Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sit, Stand, but Pray

Fr. Walter Ciszek
"Posture, like verbal formulas, is not essential to prayer. Perseverance is. Kneeling is not necessarily more conducive to prayer than sitting; nor is standing necessarily better than lying down. Yet the mortal man is a peculiar thing made up of body and soul; so our efforts to control the mind can often be connected with an effort at bodily control. Relax the body, and the mind goes running off to recreation. We are creatures of habit, and we can sometimes help ourselves achieve a sort of self-control that leads more readily to recollection by taking up a posture we traditionally associate with prayer."
He Leadeth Me

(Once, years ago, I was sitting all alone in church, in silent prayer. Then I heard the priest come in, and I straightened my back and closed my eyes and my hands, reverently. The 'teaching voice' in my mind asked: "Who exactly are you praying to?" I got it.)

2 comments:

  1. As often is the case, I like your comment as well as the quotation. Anyway it certainly augments the quote well. I find that when I kneel, which is uncomfortable for me, I am doing so for my fellow parishioners so they won't think badly of me, as well as for God so God won't think badly of me. But my fellow parishioners don't know me and God knows me better than I know myself already. Impressing the former doesn't matter and impressing the latter ... too late for that. Peter

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  2. Great comment - thanks Peter. Just this morning I said those very words: "God knows me better than I know myself...", so we can relax about making any impression at all!

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