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Volume #0: Issue #3
İMarch, Vernal Equinox 2012
Web Revision: Epiphany - Mar. 20th, 2015

Edited by GHFr. Pneuma Asteros, Order Chief Adept & President.

Mystical Meditations Upon The Collects
(Season of LENT)
by Mary Violet Firth (aka. Dion Fortune)



So many Christians miss much of the power and majesty of their religious faith by not participating in the symbolic journey of the traditional liturgical year. This is certainly true for most Protestant branches of mainstream Christianity - with the noted exceptions of Christmas, Easter, and possibly Pentecost. All religions and forms of spiritual expression have a traditional calendar of events important to them and this allows them to take notice and focus on specific aspects of their inner spiritual lives by tying in with outer liturgical events of their Lord/Lady, God, Saints, or other concepts. Those of us within the Society of The Astral Star, (The Order of The Star of Bethlehem), make use of the standard Christian Liturgical Year as defined within the Latin (Roman) Rite with acceptance of the Greek (Orthodox) Rite as a valid expression of yearly events. We additionally include the more esoteric aspects of traditional magickal spiritual expressions.

The Society of The Astral Star, and it's members make use of the Book of Common Prayer of the Anglican Church for a listing of the proper collect (prayer) within the Christian Liturgical (Church) year. We further use Dion Fortune's Mystical Meditations on the Collects (ISBN: 0-87728-734-1) as the basis for many of our meditations. We have additions to this work of course, however the primary meditations for reflection are to be found within the pages of that valuable book. Serious students and practitioners within the OAB system will want to purchase both The Book of Common Prayer and Mystical Meditations Upon The Collects by Dion Fortune, (aka Violet Mary Firth).

Lent is a time of personal reflection and introspection. We regard Lent as a Penitential Season - a time in which we try to examine the wrongs we have all committed as individuals against our brothers and sisters, our fellow mortal human beings, and even the created order itself. Whenever possible, we apologize and try to atone for our wrong doing(s). Most members of the Order sustain from red meat and other dietary *luxuries*. Periods of fasting are not uncommon. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and goes through Good Friday - the day we remember the death by crucifixion of our Lord Jesus and the internment of his remains into the tomb. The season proceeds the liturgical season of Easter. This section lists the meditations for the collects in the liturgical season that we use for Lent. Enjoy!


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 62-63

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 103 (or 103:8-14) / PM: 103 (or 103:8-14)
All Years: Jol. 2:1-2, 12-17 (or Isa. 58:1-12) / 2Cor.5:20b-6:10 / Mat. 6:1-6, 16-21

The Collect:

"Almighty and Everlasting God, who hatest nothing that thou hast made, and dost forgive the sins of all them that are penitent; create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we worthily lamenting our sins, and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of thee, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

The Meditation:

Keynote: "Self-Examiniation"

"With this day we enter upon the most important season of the Church's year, the long purification which prepares for the down-pouring of power at Easter. Our task during Lent is to face ourselves, bring our natures under discipline, and make ready for the illumination that comes with the Easter power-tides."

"People are sometimes estranged from the Church by what they feel to be the abject tone of some of her prayers, by their insistence upon the sinfulness and helplessness of man, and his powerlessness without Divine aid. Let us try to realize that these prayers are written in an older form of English than that which is in use among us at the present day, and try to understand their spirit rather than resent their wording. If we read other books written at the same time as the Prayer Book, we should find ourselves in a similar difficulty."

"The collect for Ash Wednesday presents two ideas for our meditation, firstly, the concept expressed in the beautiful phrase, 'Almighty and everlasting God, who hatest nothing that though hast made, and dost forgive the sins of all them that are penitent.' Here we get a realization of the distinction that is drawn between the sin and the sinner. It is the sin, the error, with which the spiritual forces deal as they maintain the cosmic balance, and the one who errs, if he persists in his error, may become involved in that adjustment and be ground exceeding fine in the mills of God; but all who are penitent, all who turn again, are forgiven, that is to say, are put into harmony with God. It is the sin which is destroyed, not the sinner."

"Again, we get a clear realization in this collect that we have no right to hate any souls, whatever may be its condition. We may not condone evil, we must stand up fearlessly for principles, but we must not hate. We must never uncover evil unless we have the means of healing it; to hold a soul up to scorn serves no useful purpose."

