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The Dark Night of the Soul

Discussion in 'On prayer itself' started by padraig, Jan 1, 2017.

  1. padraig

    padraig New Member


    There is an old saying that, 'The Hand that hurts if the Hand that heals'. I think this is from the profession of surgeons who have to cut and cut deep in order to bring about healing. This would have been even more so in the days before anaethetics.


    The Lord God is the Divine Surgeon and administers his medicine as and when folks need need it. We all need good swift kicks up the ass at some stage in our lives, let's face it and God is not slow to give us one as I am sure everyone who reads this will attest too.:D:D

    For some folks , though kicks up the ass, with whatever Divine Force they are given just won;t do the buisness. Some people have to be dragged outside by the Holy Spirit and the Ministering Angels and beaten half senseless and left bleeding by the road side before they get even a glimmer of a little sense. :D Even then it may be that many more good beating are in order to effect a change for the better.

    If you read the life of the Blessed Bartolo Longo..ex Satanist , you see one such soul:

    http://motheofgod.com/threads/blessed-bartolo-longo.10073/#post-159358

    St Paul of Tarsus was another. Note that when Jesus met up with Paul on the Road to Damscus , Jesus said to Paul, 'It is hard for you to kick against the goad'. Now a goad was a stick you beat the animal with. So what Jesus was saying is , 'I have kicked your ass for you and its done some good. Now I am really going to kick your ass for you and it's going to do you a whole lot of good'.:D:D

    So poor old Paul was left in a heap on the ground and blinded for good measure. A real beating.

    I remember when I was at school I was a big trouble maker and nearly got expelled more than once. But I remember what the head master, a De La Salle Brother said to me on the last day. He said to me, 'Padraig in my experience at this job it is only the ones who cause us trouble that ever amount to very much'.



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  2. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I must admit to having a huge fondness for the very great sinners for these , when and if they convert, tend to be the very greatest of saints.

    You know in the Middle Ages Mary Magdalen was taken to be the very greatest of the saints. Why did they think like this? Well they reckoned, as Jesus said , that because she ahd been forgiven much she loved much and since she was the greatest of sinners she much have been the greatest of the saints.

    We tend not to think like this nowadays, but I think the argument has a lot of merit.

    Matthew 21:31

    The Parable of the Two Sons
    …30Then the man went to the second son and told him the same thing. ‘I will, sir,’ he said. But he did not go. 31Which of the two did the will of his father?” “The first,” they answered. Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God before you. 32For John came to you in a righteous way and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.…

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  3. padraig

    padraig New Member

    So in the Land of the Cross, in the terrible place of suffering we see things turned upside down from the Way of this World. It is the saints who suffer most. The Little Ones, the Forgotten ones the Children of God Nailed to the Cross for our joint Redemption:

    Colossians 1:24

    Now I rejoice in what I am suffering for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church.


    http://www.mysticsofthechurch.com/2009/11/blessed-alexandrina-da-costa-mystic-and.html

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  4. padraig

    padraig New Member

    She lived the Passion of Jesus

    Alejandrina experienced 180 ecstasies of the Passion, preceded by many hours of fear and horror as midday of Good Friday approached. This fear was generally accompanied by an intense sadness, nausea, and a strong sensation of loneliness.

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    For seven years she was unable to forget her first crucifixion. She wrote: " All seemed to be present before me, I felt the fear and horror of those bitter hours, the anxiety of my spiritual director at my side, and my family in tears and horrified." Minutes after midday on October 3rd, 1938, Our Lord invited Alejandrina to immerse herself in His Passion: "See, my daughter, Calvary is ready, do you accept?" Alejandrina courageously accepted. Witnesses held their breath while she was in ecstasy. Even though she was paralyzed, she would recover movement in her body and almost levitated from her bed with the same movements of Jesus in the Agony of the Garden of Olives to Calvary.

    Images of the ecstasy of the Passion were filmed forming an important part of her beatification process.

