If I want to savour something of the spirituality of Miriam of Magdala then I am going need an immersion in Yeshua’s parable of the Kingdom of God. She more than most would have been drawn into his koan -like parables, his paradoxical beatitudes and pithy sayings on the abundance of this realm of existence.
Commentaries on the kingdom of God theme are monumental. But what I have found most deeply nourishing is simply to pray ‘Thy Kingdom come’ as a way of saying ‘yes’ to abundance. Saying ‘yes’ to an abundance of being - not an abundance having a lot. It is a way of consenting inwardly in an agreeing and an inviting way. And what’s more to try to say it without reservation in quite specific circumstances and relationships - especially when I feel narrowed down and diminished.
In my own tradition we speak of this abundance as being ‘in Christ’. My Franciscan teacher, Francisco de Osuna wrote profound tomes on how we can prepare and what we may need to learn to actually bear the depth, height, breadth of abundant love. He was a great teacher in the pathways of spiritual recollection – the name for this training in ‘collecting up’ the faculties of the mind for abundant life.
This spiritual education of the loving mind begins one way or another with a serious and intentional practice of inner watching. For starters I need this to disentangle my awareness from my particular habits of mind . I personally have found the practices of Focusing to be a very skilful way of learning to be with my experience in this disentangled way. Learning Focusing has served me well as contemporary practice of ancient psychological and spiritual wisdom of the heart.
I will venture a possible inside view of Focusing in this daily prayer of invitation:
Bringing my attention inwards and dropping to what feels like a quiet centre of my awareness.
When I feel ready, silently introducing the words of invitation and consent into my awareness. Repeating them as many times as feels right .
Inviting a feeling sense of ‘ abundance’ to form in my awareness and simply seeing if something comes .
If a vague bodily feeling comes - finding a word or phrase or gesture that captures that quality.
Allowing resisting feelings and thoughts a space without getting into their story.
Noticing connections to daily life that come to mind then repeating the prayer of invitation -
‘Especially in this ...’
There is no end to what may slowly unfold.