"The second idea presented to us by this collect emphasizes the need for recognizing our own short comings. We must be our own judges, and the sentence that we pronounce on ourselves when we commence our Lenten meditation we must carry out during the forty days in the wilderness upon which we are now entering."

"If we observe our lives, we shall find that a period of self-condemnation and abasement almost invariably precedes a period of flowing spiritual power. This self-disgust must be carefully distinguished from discontent with our circumstances or mere depression. We realize in this spiritual assessment that the problem lies within, and that no change of circumstances could amend it; secondly, far from being weakened by our feelings, we are roused to activity, being thoroughly angry with ourselves, and this anger and self-disgust begets a determination not to fall again, and so earn our own self contempt. There is nothing abject about true repentance, it is an energetic rising up of the nature to do better."

"A recognition of sin is not a falling down flat of the soul in a groveling attitude; it is the soul that is sinning that is groveling. Recognition is the exact opposite of this supine condition, for it is an uprising of the soul. I always think of the repentant sinner as standing bolt upright, shoulders squared, feet firmly planted, looking the Master straight in the eyes and admitting his error like a man. To admit the wrong, shoulder the consequences, and resolutely set out at all costs to return to the Path gives us the right to hold up our heads and claim the respect of our fellow-men, from whatever pit of abasement we may have to climb, and the Father, Who sees us afar off, always comes to meet us."


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 65-66

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 51 (or 51:1-13) / PM: 25 (25:3-9)
A) Even Years: Gen. 2:4b-9, 15-17, 25-3:7 / Rom. 5:12-19(20-21) / Mat. 4:1-11
B) Odd Years: Gen. 9:8-17 / 1Pet. 3:18-22 / Mrk. 1:9-13

The Collect:

"O Lord, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights; give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness and true holiness, to thy honor and glory, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "Self-Discipline"

"The keynote of this meditation is self-discipline, the body being brought into subjection in order that the higher self may come into full and free manifestation on the physical plane."

"The good I would, I do not; and the evil that I would not, that I do,' is a condition which must be overcome upon the probationary Path, there must be no involuntary movements when we are climbing the path 'narrow as the edge of a razor.' Therefore it is that all the saints and mystics of all traditions, without exception, have practiced ascetic discipline in some degree."

"Those voluntary exercises of the will are devised for the twofold purpose of strengthening the will itself and training the bodily appetites to take denial without undue protest. Self inflicted suffering can never be pleasing to God as such, and if it is undertaken for that end it defeats itself, weakening the body and unbalancing the mind; it is not the blood of rams, still less the suffering of His children that is an acceptable sacrifice to the God Who is Love, but rather the dedicated will; but the will cannot be dedicated unless it is disciplined."

"The small self denials which are customary among practicing Christians during Lent, Ember Days, and Fridays throughout the year are the gymnastics of the soul, and keep it strong and supple to meet the sudden crises that test its stamina."

"This week, then, let us make up our minds to dedicate to God and body and its needs, the instincts and their desires, and all that comprises the lower nature; let us 'Marry efforts to desire,' and make a start upon the training of the will that shall enable us to realize our ideals in our lives."


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 67-69

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 33:12-22 / PM: 16 (or 16:5-11)
A) Even Years: Gen. 12:1-8 / Rom. 4:1-5(6-12) 13-17 / Jhn. 3:1-17
B) Odd Years: Gen. 22:1-14 / Rom. 8:31-39 / Mrk. 8:31-38

The Collect:

"Almighty God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves, keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "We Shine With Reflected Light"

"'The realization that 'we have no power of ourselves' is the beginning of omnipotence."

"Many people will no doubt take exception to the statement in this collect that, 'we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves,' but it has a profound significance, and the consequences of a failure to realize this fundamental truth are all about us in the many organizations that seek to give new forms to old truths."

"Unless the Lord keep the house the watchman waketh in vain.' We do not live with our own life, but because there is at the heart of each on of us a Divine Spark form the Central Fire which is God."

"It is by this one Divine Spark that we live; through it, we are part of the God-Life; it is indestructible in its existence and unlimited in the spiritual power that can be drawn through it. Did we but realize its significance we should be as gods in the true sense, for the God-life would be awake within us."

"Those prayers of the Church which stress the helplessness and hopelessness of man in a way derogatory to the pride of human nature are really indicating the path of the innermost shrine of the Temple, and it is not until we have an actual realization of all the practical implication of the statement, 'Your life is hid with Christ in God,' and 'He who will lose his life for my sake shall find it,' that we shall be able to tread that Path."

In such a realization we do not throw ourselves passively on the hands of a beneficent Providence, but invoke Omnipotence to flow through our consciousness where hitherto self-will and desire have had their channels. In order to achieve this, the lower self, which draws its strength from the instincts, must stand absolutely aside in order that the flow of the current of life may be reversed, for the Divine Life, instead of coming to us by what are popularly called natural means, is to come to us direct."

Let it not be thought that this is an unnatural process; it is no more unnatural than an eclipse; but it is rare, and but few can achieve it, and even they can only maintain it as long as the higher consciousness is functioning. That is why the saints of the mystic tradition record great tides of power and light and corresponding periods of darkness and aridity, for they, denying themselves the consolations of human life, are left desolate when the channel of the Divine flow is closed by the weaknesses that are ever with us until the final goal be reached."

It is here that the training in the techniques of the mystical life is of such value, for it enables us to maintain a balance that shall preserve us from the extremes of aridity and ecstasy; teaching us to contact indirectly when we cannot contact directly."


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 70-71

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 95 (or 95:6-11) / PM: 19:17-14
A) Even Years: Exo. 17:1-7 / Rom. 5:1-11 / Jhn. 4:5-26(27-38) 39-42
B) Odd Years: Exo. 20:1-17 / Rom. 7:13-25 / Jhn. 2:13-22

The Collect:

"We beseech thee, Almighty God, look upon the hearty desires of thy humble servants, and stretch forth the right hand of thy Majesty to be our defense against all our enemies; through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "Cast Out The Beam That Is In Thine Own Eye"

"Here we have, though expressed in metaphor drawn from a primitive phase of the tradition of Israel, an invocation of the power of God.."

"Be still and know that I am God.' represents the height of moral power, and only the strong can rise to it, for that 'stilling' of desire, anger, and fear is a supreme achievement of the disciplined soul. In this prayer of the soul does not attempt the high places of spiritual attainment, but rather invokes the power of God to work upon the problems of daily life. It necessarily follows upon this that the law of God must also work upon these problems, and when we invoke God's power upon our 'hearty desires' and the issue between ourselves and those we feel to be our enemies, we are going to the very roots of the matter, and 'He will turn over and overturn till he whose right it is shall reign,' and we must be prepared to find that it may not be our right to reign and that we must sacrifice our 'hearty desires' and make restitution to our enemies."

"How many of us, when we pray to God for protection, ask also to be cleansed of our own errors? We thing in our blindness that if the attack from without could be stopped, there would be peace in the city. Does experience show this to be the case? Alas, no."

"The city of Mansoul, putting her trust in God, has impregnable fortifications; it is treachery alone that opens the gate. Could malice harm us if we did not resent it? Slander can do little to harm a pure, upright and gentle nature. Its inherent integrity is its defense; mankind is not so blind that it cannot discern character. Our weakness in the face of an unwarranted attack lies in descending to the level of the attackers. If we remain steadfastly within our fortress of uplifted spiritual consciousness and refuse to be tempted forth to give battle on the plains, no one can penetrate into our city."

"If, on the other hand, being attacked with malice, we respond with malice, we have opened the gates to our enemies, and fighting is taking place in the streets of our city. Whoever wins in the long run, we suffer damage."

"Therefore, let us pray to be cleansed from inner weaknesses as well as defended from external attack; without this cleansing, no effectual defense is possible, for by our weaknesses we open ourselves to the attacks we dread. 'In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength' when Œthe blast of the terrible ones is as the storm against the wall.'"

"For this week, then, let those who are prepared to abide the issue and follow the right, whatever it may turn out to be, invoke the power of God upon their 'hearty desires' and their enemies equally; they may see unexpected changes; they may find there is a price to pay; but they will come out into green pastures and in the end will be at peace."


