Pauca Verba is Latin for A Few Words.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

How Not To Hate People ~ The Hilandar Mother of God






This is the wonder-working icon of the Mother of God venerated at the Serbian Hilandar Monastery at Mount Athos in Greece. The monastery was founded by Saint Sava in 1198. Today there are about 45 monks living, praying and working there.

She is very beautiful, isn't she, in her morning sky-colors? Perhaps she portends for us the new and personal dawning of non-hate. Hate doesn't necessarily mean, "I want you dead." Hate means strong feelings against or about someone. We should really stop denying that hate ever finds its way into our lives.

Jesus knew our capacity for hate. In fact, Jesus would say that the real problem today is not sexual things, but that there is so much hate. No one is untouched. To understand, we just have to watch some political news, Judge Judy or Dr. Phil or pay more attention to our thoughts throughout the day. But Jesus tells us that landing in hate is not allowed: that we must get free of it as quickly as possible.

So come before the Hilandar Mother of God, who feeds the Holy Child, and who wants us nourished in kindness and compassion. She doesn't look at Jesus, but at each of us. She knows. She understands that humanity is plagued by negativity, prejudice, stewing in resentment, revenge and hate. 

Coming before the icon, mention the names of every person you feel some negativity towards: the crazy-makers, troublemakers, the jealous colleague or relative, the one who disappoints, the invaders and intruders, the ones who are too needy, demanding or who steal away your energies, the show-offs and argue-ers, the whiners. You name it...

And then after each name simply pray: Oh, Hilandar Mother of God, give her what she needs for salvation.  Oh, Hilandar Mother of God, give him what he needs for salvation. Oh, Hilandar Mother of God, give them what they need for salvation.

This is a wonder-working prayer. It has the power to steal away hate and negativity. And like the cold or flu medicine advertised on TV - take this spiritual medicine at the first sign of negative, resentful or hateful feelings. 






15 comments:

  1. Steal away not only my resentments, O Mother of God, but also the resentments of those that fill our lives with hate. Less hate would mean a better world. I try to teach my children to have only love inside of them, but the media shows them that the world is filled with misplaced resentments and hatred for others.

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  2. It is a wonder working prayer. I believe in it.

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  3. What we do in life, echoes in eternity. Let us let go of our hatreds and embrace our differences. Thank you for the lessons Father.

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  4. Mother of God, nourish me with your love so that I may be filled with gratitude and gladness.

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  5. What a wonderful post. I have of recent become very aware of how intolerable I have become. I make a conscious effort to correct it. I am no stranger to resentment, I know how toxic it can be. Thank you again for such perfect guidance.

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  6. And thank YOU for such an honest response. This little prayer for others: give them what they need for salvation - is an act of kindness towards others. Notice this - you may very well be right in your sense of someone - he/she/they may indeed be crazy-makers, trouble-makers - but what Jesus doesn't allow is that I should become un-centered in the toxicity you suggest. When I get like that - I lose the Holy Spirit. Thanks for writing!

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  7. I know, I must practice more humility when I pray, that all people will receive what they need for salvation. Those likeable and those unlikeable. Some good thoughts here for the day.

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  8. We should all love just a little bit more. When you think you have given all the love you have, reach down deep inside, for it is endless. Just like God's love for us.

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  9. The blog here is wonderful. Everything is beautiful and the posts are full of spiritual direction. How fortunate for us that you have explored this venue and embraced a new way of teaching. I can share it with my religion classes and have had some animated discussions with them as a result.

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  10. I'm delighted to hear that the posts have found their way into religious ed classes. Tell your class that I send a blessing and encouragement. Do the students bring ipads and phones to class so you can all read the posts together and so they can see the pictures? When I was in my last parish I wrote a column for the hardcopy bulletin each week. A parishioner told me, "You're not reaching your audience; you've got to get online" and he set me up. So here we are today. How grateful I am. Where are you writing from?

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  11. It is I who am pleased and my students who are grateful for the insights that spark their thoughts.This man may have had the foresight and the ability to set you up, but you have kept it going for quite some time looking back at the archive. I will relay your blessings to my students. We are in Rockford, IL. which is not so very far away.

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  12. Starlight, Pennsylvania (where this retreat house is) is in the most far north-east corner of the state, on the Delaware River bordering New York. Pennsylvania is a big state east to west. Then across a tiny sliver of West Virginia, then into and across Ohio and Indiana and then Illinois. I have fun finding out where page view folks are from. The second largest audience for Pauca Verba posts is RUSSIA! How about that!

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  13. Why is it that some people can carry on in the most cheerful of ways, with never a complaint nor a negative word towards others, while most people harbor negativity and resentments? I will try praying for a brighter outlook on things, and hope this wonder working resentment prayer takes root in me.

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  14. I don't know, I wonder about that often myself. Maybe it's just Original Sin: that from the start, something has gone very wrong. Like going on a long trip and taking a wrong turn - before GPS of course. Still, Brother Roger of Taize said: "Stay close to the fire, which is Christ, and eventually even the thorns of your life will burst into flame." Let us pray for each other.

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  15. I don't know, I wonder about that often myself. Maybe it's just Original Sin: that from the start, something has gone very wrong. Like going on a long trip and taking a wrong turn - before GPS of course. Still, Brother Roger of Taize said: "Stay close to the fire, which is Christ, and eventually even the thorns of your life will burst into flame." Let us pray for each other.

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