    At the end of one of her ecstasies at 3:00 pm, Alejandrina raised her arms in thanksgiving and exhausted in horror, she immediately cried: "No, Jesus, no, Jesus, crucify me !! Forgive, forgive, forgive !!! They have the same right as I have, you died on the cross for them, like you did for me. Jesus I don’t want any soul to go to hell. I love you for them. Forgive them Jesus, remember me in my crucifixion. Hell is the worst place." This dialogue reminds us of Saint Gemma Galgani, a mystic of the end of the 19th century.

    A few days later, Alejandrina suffered terrible pain, she vomited blood and was tortured by an unquenchable thirst. Water was not enough; she was unable to swallow a drop of water. She started to perceive the strong odor of sin: "they were repulsive odors," she related in her autobiography. "Perfumes and violets were brought to me, but I rejected them because I was still tormented by this vile odor. Just to remember these things make me suffer."

    Blessed Alexandrina De Costa
     
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  5. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I think in many ways, if we have compassion , it is much harder to bear the sufferings of others, than it is our own. This is because God makes the back for the burden. This is because it is their sufferings not ours and God provides them with the graces they need for the Cross they are presented with. In order to obtain such graces we must pray for them, for in praying for them we know the jewels of Wisdom we receive and do not take them for granted.

    I remember going into a children's hospice for the dying one time , it was a therapy room fitted out with beautiful lights like a large disco and soothing music. But the state of the children I saw shook me. I cannot imagine how it moved their poor parents. But great sufferings our own and those of others should shake us, other wise were is our heart. Not only move our hearts but melt them in the image of the risen Christ.

    Of all things it is the sufferings of the innocent ones that I find moves me to melting tears. I remember one time driving pass the University here and a vehicle in front hit a dog which fell to the ground. The dog after a few moments rose from the ground and ..I can only call it screaming ran off into the darkened streets. The foundations of my Faith shook beneath me. I have such a love for dogs in particular. But it when our eyes are wet with tears, it is when some little Earthquakes shakes us to Foundations that we are remade.

    God enlarges our compassion , makes our hearts stretch to enfold the entire world , so that like St Francis we find the flowers, the trees, the birds and fish our sisters and brothers.

    I remember one time someone who visited heaven in a near death experience described how, when he stood on the grass, the very grasses sang and made music.

    I can well believe this.

    For we given the grace of compassion through great suffering, , the whole world becomes

    this little girl in red.

     
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  6. Mario

    Mario Powers

    God enlarges our compassion , makes our hearts stretch to enfold the entire world , so that like St Francis we find the flowers, the trees, the birds and fish our sisters and brothers.

    Enlarge my compassion, sweet Jesus!

    Safe in the Refuge of the Immaculate Heart!
     
  7. Julia

    Julia Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us.

    Because we live in this valley of tears, it seems that suffering is an inevitable part of our journey.

    Suffering it seems can come in the form or 'mental,' 'physical,' 'spiritual' or 'emotional.' And the amazing thing is we are free to choose to unite our sufferings with the sufferings of Jesus, and Mary who suffered to see her Son suffer on account of our sinful nature.

    When we unite sufferings with Jesus, He blesses them and uses them for conversions and other benefits for all souls. IMHO.
    We are free to acknowledge suffering in ourselves and this leaves those sufferings wasted in the Mystical body of Christ, until and if we find the courage to unite or offer then to Jesus. IMHO.

    Oh my God, I offer Thee the joys and sorrows of this day.

    Oh most Sacred Heart of Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer Thee the prayers, good works and sufferings of this day. In reparation for all the sins and offences against Thy most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Amen

    With these little words, Jesus can turn all our daily efforts and failures into graces for souls. Praise God.
     
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  8. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I think one of the mistakes I keep making over and over again with suffering, hardship and prayer and one I guess I will keep making over and over again till the day I die is this:

    That I suppose when I am happy and upbeat and pray that I have prayed, 'Well' , whereas if I am tried, hungry, upset preoccupied , I have prayed, 'Badly'.

