Friday, March 25, 2011

Friday Five - Spiritual Disciplines

Today's Friday Five asks us to share about five spiritual disciplines that we have tried or used. This seems especially timely for me because I am looking for new disciplines that I can experience and integrate into my own practice. This is also a part of CPE right now and we are looking at different disciplines as a part of group spiritual direction. So here are my five.

Centering Prayer - I've read/heard about using centering prayer before, but never really experienced it until recently through Spiritual Direction. It has been a bit of a challenge but I've enjoyed practicing it. I'm looking forward to see what comes of it in the future.

Journaling - This is probably the discipline I've used for the longest and the most consistently. I've been using it as a spiritual discipline since before I knew what spiritual disciplines are. Even now, journaling is a very powerful experience for me and I expect that it will continue to be this way for many years to come.

Prayer Beads - I first learned about ways of using prayer beads in high school at summer camp when my counselor made some for all of us and we used them during our cabin prayer time at night. Later, I made some for myself and for friends. Now I have a couple of rosaries that I use for the same purpose. I don't use this discipline as much anymore, but still cherish it and will pull it out on occasion.

Tai Chi - This came as a part of a music appreciation class I took in college. Even though it wasn't specifically taught as a spiritual discipline, I used it and enjoyed it. I miss using this and I'm hoping that I can eventually find my notes about it and get back into it. If I can't find my notes I'm sure I will find some other way of getting information about it, but it will definitely take a back seat to other things!

Lectio Divina - I'd heard the term and knew it was "spiritual reading", but never really experienced it until earlier this year when it was used as part of a conference I attended. The thing that really struck me was that the conference facilitators made the decision to use a poem rather than scripture because, as they put it, "for ministers, scripture is more a tool of the trade" and the temptation was there to think about how to preach/teach the verse, not listen to it and experience it. I have since begun using the process for both scripture and other readings and found it very meaningful. This one is probably my favorite at the moment!

I know I have been neglecting my self-care updates, but I've been staying on top of it. I'm still seeing my therapist weekly, and I'm enjoying using spiritual direction and making self-care an educational priority. Tomorrow I'm going to spend the day taking care of myself - getting a new haircut, manicure, and pedicure then having lunch at my favorite deli!


  1. I wish I was "better" at journaling...I go in bits and spurts. Enjoyed reading this.

  2. I've been thinking about trying Tai Chi myself. It looks relaxing. I've also used prayer beads in the past, but haven't in a while.