It is not “Russia” that Our Blessed Mother Mary speaks about to the children at Fatima, and ultimately you and I, but the athiestic enslavement of materialism and capitalism that
boggles the mind and tangles the heart. It is easy to get caught up in it if we are not conscious of its traps. The allure of more and better things, the latest electronic gadget, iphone, ipad, clothing, housing, trips, and oh yes, shopping can fill the heart with promises that in the end, can leave us more empty than when we began filling up our cart, head or house. Peace is not to be found in the accumulation of things. This we already know. Yet in our day-to-day living, we can find ourselves substituting materialistic and consumer gain, in place of meditation, prayer and life choices of substance. We can break free of our addictions to materialism and capitalism first by becoming aware of them, then making decision that simplify and prioritize our lives. It is important to balance our quiet side of ourselves by prayer and meditation, harmonizing our spiritual selves with our physical and mental selves, in a conscious way. Taking time out each day, 15-20 minutes, earmarked only for prayer, with the cell phone off, door closed, is the only way to carve out sacred time and sacred space.Lately, we’ve been discussing the Rosary as a prayer and meditation practice, that makes for a perfect mantra, while elevating our thoughts to the mysteries of Jesus in our lives today. In prayer, and with the Divine, there is no time or separation, so our prayers occur in same time/real time communication, no division between us and God. For example, let’s focus our attention on the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary. In the first decade, picture yourself seated on the stonewall near Our Blessed Mother Mary. Perhaps the both of you were just speaking before the angel Gabriel appears to her. You see this beautiful bright angel, in all his glory, telling Mary that she has been chosen to be the Jesus’ mother, and all that entails. You witness Archangel Gabriel’s arrival and departure. You are present for a very special interaction between Heaven and Earth. In the second decade, as you continue to pray along the beads, you meditate on the visitation, when Mary is now in her third trimester carrying baby Jesus in her womb. She travels to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who is ready to deliver John and Baptist in the next three months. You help with the preparations, the meals, and join in the conversations these two women had, as they marvel over both of their prophesied children. The third decade brings you as an active participant to the manger scene at Christmas. Perhaps you help find Mary and Joseph a comfortable place to stay where Jesus is to be born. It is no small task to find room for Jesus in your heart. You go out of your way to help bring comfort in a time of confusion at the delivery time of Jesus simultaneously at the same time of the census. Your prayers and meditation continues in the fourth decade where you are present at the Temple, hearing first hand the prophesies of Simone and Anna, when Mary and Joseph bring the baby for the Presentation in the Temple, the time when they declare the baby’s name will be Jesus. You remember that the angel Gabriel told Mary that would be the baby’s name, and you smile.The last decade prayers find you watching Jesus, at 12 years of age, discussing the Torah in the Temple, and what was meant by the scriptures, the deeper meanings of what was meant, especially how not to worship idols, and not to make idols out of our faith. You see how even materialism and capitalism can be a form of idol worship, where things take the place of God in the heart.
The Rosary comes to an end. But the age old Rosary, given to us by Our Blessed Mother Mary, is just as powerful a weapon for peace, balance and harmony in our lives yesterday, today and tomorrow.