    In fact the exact opposite is the case. Prayer is simply love in action. Love if gifting of oneself to the other. The more I struggle through the darkness surrounding me to pray the greater it is an act of love. The candle glows brighter so to speak the greater the darkness.


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  9. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I think a good example of this often rests with our Evangelical sisters and brothers in this. I recall just a year or two into the Dark Night and things were black as black as could be . So I decided to drive to the sea side one day to cheer myself up a little. There was an Evangelical Preacher there , talking at the beach and after he was finished I had the crazy thought to go up to him to see if he has any scriptural words of cheer. After describing how down in the dumps I felt he closely questioned me about what Church I went to ? When he discovered I was Catholic he gave a triumphant shout. Aha! That was it , I was not a Christian! Christians were always, always happy! I needed to become a Christian then I would be happy again!

    Ugh ! As you can well imagine this did nothing to cheer me up:)

    This reminds me of when I was a young atheist but unhappy in another way. They was a young very happy Evangelical fellow worker called Jim. He talked me into going to a Church home meeting. I was stunned by how happy they all were.

    About twenty years later I met Jim again and he looked anything but happy. I asked him why and he told me he had totally loose this Faith. I think the reason why many Evangelicals loose this Faith is over this question of being happy. They feel that being happy is part of the Faith deal. Then if they are not happy at times (and how could the not be?)..their Faith takes a beating.

    It seems to me that the Catholic Faith and Spirituality is much more at home with taking a beating. We kinda naturally take this as par for the course. But still there is a very natural inclination to think in prayer that being happy in prayer means being successful in prayer. I suspect we all do this. But true happiness runs deep. It is not always smiley clappy. True happiness runs deep, deep, deep.

    John 14:27

    Peace I Leave with You
    26But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have told you. 27Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled; do not be afraid. 28You heard Me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I.…

    I think the American Evangelist Joel Osteen is a good example of the misunderstanding many people have in this regard:

    upload_2017-1-11_6-50-19.jpeg


     
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  10. HeavenlyHosts

    HeavenlyHosts Principalities

    This is a great thread. I have been awakened in my understanding to some of the depths of evil in our world today. I am talking about people who worship Satan and Lucifer and who hurt children as part of their bargain. I have gotten innuendoes of this in my neighborhood. I have had Masses said and I have the Carmelites praying for the evil to be driven out of my neighborhood. A priest recommended having Masses said. Our Lord and Our Lady have been asking us to offer up our sufferings for so long. In the mystical sense, we need to keep doing that. I appreciate the fact that some sufferings are so hurtful to us and we are so tired, and I have really learned to keep leaning on the Lord. This has been expressed by you all in this thread...."No servant is greater than his Master"
    Jesus showed us the way, He was like us in all things but sin, and He has all the power, He can give us the strength to continue on, to mount up on eagle's wings....I think this intensity of our suffering is because of the intensity of the evils in the world, and the fury of the Storm. It is always darkest just before the dawn.
    I have some neighbors here who are truly evil. and the thing that floors me is that Satanism is now a recognized religion in the USA. There are many average folks out there in all walks of life who belong to this evil. Think about it next time you have dealings with people that don't seem right.
    RUN to Jesus and Mary. I look back on my life and the Lord shows me from time to time when I was up against some evil folks and He was able to keep me. Sometimes whenever I try to get something done, or some business taken care of, and it doesn't seem to go through, and I get frustrated, and I think, why doesn't someone do something to help? Well, that is probably when the block is in place by the evil ones. This is a heavy concept, but only prayer and fasting can remove some of this, and other times we have to wait on the Lord for resolution. It is so hard for me to wait on the Lord. I have waited for an answer now for a family issue for 25 years and I finally feel the answer coming soon.
    So don't give up. Persevere. Stand with Jesus and Mary. Offer it up. On the other hand, there are times when the Lord puts people in our lives and we know they are good people and they are striving for holiness, and we recognize this, or feel it. So this is truly our journey. "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil, Thy rod and thy staff comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my enemies."
    Sorry for rambling.
     
