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talking to myself

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personal stuff

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Impossible human situations

Impossible human situations

Impossible human situations (The Abortion Issue) The abortion question is divisive, and I approach it with a certain level of fear and trembling. It is not a simple matter at all. I have friends who are pro-choice. They focus on the mother, her plight, and wish to protect women from procedures that are illegal and perhaps a threat to their lives. I do believe that abortion is not something that will ever go away. However, there are deep moral implications when it comes to this subject. I

markdohle

markdohle

Tenderness and Relationship with God

Tenderness and Relationship with God

Tenderness and Relationship with God January 20—Le Fresne church. . . . “Don’t be afraid of being too tender. Or of saying too much to your beloved. Complain about yourself. Say to Him, ‘When will You heal me, My great friend, of this or that?’ So many things in you are unworthy of Me. Humble yourself as you think of this. Hide all your ugliness in My heart. It’s a hospital, you know, and doesn’t one sometimes come out of a hospital cured? Trust in Me with all your heart since I am your great

markdohle

markdohle

The little ones

The little ones

The little ones I believe that we are all little ones, not the childish children who rebel, but those who know of their need for grace and understand that we are called to servanthood. To seek those who are overlooked and forgotten, just as there are times when we need to be sought out, for we are all walking a path towards mystery, eternity. The more trust is embraced, chosen, and lived, the deeper we go into the heart of mankind, into the very Heart-Of-God, revealed in Jesus C

markdohle

markdohle

We Would Die of Joy

We Would Die of Joy

We Would Die of Joy   All things pass, that can be consoling, stay calm and take the next step, we have this moment then it is is gone, so important the 'now', even the bad times, especially the hard painful situations, for when present, we are face to face with the deepest mystery, revealed to us as Infinite Love, a love so profound that if we felt it for even one second in all of its power, we would die of joy.--Br.MD

markdohle

markdohle

The Fatigue/Lethargy of Life

The Fatigue/Lethargy of Life

The Fatigue/Lethargy of Life   Grace is everywhere, it can be seen working in the hearts of many men and woman, who may not have faith, but seek to relieve the suffering of those they encounter.—BrMD.   “I do not measure time as men measure it, nor do I judge the intensity of suffering as men do. I know what I am doing, even when I hide My plans from men in order to test their faith in Me, and cause that faith to grow strong and indomitable. There are, alas, many souls who, in There are,

markdohle

markdohle

I am an unprofitable servant

I am an unprofitable servant

I am an unprofitable servant This past Sunday we had our Lay Cistercians at our retreat house. It is a monthly affair. Below is a homily that he shared with the Lay Cistercians by our Fr. Cassian. He always has an interesting slant when he speaks about the parables in the Gospel. Hope you all enjoy and get something out of it.—BrMD   Homily Preached to the Lay Cistercians October 6, 2019 by Fr. Cassian OCSO I am an unprofitable servant. An unworthy servant. An unnecessary servant.

markdohle

markdohle

What we all seek

What we all seek

What we all seek   What remains after we die? Our money goes first, perhaps fought over by our loving family, or fame if we have it is soon gone, and if not what does it matter(?), a picture in a book or in many books means little when dead.   Perhaps it is the seeds planted in loving service, giving life to others producing much fruit, is what remains.   For love is what we all seek like plants rising up to the sun seeking light and warmth.-

markdohle

markdohle

Letter to Michael who died in 1958

Letter to Michael who died in 1958

Letter to Michael who died in 1958 (my little brother The most common experience for most of us, if we live long enough, is to experience the loss of loved ones, be they family, or friends. Over the last few years, my family has experienced the loss of three siblings. It is not easy, but a normal part of life. Losing a sibling at birth, and not having any experience of knowing, loving, holding, or simply being with, is something different altogether. Below is a letter I wrote to a brother who