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 72-73

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 23 / PM: 122
A) Even Years: 1Sam. 16:1-13 / Eph. 5:(1-7) 8-14 / Jhn. 9:1-13(14-27) 28-38
B) Odd Years: 2Chr. 36:14-23 / Eph. 2:4-10 / Jhn. 6:4-15

The Collect:

"Grant we beseech thee, Almighty God, that we, who for our evil deeds do worthily deserve to be punished, by the comfort of thy grace may mercifully be relieved; through our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "Expiation By Realization"

"In this collect, we meet with a very profound aspect of the Law of Redemption, wherein are utilized the workings of Divine Grace for the ab-reaction of evil. We are very apt to feel that the consequence of wrong is a thing that has to be endured to the bitter end and cannot be influenced or eased; whereas, every time a true spiritual healing is accomplished, the burden of sin is lifted."

"This explain anything of the nature and workings of this force would require very much more space than can be assigned to a meditation; indeed, it is doubtful whether any explanation could be adequate, for like electricity, we know this force rather for what it does than for what it is. It must suffice to say that a prayer for God 's grace brings a very powerful response. A force works upon the soul, uplifting it into a sense of power and freedom. That which was obscure becomes clear to consciousness; that which was entangled becomes straight. The experiment has only to be made with the powerful invocation of faith in the Name of Our Lord Christ Jesus for it to be found that a force has been set in action."

"In our struggles with the burden of our errors and the weakness of our characters, let us invoke the help of Godıs grace instead of trying to go in our own strength."

"For this week, then, let us meditate upon the power of God working on our souls; strengthening our weaknesses, cleansing our impurities, enlightening our understandings, and vivifying our love. This power we invoke is not any power of our own nature, not any power of created existence, but an emanation of the Divine Mind 'in Whom we live and move and have our being.'"

"When we realize that we do not live by any separate existence of our own, but as part of the One Life which is God; when we realize that an intensification of this ever-inflowing Life can be produced by dwelling upon It in thought and calling upon It with the invocatory power of the knowledge of Its reality and potency, we shall find that a great load is lifted from our shoulders; life will be eased of its strain, for we shall learn that our own character and its reactions are the only problems we have to contend with; all else is ruled by the Divine Law, which ordereth all things harmoniously. If we bring our thoughts, feelings, and the reactions that spring from them into obedience to the Divine Law, we too shall, by Its omnipotent power, be tuned into harmony in mind, body, and estate."


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 74-75

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 130 / PM: 51 (or 51:11-16)
A) Even Years: Ezk. 37:1-3(4-10) 11-14 / Rom. 6:16-23 / Jhn. 11:(1-16) 17-44
B) Odd Years: Jer. 31:31-34 / Heb. 5:(1-4) 5-10 / Jhn. 12:20-23

The Collect:

"We beseech thee, Almighty God, mercifully to look upon thy people; that thy great goodness they may be governed and preserved evermore, both in body and soul; through Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "God Our Father"

"The roots of our being must be in God. 'In Him we live and move and have our being.' God is the beginning and the end of our existence, and His Nature is our law. Always must we come back to the One Existence. Always must we seek to align ourselves with the cosmic law that 'guideth Arcturus with his sons.' Not otherwise can we find harmony. If we understand prayer aright we shall know that God does not give us peace in answer to our prayer, but that by our prayer we bring ourselves into harmony with God and then the 'peace of God which passeth all understanding' fills our hearts."

"When God governs and preserves us we are at peace. Why then is it that we are ever disturbed, for we can never escape from His governance, and His preservation is our very existence". We can never pass beyond the reign of His law; all the time are we governed and preserved. The inharmony exists only in our lack of realization and our fear."

"Let us, therefore, set this week aside to ask for help from the Master in revising our standard of work lest t fall from its high ideal and we become limited, prejudiced or stereotyped in our outlook. Let us constantly meditate on the Beatitudes so that we may not depart from the 'pattern shown us in the Mount' - so that we may not drop down from the exalted consciousness which enabled us to glimpse the spiritual ideal that started us off on our quest."

"Our prayer to God to govern and preserve us is really a reminder to ourselves that we should wake up from our dream of distress and realize that 'underneath are the everlasting arms,' and that 'neither height nor depth nor any other creature can separate us from the love of God.'"