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  11. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I was standing in the railway station today waiting to go home. So many people! These last few years I admit I have looked at people and idly wonder, do you pray? Do you think of God? Are you going to heaven? I admit the people I work with , though good , hardworking people , they , well they throw me a lot because God is never, ever ,ever part of their conversation.

    Now it seems to me if you love something or someone they would always be on your tongue. I, for istance love dogs and always talk about them.

    Anyway the words of Jesus in the Sacred Heart Apparitions came to mind:


    "I feel this more than all that I suffered
    during My Passion. If only they would make Me
    some return for My Love, I should think but
    little of all I have done for them and would
    wish, were it possible, to suffer still more.
    But the sole return they make for all My

    eagerness to do them good is to reject Me and
    treat Me with coldness. Do you at least
    console Me by supplying for their
    ingratitude, as far as you are able."


    "Behold the Heart which has so loved men that
    it has spared nothing, even to exhausting and
    consuming Itself, in order to testify Its
    love; and in return, I receive from the

    greater part only ingratitude, by their
    irreverence and sacrilege, and by the
    coldness and contempt they have for Me in
    this Sacrament of Love. But what I feel most
    keenly is that it is hearts which are
    consecrated to Me, that treat Me thus.

    Therefore, I ask of you that the Friday after
    the Octave of Corpus Christi be set apart for
    a special Feast to honor My Heart, by
    communicating on that day, and making
    reparation to It by a solemn act, in order to
    make amends for the indignities which It has
    received during the time It has been exposed
    on the altars. I promise you that My Heart
    shall expand Itself to shed in abundance the
    influence of Its Divine Love upon those who
    shall thus honor It, and cause It to be
    honored."

    Mmm pretty grim words. I felt so sad thinking of them today.

    [​IMG]

     
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  12. HeavenlyHosts

    HeavenlyHosts Principalities

    very beautiful, good reparation!
     
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  13. Dawn2

    Dawn2 Principalities

    Wow, I was just thinking this same thing today over an issue with neighbors that seems never ending, in other words, takers never learn and they can't ever see that everyone else sees they are takers. I'm praying for them. But it gets tiring having to deal with them.
     
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  14. HeavenlyHosts

    HeavenlyHosts Principalities

    dawn2 I hear ya (n)
     
  15. Beth B

    Beth B Beth Marie


    Please God....bless grimisocks.....give him hope!
    In my prayers.......
    God surely loves you a lot....that He gives such sufferings to those He loves the most.
     
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  16. Beth B

    Beth B Beth Marie

    Ohhhhhh....this was funny....and true.
     
  17. It stings most when it is a close family member.
     
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  18. Lately, I have been finding myself thinking and reflecting a lot of different troubles in my life and how Jesus and his disciples would have manage these same type of scenarios. Just recently I have been reflecting on when my daughter was terribly ill and I was the only one that stood there with her to see her through it. I think of John standing there at the cross with Mary...alone. Where were all the others, they ran and left him to deal with all this..He set the example for me. Even after being deserted by his friends when Mary needed their help, he still went back to them and continued on. I don't know if I could have done that with out giving them all a piece of my mind. Who knows maybe he did, but I don't think so.
     
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  19. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Its the thorns that we walk on , not the roses that we lie on that will get us to heaven.

    When we get to heaven it is the ones who gave us the most the grief that we will thank the most for getting us there. Pains in the ass are our very own God given ladder to Eternity. Look at Jesus He was surrounded by pains in the butt and they ended up nailing Him to a Cross.

    The horses asses that winds up in your road through life are God's greatest gifts. Its the troubles that we are sent and the way we respond to them that will make us the saints that God intended us to be.

    So thank God for assholes.:)

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  20. You're so funny Padraig, you gave me a good chuckle.
     
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