markdohle

markdohle

Holy Feast of St. Therese 2019

Holy Feast of St. Therese 2019

Holy Feast of St. Therese 2019 Only God can see what is in the bottom of our hearts; we are half-blind.—St. Therese of Lisieux Two great sins that are very common, so common in fact that they are taken lightly. Something is sinful when we fail to love as commanded by our Lord. It is something that we do to ourselves, and along with it comes a self-wounding that leads to alienation from ourselves, others, and sadly in the end, if allowed to grow in our souls, from God. Self-hatred leads t

markdohle

markdohle

Choas/Life/Faith

Choas/Life/Faith

Chaos /life/faith Faith can be bare-boned at times, with trust being the only operative ingredient working. Chaos seems to be part of life, though if I had my way I would do away with that. Then again, I feel if that wish came true, perhaps I would disappear, or just become flat, like a lake with no ripples; for struggles seems to be needed by our species. Like the salmon striving to go upstream to breed, so we do the same, often for reasons that are veiled. An inner compass guides me, and I

markdohle

markdohle

A  day out with Luke

A day out with Luke

I wrote this ten years ago. A very beautiful memory about a day I spent with Fr. Luke, and a visit with Claire a dear friend, and a very funny lady. To spend time with her is to lalugh.--BrMD   A  day out with Luke Took Luke, who is 96 years old, to see a good friend yesterday, I combine trips, he had a dentist appointment, and Clair lives 15 miles away, she loves Luke very much, which is not hard to do, he is a gentle soul, always smiling and helps to take care of people 30

markdohle

markdohle

What is real, and most important in our lives

What is real, and most important in our lives

What is real, and most important in our lives?   January 13—Le Fresne church. I said, “Truth, I adore You.” “Yes, I am Truth. Sin is falsehood, error, darkness. “Every form of goodness is truth: the desire for good, work for justice . . . You will see later that only one thing matters and that is truth, for God alone matters. Attach no importance whatsoever to anything apart from Me, however pleasing it may be. Happiness is found in Me alone. “When I created man I placed deep within him a s

markdohle

markdohle

A convict with a sexual abuse past

A convict with a sexual abuse past

A convict with a rough background (Sexual Abuse)   Most people, I believe, have a rough background, or at least a period of time when things were not optimal for healthy growth. For some, it can be a lifetime of living with their chaotic past, which can actually be generational. That is, passed on from one generation to the next. For others, it can be from being in a home that is temporary, like many foster homes. While there are most likely many foster parents, perhaps the majority, that

markdohle

markdohle

A beautiful Chapter-A talk on the common will

A beautiful Chapter-A talk on the common will

A beautiful Chapter (A talk on the common will in Monastic Life) Br. Philip, our Sub-Prior gave us this chapter talk this last Sunday. I found it extremely well done, as well as insightful. I would like to share it with my friends. Any path that seeks to lead us deeper into union with the Divine Will, is by that very fact counter-cultural and will be often misunderstood. However, as the saying goes, the proof is in the pudding. To live deeply one’s faith, no matter the vocation will draw

markdohle

markdohle

The Struggle with Evil

The Struggle with Evil

This weekend Br. Cassian asked me to give a talk on the working of the Holy Spirit in the world and evil. Since my world for almost 50 years has been living in a monastic world, that was the only world I could speak on. Below are some thoughts on the subject.   Monastic life and the Holy Spirit (the struggle with evil)   The Good Zeal Of Monks (The Rule Of St. Benedict – Chapter 72)   Just as there is a wicked zeal of bitterness which separates from God and leads to hell, s

markdohle

markdohle

In consolation or desolation, trust in God

In consolation or desolation, trust in God

In consolation or desolation, we are called to trust Adore Me is to give Me the freedom to act within you and upon you   Monday, September 5, 2011: There is no need to force your prayer, as if it were something of your own doing. It is enough to remain with Me, content to be in My presence as I am content to be in yours. Adore Me and trust Me to restore your energy, your health, and your joy in My service. Those who adore Me know that My presence renews the soul and the body. Experience th

