Lotus of the Heart > Path of Spirit > Spiritual Intimacy in Friendship

 
 

The Three Kisses

Friendship and Spiritual Intimacy

Dec 10, 2013

Saying For Today: Not moving toward or away from others - just Being effortless being. Aloofness, which is intimate with the absolute and relative of this Moment.


LOTUS OF THE HEART

An Interspiritual-Interfaith Work
of The Lotus Fellowship and
Arem Nahariim-Samadhi

Arem, a vowed Contemplative of Greenbough House of Prayer, offers an interspiritual work focusing on cultivating the Heart of Compassion. He integrates wisdom from the major spiritual Paths. To contact Arem, see the email address at the conclusion of this presentation. May you always know you are blessed!

* * *

Lotus Flower - Lotus_Petals, IMG_8555

*Lotus Flower - Lotus Petals, Bahman Farzad, Flickr

* * *

Of course, at times I sense a profound aloneness, but then I realize spontaneously that is mainly based on the idea of lack. Most of the time, there is a profound realization of having moved beyond needing others to resonate with to be content within myself. Not moving toward or away from others - just Being effortless being. Aloofness, which is intimate with the absolute and relative of this Moment. Seems a contradiction to my mind: such apartness, but such non-personal, non-particular intimacy that is most lovingly intimate for being non-personal, non-particular - before and beyond sensations of closeness but not devoid of being the Space that invites the shifts of sensation.

*Arem Nahariim-Samadhi. Personal Correspondence. Dec. 9.2013.

* * *

Blue Perfection

*Blue Perfection, Larri Cochran, Flickr

* * *

A man of many companions may come to ruin,
but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

(Proverbs 18.24, ESV)

The Christian mystic St. Aelred of Rievaulx (12th Century), raised in the court of the kings of Scotland, became a Cistercian monk and, soon afterward, Abbot of the monastery: which grew to over six hundred monks and became the largest religious community in England while under his leadership. His classic text is Spiritual Friendship.

St. Aelred called the monastery a school of love and encouraged true friendship among the monks, reflecting their friendship with Jesus Christ. Custom in monasteries had been to discourage such friendly intimacy. St. Aelred believed that a monk could not suppress need for friendly intimacy with others and enjoy friendly intimacy with the Divine.

The Abbot taught about three kisses. He wrote, "There is a physical kiss, a spiritual kiss, and an intellectual kiss." The physical kiss is when two persons touch lips. St. Aelred spoke of this as "a pleasant experience to share," one that "rouses and joins together the affection of those who embrace." The second kiss is the spiritual one. This is "a union of spirits." The intellectual kiss is "an infusion of God's grace."

St. Aelred referred to the spiritual kiss as that between friends who do not need physical contact. This is "an affection of the heart" and "a meeting of spirits." Such a spirit kiss, or intimacy of friendship apart from bodily contact, is possible due to the nonlocality of spirit: "There can be one spirit in many bodies." Spirit is pervasive, and even as we have union with the Divine, mingling Spirit with spirit beyond boundaries of our bodies, we can enjoy the same in spiritual intimacy with friends.

St. Aelred exemplified wonderfully this kiss of spirit in his last ten years of life, in which he suffered much from gout and stone. Much of the time he could not leave his cell in the infirmary. Still, he welcomed groups of monks, twenty to thirty a time, to visit and lounge on his bed. This contrasted with the Abbots whom St. Aelred's biographer referred to:

He did not treat them with the pedantic imbecility habitual in some silly abbots who, if a monk takes a brother's hand in his own, or says anything that they do not like, demand his cowl, strip and expel him. Not so Aelred, not so.

St. Aelred died January 12, 1167. He had lived to exemplify remarkably, through his suffering, the kiss of spirit that he had taught as essential to intimate companionship with Jesus.

A friend is always a friend,
and relatives are born to share our troubles.

(Proverbs 17.17, CEV)

* * *

Take, O Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding and my will; all that I have and possess. You have given them to me; to you, O Lord, I restore them. All things are yours: Dispose of them according to your will. Give me your love and your grace; for this is enough for me.

*St. Ignatius of Loyola, Christian Contemplative

* * *

NAMAST�

The Sacred in Me bows to the Sacred in You

*Photo, Angelito De Luz

* * *

♥ ♥ ♥

* * * CLOSING BLESSING * * *

Namaste'

The Sacred in Me bows to the Sacred in You

OM Shanti Shanti Shanti OM

To contact The Lotus Fellowship, write to 77ahavah77@gmail.com .

 

Lotus of the Heart > Path of Spirit > Spiritual Intimacy in Friendship

©Brian Wilcox 2024