Alice

Alice

Saturday, March 10, 2012

RETREAT






Grampa's retreat place.

Good morning ladies,
Grampa is writing the same thoughts to both of you this week.
I spent several days this past week on retreat.


Some people see retreat as getting away from the hustle and bussel of daily life. That surely can be a way of looking at “retreat”. I call that perspective a vacation.
Another way of looking at “retreat” is the act of separating yourself from the distractions of daily life: vocation, family, chores and all the other things that make up our daily lives.
“Distractions” is a good word here but at the same time I don’t want you to think that what we do everyday is a distraction. What we do everyday is live our lives and that living involves lots of things that must be done simply in order to have a life.
But these things can become distractions instead of teachers if we don’t have the eyes to see their deepr meanings or better yet if we don’t do them with the proper awareness.
So I get away so that I can see this day to day life that I live in a deeper kind of way...so that I can come back to these day to day things with a greater awareness of just how holy these ordinary things are and how holy this ordinary life I live is.
Then they are no longer distractions, they are life!
Another way of explaining all this to you is just to say that Grampa tries to live his life as a contemplative.
I’m not going to address “contemplative” in this post. We would be here a while trying to explain it.
But because I try to live my life as a contemplative (a monk in the world), I try to get away from everything now and then and just sit, read and think, “Boring!”, you say. It certainly can be. But it can also be transforming. 
You just can’t believe how noisy silence can be! But in the midst of all that noisey silence, one comes to see things for what they are. And if you are graced, you may actually learn how to "SEE".
So I share all these confusing words with both of you just to say,
You should have “retreat” as part of you spiritual lives.
And if either of you wants to know what that looks like, just ask Grampa.
I’ll be glad to give you some suggestions.
Imagine that!
I love you both so deeply!
Grampa
PS
I would love to take you to that place you see in the picture someday.

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