markdohle

markdohle

The Exultation of the Cross feast day

The Exultation of the Cross feast day

The Exultation of the Cross feast day Preached September 14, 2019, Fr. Cassian OCSO.".   "Make a saraph and mount it on a pole, and if any who have been bitten look at it, they will live." And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life." Here we are given an example of how scripture reverberates with scripture. Seeking these scriptural reverberations was the preferred method of exeges

markdohle

markdohle

She talked about time in Rwanda

She talked about time in Rwanda

She talked about her time in Rwanda   A kind, peaceful looking woman, not one to draw attention to herself, spoke to our group for a few minutes, a very powerful presentation given in a soft, gentle, even, loving voice.   She talked about her time in Rwanda, she was a member of the Tutsi tribe, she went through hell, lost most of her family.   She hid with a few young family members, children, her nephew was almost thrown into the river, yet she said they were spared.   She praye

markdohle

markdohle

A case of self-deliverance (healing

A case of self-deliverance (healing

A case of self-deliverance (healing) The struggle with fear can be one that is hidden from others. It can happen when alone, really alone, like on a country road in the country with no one within miles. A good friend of mine related this story to me” She was going to a church in the country here in Georgia for a talk. The road was a dirt road, no street lights, and no homes within sight. It was then that she suddenly started to become filled with fear. It was so bad that she felt almost

markdohle

markdohle

The challenge that fear presents

The challenge that fear presents

The challenge that fear presents     Fear is a gift, like all emotions and feelings,   If we listen to what is being presented to us it can lead to greater freedom, and healing.   To fear what can hurt or kill us is of course wise, yet irrational fear, mistaken as real, can lead to an inner prison.   Harmful cycles in our lives have a life of their own, always ending in the same situation of pain, fear, and depression. They wrap us in inner chains and drag us.down.   If we do no

markdohle

markdohle

Stepping over the wall of fear

Stepping over the wall of fear

Stepping over the wall of fear Fear is a great gift given to us to help us stay alive in a world where anything can happen in an instant. Rational fears need to be listened to and followed. It is irrational fears that can cause havoc in life. We can freeze, almost go into a fetal position on an emotional level, and be undone. Often over things that are not that big of a threat, or what is being asked of us, that is in reality life-affirming. It is possible for people to allow fear to so d

markdohle

markdohle

Called to break the chains

Called to break the chains

Called to break the chains Fear is here to protect us, to give a warning about danger, however, sometimes fear can be too protective and cut us off from life. Some fears need to be heeded, others to be worked on and passed over, for like overprotective parents some fears can imprison us. We are called to break the chains of the sins others have done against us, so that we may be healers instead of hurters--Br.Md  

markdohle

markdohle

Racing thoughts

Racing thoughts

Racing thoughts   When compulsive thoughts seem to rule, a short phrase for prayer will help, gently said, slowly, without rush, when racing thoughts intrude with a calm spirit remember your prayer, a real prayerful thought freely said, lovingly from the heart, will slowly displace the impersonal racing tapes and movies in one's head,.   Be patient, in time the heart will pray, the reality of Christ Presence will become real, and while there is a struggle, slowly healin

markdohle

markdohle

You will get through this

You will get through this

You will get through this Nothing in life is permanent, neither the good times, nor the bad, each has a season, one pleasant, the other hell-like, anxiety-driven, yet it passes. We are called to be faithful 'this day', or even this one moment, for free choices no matter how small have great significance. Moments are steps we take, each leading to the next, there is no middle ground, we are going forward or backward, so yes life is a struggle,

markdohle

markdohle

Death and Dying 5 insights: by Dorthy Day

Death and Dying 5 insights: by Dorthy Day

Five Insights From Dorothy Day on Death and Dying   We all know that our time is at a premium, yet how do we spend our time? I would think that if we really believed that our lives continue after we 'die', it would spur us to seek to deepen our understanding of life's journey. Do we have an immortal soul, and or we responsible for the kind of people we become? To say we sin means that we can choose otherwise, though the death to self is difficult, achieved by grace.   If God is love, then ar

markdohle

markdohle