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Ordinary Mysticism | Physically Spiritual S2E3

Updated: Oct 21, 2021

If a tree never grew out of being a sapling, or a person stayed a baby their entire life, we would think something is wrong. The Church’s tradition of prayer teaches that spiritual maturity includes freedom from sin and receiving infused contemplation, but these seem so rare. Why do we accept spiritual infancy as the norm? This episode of physically spiritual will begin to explore the church’s tradition of prayer and spirituality.

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2:30 3 Legged Stool

3:00 What is Mysticism?

5:15 My Introduction to Mysticism

7:15 What is Prayer

8:30 Are There 2 Paths?

9:30 How Do We Grow?

20:30 What the Sacraments Alone Are Not Enough?

22:00A Vision of the Path


Mysticism - "Spiritual progress tends toward ever more intimate union with Christ. This union is called "mystical" because it participates in the mystery of Christ through the sacraments - "the holy mysteries" - and, in him, in the mystery of the Holy Trinity. God calls us all to this intimate union with him, even if the special graces or extraordinary signs of this mystical life are granted only to some for the sake of manifesting the gratuitous gift given to all.” - Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) 2014 -

Fr. Thomas Dubay, S.M., The Fire Within: Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross and the Gospel on Prayer, Ignatius Press: 1989. -

What is Prayer? "Prayer is the raising of one's mind and heart to God or the requesting of good things from God" St. John Damascene, De fide orth. 3, 24: PG 94, 1089C

Are there two paths? - "All Christians in any state or walk of life are called to the fullness of Christian life and to the perfection of charity." (Vatican II, Lumen Gentium, 40.2) All are called to holiness: "Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect." (Mt 5: 48)” Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2013 - Ibid.

How do we Grow?

Christ Centered - Grace Dependant - Primacy of God’s Action

“Prayer has less to do with doing something than with delivering ourselves up to God’s Action” Fr. Jaques Philippe, Time for God, p.52 -

Interdependence of Prayer & Holiness - Mutual Self-Gift of God and Man

“Lifestyle and prayer grow or diminish together” - Dubay, Fire WIthin, p.9

“If we do not want to act habitually according to the Spirit of Christ, neither can we pray habitually in his name.” CCC, 2725 -

“Prayer and Christian life are inseparable, for they concern the same love and the same renunciation, proceeding from love; the same filial and loving conformity with the Father's plan of love; the same transforming union in the Holy Spirit who conforms us more and more to Christ Jesus; the same love for all men, the love with which Jesus has loved us." CCC, 2745 - Ibid.

Time - Fidelity & Perseverance - at least 15-20 minutes daily

“It is very important to fix a minimum length of time for prayer and not shorten it (except in really exceptional circumstances)” Philippe, Time for God, p.83

Silence - Silence is more than an absence of noise.

“In this silence the Spirit of adoption enables us to share in the prayer of Jesus” CCC, 2717 -

Why are the sacraments not enough? The sacraments in themselves are sufficient for complete sanctification, but we are insufficiently capable to receive what is offered. Prayer and Asceticism that are inspired and carried out in cooperation with Grace are the key to increasing our ability to receive the grace of the sacraments.

“Purgatory is Plan B.” - Dan Burke -

The Avila Institute -

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