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Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 1
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Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 1
Hi All:

I'm writing to gain some perspective in regard to the method of praying the rosary. As an Orthodox, we were taught not to mix meditation with vocal prayer; as Byzantine Catholics, what do you think about this prohibition of the Orthodox? I've often thought that those who speak and write about praying the rosary do seem to discount the value of focusing upon the vocal prayer by saying that, without the meditations, the vocal prayers are simply rote repetition, which isn't necessarily true in my opinion. I know I've seen Dominican sources that allow the meditations to occur before, during, or after the vocal prayer (Blessed Be God, 1925) and this seems like the best way forward: meditate on the mysteries and then focus intently upon the vocal prayers all in one single unit. What are your opinions on this issue?

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John
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John
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Welcome, Mister Ort, to The Byzantine Forum.

When Mary received the word of God through the Archangel Gabriel, she pondered what it meant. Luke 1:29 teaches us that she tried to discern what the message from Gabriel meant. In Luke 1:34 she asked the angel how what was told to her could happen since she was a virgin. She surely wondered and meditated about what God had in store for her. She took in the events from her message from Gabriel, carried them with her like a treasure, and thought about them. Meditating on Scripture and the events of salvation can offer us the chance to use them to grow closer to the Lord and for Him to form us (and our life choices) in Him. That has always been my understanding of meditative prayer like the Rosary. I see much good in this approach.

The East, however, approaches prayer differently. For us, repetitive prayer - like The Jesus Prayer - is sort of like keeping a telephone call open. As our body prays on the sacred Name of the Lord our spirit sets aside all earthly cares to meet the Divine and spend time with Him. The inner stillness allows us to hear Him when He speaks to us.

I know the Church Fathers speak much about the form of prayer available to us by using The Jesus Prayer. I am unaware that that there is any prohibition on meditative prayer. I've always concluded that the Church Fathers simply preferred the prayer of silence. But this is just my thought and I don't really know anything about anything.

John

Joined: Mar 2021
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D
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I like the idea of keeping the telephone call open in regards to the Jesus prayer - I'm going to keep that idea in mind.


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