Discussion Questions, Storytelling, Sharing
- Walt Whitman said about his first reading of Ralph Waldo Emerson: "I was simmering and he brought me to a boil." What has brought you to a boil recently?
- Describe a specific incident when you were enthusiastic about a project. What was it? How did the people around you respond to your excitement? Did anyone try to take the wind out of your sails? How did you handle the situation?
- What do you do to revive your spirits when you are feeling sluggish, bored, or apathetic?
This exercise, "God in My Breath," is a brief version of one Anthony de Mello presents in Sadhana: A Way to God. The intention is to bring God within — en theos.
Close your eyes and practice breath awareness for a while. . . . Reflect now that this air that you are breathing in is charged with the power and the presence of God . . . Notice what you feel when you become aware that you are drawing God in with each breath you take.
Now while you breathe in, fill your lungs with the divine energy . . . While you breathe out, imagine you are breathing out all your impurities . . . your fears . . . your negative feelings . . . your apathy . . . your boredom . . . Imagine your whole body becoming radiant and alive through this process of breathing in God's life-giving Spirit and breathing out all your impurities.
Stay with this awareness as long as you can without distractions.
- Do an enthusiasm examination of yourself. When do you feel filled with God? When do you feel most alive? What are you passionate about? Do you always feel free to express your enthusiasm? If not, what tends to stifle this spiritual energy?
- Write a profile of a person you would call a "living saint" who is infused with the spirit of God. How has this individual moved you? How do you feel in the company of this person? Try to come to terms with your reactions to "holy people" in this exercise.