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 76-77

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM & PM: 118:19-29 & 22:1-21 (or 22:1-11)
All Years: Mat. 21:1-11 A) Even Years: Isa. 45:21-25 (or Isa. 52:13-53:12) / Phi. 2:5-11 / Mat. (26:36-75) 27:1-54(55-66)
B) Odd Years: Isa. 45:21-25 (or Isa. 52:13-53:12) / Phi. 2:5-11 / Mrk. (14:32-72) 15:1-39 (40-47)

The Collect:

"Almighty and everlasting God, who, of thy tender love towards mankind, hast sent thy Son, our Savior Jesus Christ, to take upon him our flesh, and to suffer death upon the Cross, that all mankind should follow the example of his great humility; mercifully grant, that we may both follow the example of his patience and also be made partakers of his resurrection; through the same Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "Take Up Thy Cross And Follow Me"

"This collect teaches us to follow the example of the Master in order that we may be partakers of His resurrection. The soul goes through its crucifixion in order that it may preach to the spirits in prison."

"With this collect we pray that we may drink of His Cup. It is not a prayer to be lightly used. But few souls can go by the Way of the Cross in its mystical sense, but all can use their experience of life as a means of helping others. Let our own sufferings teach us sympathy. Let our own limitations teach us mercy. Let our own impurities, as we hope for forgiveness ourselves, teach us to call nothing unclean beyond redemption."

"We may not be able to 'give our bodies to be burned,' but we can have the charity which 'suffereth long and is kind.'"

"We may not be able to feed the five thousand, but we can give a cup of cold water where it is needed. Let us take for our meditation this week the task of being Christ-Like in little things, for this is the beauty of holiness."


GHFr. Pneuma, OAB, Additions to Dion Fortune's Mystical Meditations On The Collects,

Administrative Note:

Dion Fortune does not list a meditation for the collect in her book, Mystical Meditations on the Collects (ISBN: 0-87728-734-1), for the Monday before Easter, hence this is an OAB addition to that work.

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM & PM: 78:14-20, 23-25
All Years: Exo. 12:1-14a / 1 Cor. 11:23-26(27-32) / Jhn. 13:1-15 (or Luk. 22:14-30

The Collect:

"Almighty God, whose dear Son, on the night before he suffered, did institute the Sacrament of his Body and Blood; Mercifully grant that we may thankfully receive the same in remembrance of Him, who in these holy mysteries giveth us a pledge of life eternal; the same Thy Son Christ Jesus our Lord, who now liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Spirit ever, One God, world without end. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "xxxxxx"



Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 78-79

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 22:1-21 (or 22:1-11) / PM: 40:1-14 (or 69:1-23)
All Years: Isa. 52:13-53:12 (or Gen. 22:1-18)(or Wis. 2:12-24) / Heb. 10:1-25 / Jhn. (18:1-40) 19:1-37
Tarot Key: The Hanged Man.

The Collect:

"Almighty God, we beseech thee graciously to behold this thy family, for which our Lord Christ Jesus was contented to be betrayed, and given up into the hands of wicked men, and to suffer death upon the Cross, who now liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "The Love Of Brethren"

"The collect of the most tragic commemoration of the Christian year contains no note of grief, but speaks of us as Godıs 'family,' for whose sake our Lord suffered and triumphed. We ask the Heavenly Father 'graciously to behold this thy family,' who has 'gone before us into Galilee.'"

"If we really felt that all God's children were on big family how differently we should act. If we felt towards the stranger that is within our gate and the brother at the ends of the earth whom we have never seen as if they were our loved ones, would it not bring the Kingdom of Heaven on earth? Let us take our meditation on this day, which commemorates the great sacrifice of Our Lord, the words, 'Little children, I would that you should love one another.' If we can only achieve that, His sacrifice will not have been in vain. 'God so love the world that He gave His only-begotten Son that we should not perish, but have everlasting life.' Is it too much to ask that we should love one another even as little children of the same family?"


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 80-81

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM: 22:1-21 (or 22:1-11) / PM: 40:1-14 (or 69:1-23)
All Years: Isa. 52:13-53:12 (or Gen. 22:1-18)(or Wis. 2:12-24) / Heb. 10:1-25 / Jhn. (18:1-40) 19:1-37
Tarot Key: The Hanged Man.

