The Scripture ~ [From the sermon on the mount] Jesus said, “You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’ I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves. Matthew 5: 43-44 The Message
The Spiritual Focus ~ “Self-surrender is the inner environment in which worship flourishes. Worship of God requires that we give ourselves completely—that we willingly sacrifice our selfishness.” Sri Guruji Reverend Jaganath Carrera, founder and spiritual head of Yoga Life Society
The Breath Prayer ~ Inhale ~ I surrender, Exhale ~ I am peace
The Devotion ~ This past Monday was a day set aside to honor the life, ministry and social justice leadership of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His writing and preaching were prolific. As a minister of Christ, his call to selfless surrender and his commitment to building a peaceful community led to his receiving the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. Dr. King’s spiritual practices grounded him and reflected the Rules used by the monastic order of the Benedictines. The Rules are:meditate daily on the life and teachings of Jesus, live in the manner of love, pray daily to be used by God, sacrifice personal wishes, perform regular service for others, stay in good bodily and spiritual health, pray for the oppressor.
Kriya yoga is a kind of yoga that strengthens and nurtures our relationship with God. Kriya yoga, as described in the yoga sutras, reminds us that the yoga path of spiritual growth is not only about individual practice but is also grounded in and supported by how we live our life in the world. One of the great intersections of yoga philosophy and Christian theology is that our personal growth and our relationship with God are for the sake of our life together. What we learn about ourselves in relationship with God on our mats serves to inform how we live in community.