Seeing Reality: The Contemplative Outlook

Video 2

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God invites us to see ourselves, others, and the world differently. Learn what it means to cultivate a contemplative posture of heart that sees God present in all creation.

Scripture for Reflection

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)

“‘What do you want me to do for you?’ Jesus asked him. The blind man said, ‘Rabbi, I want to see.’ ‘Go,’ said Jesus, ‘your faith has healed you.’ Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.” (Mark 10:51-52)

Reflection Questions 

  1. Was there a word, phrase, or idea that resonated with me? That was new to me?
  2. In the video, one woman shares, “I'm thankful for those who believed in me even when I didn't believe in myself, and I'm grateful for those who saw the good in me, even when I couldn't see the good in myself." How do I see myself? When are times when I have struggled to see my own goodness? What does it mean for me to see myself as a gift, as a beloved child of God? 
  3. Is there a moment in my life when someone truly saw me and believed in me? How did this experience affect me?
  4. Are there ways in which I am tempted to see others as a burden? As competitors? As a threat? As unworthy? How do I want to ask God to heal my vision?
  5. What do the words “encounter,” “dialogue,” and “solidarity” stir up in me? 
  6. Is my interior posture one of receiving others or do I try to control situations and those around me? What helps me give others, creation, and God the space to unfold and be discovered?
  7. In what moments has the beauty of life captured my heart? How can I cultivate an awareness of the presence of God in my daily life? 
  8. Is there a fruit from my prayer that I would like to share with others? 

Discussion Questions

  1. Is there a fruit from your prayer that you would like to share with others?
  2. Sister Mariae Agnus Dei, SV says, “We want to be able to look at each woman and see, not a project nor a task to be accomplished nor an argument to be won, nor even a baby to be saved, but first and foremost, as a person, a daughter, made in the image and likeness of God, sacred, good, with dignity and a destiny.” Discuss this. How does this give you a new understanding of what it means to serve a pregnant woman? 
  3. St. John Paul II defines “the contemplative outlook” as “being able to discover in all things the reflection of the Creator and seeing in every person his living image" (Evangelium Vitae, §83). He invites us to see others in a new way. How are you able to see others in this light? What about those with whom you disagree or those who you may be tempted to see as unworthy? Are there ways in which this is difficult?
  4. In Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life), St. John Paul II also writes that the contemplative “outlook does not give in to discouragement when confronted by those who are sick, suffering, outcast or at death's door. Instead, in all these situations it feels challenged to find meaning, and precisely in these circumstances it is open to perceiving in the face of every person a call to encounter, dialogue and solidarity" (§83). How might embracing a contemplative outlook change the way you encounter people? 


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