time management with the monks

One mile south of Georgia O’Keefe’s beloved Ghost Ranch in New Mexico, thirteen miles down a cliff-hugging dirt road in the heart of Chama Canyon, you will find Christ In The Desert. The Benedictine Monastery is cloister to about twenty monks.

I’d fantasized about retreating to the remote monastery for about fifteen years. And when I finally made the white-knuckling drive to the end of the long road and saw that adobe-anchored cross kissing the sky, I felt … Home.

The peace. The humility. The sheer devotion. Getting to Christ In The Desert was a pilgrimage that my cells thirsted for. It’s worth mentioning here that I considered being a nun when I was about six years old. Then I learned what celibacy was and heard that there was a lot of cleaning involved in convent life, and I asked Jesus for his forgiveness because I just knew I wasn’t going to make the cut. I decided I wanted my own variety show, like Cher. Religion, cabaret…it’s all a kind of intense theater of passion.

I arrived just in time for prayer. The monks sing their prayers.

Glorious Gregorian chants echoed against the baked clay walls. My heart swelled. Tho’ the heavy sin-trip of the Psalm wasn’t lost on me, I was swept away by the beauty of it all. And I so needed to be swept away.

When the chants concluded and the monks filed out behind the tabernacle, I was able to be alone in the chapel for a long, sweet time. I thought about hope – which I have a very cantankerous relationship with. And I thought about priorities of the most divine kind. My priorities have been bumping against each other for a while now – clanking around and grinding down my heart. The focus of my trip was to put my so called priorities on the altar. Smash few. Polish some. Reorganize them to sync with my soul.

Above all, prayer holds the first place in the monk’s day and nothing must be preferred to this activity. Prayer involves coming into contact with divine life, in openness to the mystery of love which is written in our hearts.” The monks are encouraged to stop their chores if they feel inspired to pray. The passion to pray comes before work and all other tasks. The Brothers pray seven times in day in collective chanting and in solitude. Seven times a day.

So many mornings I have chosen email over meditation. I let deadlines rank over a stretch or a cuddle or a glass of water swallowed slowly and appreciated. I override the call to feel myself – the call to pray, or meditate, or be fully awake. Prayer comes in all forms and each one spoken brings grace to the day.

Thank you. Yes. Have mercy. Keep them safe. How lovely. Courage, please. I love you.

Our hearts are the altars. Our days, when lived awake, are another chance to know the joys of what matters most.

Attend first to the divine and the work at hand becomes art.

Tune in tomorrow for Part II of my monastery adventures…

related posts
Danielle-LaPorte-Whats-the-motive

But what’s the MOTIVE? (And BTW, pure motives RULE).

But what’s the MOTIVE? (And BTW, pure motives RULE). Same gesture. Same joke. Same service. Same policy. How can you spot the selfish intention when the branding is so glorious? Or how can you sense the true wisdom when the delivery is so 2000-and tacky? How can you really hear someone when your judgement is clouded by…judgement?

Danielle-LaPorte-its-not-always-self-sabotage

It’s not always self-sabotage. It’s just…what it takes.

Lightwork can be a fight. If you think being on the “spiritual” side of progress guarantees you harmony, then either you haven’t been at it long enough or you’ve been playing it safe. Harmonizing, healing, serving, shining…it’s messy work. Beautiful. Worth it. But messy.

Are-you-tired

Are you tired? Or just really (justifiably) angry?

Of course there are times — perhaps entire years, when we are bone-baked exhausted. But being fed up is not the same as being fatigued. In the seasons when we are vivacious and brimming with life, we can’t let ourselves slip into the reflex of heaviness.

A question for your growth

A question for your growth (that has nothing to do with quick, easy or “proven.”)

Here’s the most powerful question (that we too often forget) to ask ourselves when we’re on the hunt for solutions: “But… what suits me?”

Deep Positivity Danielle LaPorte

“Deep positivity” vs. “positive thinking”

If there could be a slogan for manifestation theory, this would be it: Energy follows thought. Energy follows thought. Energy follows thought. And by the way…energy follows thought. Manifestation happens from the mind.

The Ultimate and Immediate Why

The Ultimate and Immediate Why

The Ultimate and Immediate Why:
Swallowing fresh water,
inhaling
clean air
through our mouths,
speaking
words of adoration, and
kissing.

Danielle-LaPorte-WHT-Truthbomb

The lie of inadequacy.

We’ve got to fall for some lies to get to our truth. The Lie of Inadequacy. It goes like this…“You were born defective, not good enough, flawed.” nooo! Erase erase. Blow it UP.

Loving yourself Danielle LaPorte

Loving yourself…when you hate yourself.

If “love” is confusing, then “SELF-love” can be mystifying. So I’m pressing pause on the self-love conversation to insert the word compassion… The feel of “compassion” is more direct and melting for most of us. So let’s start there. Because…

Danielle-LaPorte-you-are-the-guru copy

[VIDEO] You are the Guru

NOBODY knows better than you what’s right for you. NOBODY. Let me say what I really mean: NOBODY.
Advice? Get some. Oracles? Consult them. Friends? Worship them. Actual gurus? Honour them. Final say? YOU. All you. No matter what.

The best self help is self compassion danielle laporte.jpg

The best self-help is self-compassion.

The best self-help is self-compassion. When you give yourself credit for making it this far in life—and still being a Gentle Soul—then you’ll know the Truth of Love. When, in a courageously still moment you hear yourself say, “I have everything I need right now,” then you’ll know the Truth of Faith.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This