The Scripture ~ “After all the people were baptized, Jesus was baptized. As he was praying, the sky opened up and the Holy Spirit, like a dove descending, came down on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “You are my Son, chosen and marked by my love, pride of my life.” Luke 3: 21-22 The Message
The Spiritual Focus ~ “The real spiritual awakening is when something emerges from within you is deeper than who you thought you were. So, the person is still there, but one could almost say that something more powerful shines through the person.” Eckhart Tolle
The Breath Prayer ~ Inhale ~ I Am loved, Exhale ~ We are loved
The Devotion ~ Baptism is one of the most spiritual experiences the church has to offer. It is understood as a sacrament in the church because baptism includes the element of water, a command of “Go!”, and a promise—the promise of Presence and love. Because in a later biblical passage Jesus sends his disciples into the world to baptize in his name, some people have come to understand the gift of baptism as law; a law that says you must be baptized to experience God’s love and Presence. However, that is a limited interpretation of the gift of baptism.
Baptism is a spiritual awakening. In the text from Luke we see that Jesus is among the crowd. This is a community experience and he is baptized WITH them. As he prayed, the Spirit came down on him and embodied him. Then God spoke words of love and pride for Jesus, who understood the gift of baptism both personally and communally. Spiritual awakening is like that. It is when we realize something deeper about ourselves that shines through us for the community around us to see. That is the true gift of our baptism: to realize we have the embodied Spirit in us to guide our relationship with God, a personal as well as a communal experience.
Yoga philosophy views the physical poses of yoga, or asana, as the beginning of, or what leads to a spiritual awakening. The physical practice calms and settles the body so that we may sit in meditation and receive the experience of the Spirit. In the quiet experience of our breath and in meditation, we hear the internally audible voice of God: YOU are mine, I love YOU! This is a spiritual awakening so powerful that it cannot be contained and becomes the light that shines through us into the world for all to see.