The Collect:

"Almighty and everlasting God, by whose Spirit the whole body of the Church is governed and sanctified; receive our supplications and prayers, which we offer before thee for all estates of men in they holy Church, that every member of the same, in his vocation and ministry, may truly and godly serve thee; through our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "The Work Of The Laity"

"The priest of the Roman Catholic Church have behind them the unceasing prayers of the encloistered Orders. The convents and monasteries of Contemplatives who undertake no active work for God in the world are by no means abodes of idleness and inaction, but rather power houses of spiritual energy."

"Why should not our own clergy have in the prayers of the faithful a similar source of support? The power of organized prayer is very great. And not only is there the moral support of the knowledge that they are being 'backed up' in their work, but certain little-known laws of the spiritual life come into operation, with very tangible results. A 'circuit' is formed, and power flows therein."

"The priest, if he be a true priest and not a parson (from the Latin, persona - a mask), will be much in prayer over his work; but the effect of regular, organized prayer on the part of his flock, not a perfunctory repetition of set forms, but an earnest outpouring of spiritual energy, will prove in the highest degree inspiring and sustaining."

"Priest and people, acting and reacting on each other, can lift each other to great heights. For although God's grace is the source of all spiritual energy, yet it must come to our consciousness through the channels of the mind, and we should learn to co-operate intelligently with the work of the Holy Ghost in our hearts, availing ourselves of those little-known laws of the Inner Life which the Church of Rome understands so well, and which faith - healers and revivalists avail themselves of without understanding."

"Just as man consists of spirit, soul, and body, so does the Church. her spirit is the Grace of God; her body is the mundane organization but her soul is the spiritual life of her children. If this be inert and perfunctory, as it has been at certain period of her history, the Church is even as a man would be if the functions of his mind were in abeyance. Spirit and body have no communication one with another, and he is an imbecile. But if the intelligence awaken, then does the spirit within him find expression."

"God is ever more ready to give than we are to receive, but He cannot pour the grace of His power into the organization of the Church save through the collective consciousness of Her children."


Dion Fortune, Mystical Meditations On The Collects, Pgs. 82-83

The Scriptures / Lessons:

Psalms: AM & PM: 130 (or 31:1-5)
All Years: Job. 14:1-14 / 1Pet. 4:1-8 / Mat. 27:57-66 (or Jhn. 19:38-42.

The Collect:

"Grant, O Lord, that as we are baptized into the death of thy blessed Son our Savior Jesus Christ, so by continual mortifying our corrupt affections we may be buried with him; and that through the grave, and gate of death, we may pass to our joyful resurrection; for his merits, who died and was buried, and rose again for us, thy Son Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen."

The Meditation:
Keynote: "Spiritual Joy"

"'Through the grave, and gate of death, we pass to our joyful resurrection', says the collect. The place of joy in the Christian discipline is but little understood. the Church, realizing the supreme significance of the Passion, stresses the doctrine of purification through suffering until suffering has become the keynote of the Christian discipline. This is a great half-truth which is mis-leading. The education of the soul through suffering is a prime law of mystic psychology, but suffering is not the be-all and end-all of the Way of the Cross. If we read the story of the Passion we shall note that the Way of the Cross begins in Gethsemane, but it does not end on Calvary. The story of the Crucifixion terminates, not with the burial of Our Lord, but with His glorious Resurrection. It is Resurrection which is the culmination of the Passion, not the Death."

"This wonderful prayer teaches us that it is by 'mortifying our corrupt affections' that we share in Our Lord's death, and thence in His joyful Resurrection. It is the death of evil qualities that is the desired sacrifice. It is our lower self we fasten to the Cross in order that our higher self may rise into freedom with joy. We cannot manifest our true selves until the baser side of our nature has been put to the sacrificial death. Then do we rise into newness of life and spiritual freedom. Then, and then only, can we know joy. It is only when the spirit in man is free from the imperious domination of the senses that it can bring the Godhead down into manhood and take the manhood up into the Godhead."

"Let us take for our meditation this evening the death of all that is coarse, cowardly, and selfish in our natures and the freeing of the spirit within us, so that our ideals, not our passions, shall govern our lives. Then indeed shall we have a joyful resurrection of the Christ Within."


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