Book Notes: Beginning to Pray: Knocking at the door

Beginning to PrayBeginning to Pray,
by Anthony Bloom

Paulist Press, 1970

Knocking at the door

Unless we are aware that we are outside the Kingdom of God, that we need to knock to be allowed in (Fr Anthony has talked about this at length in the first chapter), we spend a great deal of our lives imagining we are inside and behaving as if  we were.

But we are never radically outside or inside.
God already gives us so much, but we must learn there’s always more.
All we have is a gift. I am nothing and I have nothing = this is the 1st beatitude.
Yet we are in possession of everything, it’s been given to us = 2nd beatitude.

It’s the continuous gift of divine love.
But we lose it as soon as we try to keep it in our hands.
The Kingdom is being free from possession. This freedom establishes us in a relationship where everything is love.
Nothing can be stored.
We cannot go ahead Godwards, unless we have 2 empty hands and an open heart.
= spirit of fasting, abstinence, sobriety
= watchfulness over our imagination

Now, where to knock?
The Kingdom of God is within us.

Find the door of your heart,
you will discover it is the door of the Kingdom of God.”
John Chrysostom, quoted here page 46

And how to knock?
We must stand completely open, devoid of all our knowledge, imagining, image of God.
With attention and focus in our prayer.
And always going deeper, in surrender.
We must choose a prayer that makes sense to us.

The awareness of God shall be with you as a toothache.
Theophan the Recluse, quoted here page 50.

= an ache that will be a desperate longing for God.
Or like a great joy or great pain.

Any reflection on these quotes?

Thanks for stopping by and sharing your input or questions. I'll answer asap and visit your site if you have one

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s