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Thoughts from Sr. Rita
Standing for Love is a Practice
Standing for Love in silence restores all that is lost and broken in ourselves. So too, we begin to realize that we are falling in love with each and every person in the world.
As we go on in this practice, we often fail. This is not an obstacle as long as we see our failure as just another opportunity to renew compassionate love for all in the midst of our wayward ways
As our fidelity to silence continues to deepen, we experience within ourselves how compassionate love uses us for its own purpose by inspiring, even impelling us to do what we can to ease the burden and calm the distress of those around us.
Silence embodies compassion that forms the essential bond between seeking Love and all forms of social justice. The more we are transformed in Love, the more we are impelled to act with compassion toward others, to bring justice for all.
Love is not really an action that you do: Rather it is what and who you are in your deepest essence.
Love is a place that already exists inside of you. It is also greater than you.
You get more love by letting it flow through you. If you love, you will become more loving.
Adapted from the work of Richard Rohr, OFM and Jim Finley
We are being called to a new level of engagement and action. Hard as it will be, we are called to take a radical dive into the deep listening that can reveal the new way forward. Let us commit to seeing the nourishment of our community in this very struggle. Only love can cast out hate, and we accept this challenge.
Sister Rita Petruziello CSJ
I share these thoughts from my 10 years experience as Executive Director of River's Edge Spirituality Center. My time there was personally transformative.
Because of the natural evolutionary process of moving forward, our world is in chaos. The systems that worked for the 20th Century are not working for the challenges of the 21st Century. This applies to all of our systems, economic, government, education, religious institutions, etc. Old ways are breaking into new ways of doing things. This is a reason why so many folks are looking for change.
We need to continue to develop our awareness of the interconnectedness of everything and everybody. Science and spirituality tell us that what happens to one happens to all. Each one of us embodies light and darkness, good and evil, ignorance and wisdom These dualisms are a part of the same reality. So again, what better thing to do than to embrace everyone with love no matter how different their beliefs and attitudes.
The way to get there is to find the deepest part of who we are as humans. The love that resides within each of us is capable of moving us forward into a new future. It is only in silence that we cultivate this awareness.
At this time in our history, we more than ever need to put the power of love that brings healing, peace, and justice into the energy fields. These fields hold memory and when we do this in silence and collectively it is very powerful. This too is a spiritual reality proven by science.
Sister Rita Petruziello, CSJ
Interesting Article: The Election: Of Hate, Grief, and a New Story
Give me a lever and a place to stand “for Love”and I will move the world. —Archimedes
Archimedes (c. 287–c. 212 BC), a Greek philosopher and mathematician, noticed that if a lever was balanced in the correct place, on the correct fulcrum, it could move proportionally much greater weight than the force applied. Archimedes imagined a fixed point, the fulcrum, in space. If the Earth rested on the short end of a lever, close to the fulcrum, and Archimedes was pulling down on the other extremely long end of the lever, then theoretically his small weight would be multiplied enough to move the world.
The fixed point is our place to stand. It is a contemplative stance: steady, centered, poised, and rooted. To gain distance from the world—we have to allow time for withdrawal from business as usual, for meditation, for going into our private room. (Matthew 6:6). However, in order for this not to become escapism, we have to remain quite close to the world at the same time, loving it, feeling its pain and its joy as our pain and our joy. So the fulcrum, that balancing point, must be in the real world.
. In order to have the capacity to “move the world,” we ironically need some distancing and detachment from the diversionary nature and delusions of mass culture and false self. Contemplation builds on the hard ground of reality—as it is—without ideology, denial, or fantasy.
And so the cycle of life begins. And you are never sure which is feeding which, or whether it is action or contemplation that comes first. They live through one another, and neither of them can exist healthily by themselves. But finally you will have both your lever (your action or delivery system) and your prayerful place to stand. From there, you can move your bit of the world, because you are being moved yourself inside a Much Larger Flow and Dance.
Paraphrased from From Richard Rohr OFM
Sister Rita Petruziello CSJ
July 15, 2017
Creation is an ongoing event, a dynamic relationship between divinity and creation, marked by an internal impulse to evolve toward greater wholeness and consciousness, While the natural world bears this inherent impulse toward unity, on the human level we have reached a level of intractable differences and find ourselves in a world of ideological polarities, conflict, violence and war. In our modern period we have fallen into patterns of competition, greed, selfishness, and individualism that are giving way to loneliness, isolation and global apathy.
We as humans are being called to a new consciousness. This is a consciousness that opposes power, control, and domination. Rather it is a consciousness of belonging, mutual respect, affirmation, participation, and creative Love by which one gives of one’s own life to foster life in others; a consciousness of shared values and shared goodness, a consciousness of belonging together and sharing a future together.
Let us Stand for Love together now and into the future!
Paraphrased from the work of Ilia Delio,
Theologian dedicated to the integration of science and religion
Sister Rita Petruziello CSJ
June 26, 2017