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Switch to Forum Live View Unprogrammed Meetings
7 years ago  ::  Jun 03, 2008 - 1:58PM #1
MonicaAnne
Posts: 1
Are unprogrammed meetings similar to group meditation?
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 05, 2008 - 4:53PM #2
whitephoenix
Posts: 133
IMHO they are a form of group meditation......
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 11, 2008 - 9:00AM #3
whitephoenix
Posts: 133
What makes you think that the word 'meditation' in the OP was referring to Eastern Meditation.........anyway, in the UK there has been a history in recent years of understanding and even co-operation of practice (amalgamated gatherings) between Quaker & Buddhist groups. However, as meditation is the practice of focus, and 'centreing down' (the traditionally relished part of meeting) is when a particular level of focus is reached (focus on listening) within meeting, then yeah, meeting is A FORM of group meditation.
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 11, 2008 - 4:10PM #4
whitephoenix
Posts: 133
How do you know my name Kevin?
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 11, 2008 - 4:26PM #5
whitephoenix
Posts: 133
Ah.....QF&F. I see you're bringing the same spirit of grace you use over there to the boards over here. Yours' probably wouldn't be group meditation, just not sure why you used the word 'us' in your first post on this board.
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 12, 2008 - 2:01PM #6
BillSamuel
Posts: 23
Words . . .  They are used in different ways.  We may answer a question according to what the words mean to us, but it is possible they mean something quite different to the person posing the question.

I think there is a real sensitivity in this question, due to a feeling that some Friends may not be coming to worship seeing it as it has traditionally been seen among Friends, but rather in terms of what other groups call meditation, which is normally something distinctly different.

Unprogrammed worship is not a traditional Quaker term, and the adoption of the term by most Quakers today may contribute to confusion about what it is (the term is based on what it is not).  If we think of the traditional term of waiting worship, this is about waiting on the Lord.  Such waiting doesn't always have the calming effect which meditation is usually said to have, but may result in us being convicted of our sins and of feeling a call to a change or a ministry which may be uncomfortable for us.  Also, Friends may be called to speak vocally in meeting for worship, something which is not a part of any meditation tradition of which I am familiar.

Here's what early Friend Isaac Penington had to say:

    Our worship is a deep exercise of our spirits before the Lord, which doth not consist in an exercising the natural part or natural mind, either to hear or speak words, or in praying according to what we, of ourselves, can apprehend or comprehend concerning our needs; but we wait, in silence of the fleshly part, to hear with the new ear, what God shall please to speak inwardly in our own hearts; or outwardly through others, who speak with the new tongue, which he unlooseth, and teacheth to speak; and we pray in the Spirit, and with the new understanding, as God pleaseth to quicken, draw forth, and open our hearts towards himself.

    Thus our minds being gathered into the measure, or gift of grace, which is by Jesus Christ; here we appear before our God, and here our God, and his Christ, is witnessed in the midst of us.

    This is that gathering in the name, which the promise is to, where we meet together, waiting with one consent on the Father of life, bowing and confessing to him in the name of his Son; and that fleshly part, that fleshly understanding, that fleshly wisdom, that fleshly will, which will not bow, is chained down, and kept under by the power of life, which God stretcheth forth over it, and subdueth it by. So then, there is the sweet communion enjoyed, the sweet love flowing, the sweet peace of spirit reaped, which the Father breathes upon, and gives to his children; the sweet joy and refreshment in the Lord our righteousness, who causeth righteousness to drop down from heaven, and truth to spring up out of the earth. And so our Father is felt blessing us, blessing our land, blessing our habitations, delighting in us, and over us to do us good; and our land yields its increase to the Lord of life, who hath redeemed it, and planted the precious plants and seeds of life in it. (God's Teachings and Christ's Law Part XIII, A few Words concerning the Worship which our God hath taught us)
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 12, 2008 - 2:49PM #7
whitephoenix
Posts: 133
Hey Kevin........I was just a bit take-a-back by hoe and why you'd used my real name, but I'm over it lol. Thanks for offering to delete m8, butt don't worry, it's fine. Talking of QF&F, I couldn't ever find MfW, so I deleted my profile becuase I wasn't getting anywhere with the site, and the MfW link appeared on a screen which I didn't get when logged in!!!! Now I don't know whether to re-register or not...
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 12, 2008 - 2:01PM #8
BillSamuel
Posts: 23
Words . . .  They are used in different ways.  We may answer a question according to what the words mean to us, but it is possible they mean something quite different to the person posing the question.

I think there is a real sensitivity in this question, due to a feeling that some Friends may not be coming to worship seeing it as it has traditionally been seen among Friends, but rather in terms of what other groups call meditation, which is normally something distinctly different.

Unprogrammed worship is not a traditional Quaker term, and the adoption of the term by most Quakers today may contribute to confusion about what it is (the term is based on what it is not).  If we think of the traditional term of waiting worship, this is about waiting on the Lord.  Such waiting doesn't always have the calming effect which meditation is usually said to have, but may result in us being convicted of our sins and of feeling a call to a change or a ministry which may be uncomfortable for us.  Also, Friends may be called to speak vocally in meeting for worship, something which is not a part of any meditation tradition of which I am familiar.

Here's what early Friend Isaac Penington had to say:

    Our worship is a deep exercise of our spirits before the Lord, which doth not consist in an exercising the natural part or natural mind, either to hear or speak words, or in praying according to what we, of ourselves, can apprehend or comprehend concerning our needs; but we wait, in silence of the fleshly part, to hear with the new ear, what God shall please to speak inwardly in our own hearts; or outwardly through others, who speak with the new tongue, which he unlooseth, and teacheth to speak; and we pray in the Spirit, and with the new understanding, as God pleaseth to quicken, draw forth, and open our hearts towards himself.

    Thus our minds being gathered into the measure, or gift of grace, which is by Jesus Christ; here we appear before our God, and here our God, and his Christ, is witnessed in the midst of us.

    This is that gathering in the name, which the promise is to, where we meet together, waiting with one consent on the Father of life, bowing and confessing to him in the name of his Son; and that fleshly part, that fleshly understanding, that fleshly wisdom, that fleshly will, which will not bow, is chained down, and kept under by the power of life, which God stretcheth forth over it, and subdueth it by. So then, there is the sweet communion enjoyed, the sweet love flowing, the sweet peace of spirit reaped, which the Father breathes upon, and gives to his children; the sweet joy and refreshment in the Lord our righteousness, who causeth righteousness to drop down from heaven, and truth to spring up out of the earth. And so our Father is felt blessing us, blessing our land, blessing our habitations, delighting in us, and over us to do us good; and our land yields its increase to the Lord of life, who hath redeemed it, and planted the precious plants and seeds of life in it. (God's Teachings and Christ's Law Part XIII, A few Words concerning the Worship which our God hath taught us)
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6 years ago  ::  Oct 12, 2008 - 2:49PM #9
whitephoenix
Posts: 133
Hey Kevin........I was just a bit take-a-back by hoe and why you'd used my real name, but I'm over it lol. Thanks for offering to delete m8, butt don't worry, it's fine. Talking of QF&F, I couldn't ever find MfW, so I deleted my profile becuase I wasn't getting anywhere with the site, and the MfW link appeared on a screen which I didn't get when logged in!!!! Now I don't know whether to re-register or not...
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