that should be sought, it is God Himself, who is greatly superior to His gifts.

If the soul that has reached this period of transition is faithful to what has been said, then will be realized what St. John of the Cross affirms: "By not hindering the operation of infused contemplation, to which God is now admitting it, the soul is refreshed in peaceful abundance, and set on fire with the spirit of love, which this con­templation, dim and secret, induces and establishes within it." (6)

As the mystical doctor says: "The soul should content itself simply with directing its attention lovingly and calmly toward God," with the general knowledge of His infinite goodness, as when after months of absence, a loving son again meets his good mother who has been expecting him. He does not analyze his sentiments and his mother's as a psychologist would; he is content with an affectionate, tranquil, and profound gaze which in its simplicity is far more penetrating than all psychological analyses...

A good priest said to me--keep your eyes on Christ and not yourself or others. Keep focussed on Christ.