We are so delighted to be bringing you this Novena of Resurrection, a nine-day prayer experience with the theme of Earth as Our Original Monastery. To be a monk in the world means to recognize the vibrancy and wisdom of creation for our own spiritual unfolding. Thomas Merton believed the central role of a monk was to attend to the beauty of nature:
How necessary it is for monks to work in the fields, in the rain, in the sun, in the mud, in the clay, in the wind: these are our spiritual directors and our novice-masters. They form our contemplation. They instill us with virtue. They make us as stable as the land we live in. —Thomas Merton
Each of the nine days you receive a reflection by me on the nine themes we are exploring. The reflections are available in written and audio form. There will also be contemplative and creative invitations to practice. My wonderful teaching partner Betsey Beckman will be offering three movement videos with gentle invitations to dance with creation in a variety of ways. Our experience will be hosted in a private Ruzuku website where you can share your experience with your fellow monks.
While the experience is nine days long, you can linger with the materials as long as you need to.
Day 1: The monk in the world lives the new creation
Day 2: Nature is the first book of revelation and scripture text
Day 3: The elements are our soul friends and first spiritual director
Day 4: The river, mountains, and creatures are canonized as out first Saints
Day 5: Creation is our first sacred space
Day 6: Nature is the original icon and primordial sacrament revealing the face of God
Day 7: The seasons and cycles of creation invite us into the rhythm of the Hours
Day 8: All creation sings praise to God offering us the original liturgy
Day 9: Celebrating the wild spirit in creation and in you
If some images and music would help inspire you, remember that “Everything is Holy Now”: