‘If memories of past actions keep coming between you and God’, says the author of The Cloud of Unknowing, ‘you are resolutely to step over them because of your deep love for God’.
In prayer we come to a deeper awareness of God in Christ. Our way is the way of silence. The way to silence is the way of the mantra.
The venerable tradition of the mantra in Christian prayer is above all attributable to its utter simplicity. It answers all the requirements of the masters’ advice on how to pray because it leads us to a harmonious, attentive stillness of mind, body and spirit. It requires no special talent or gift apart from serious intent and the courage to persevere.
‘No one’, Cassian said, ‘is kept away from purity of heart by not being able to read, nor is rustic simplicity any obstacle to it for it lies close at hand for all if only they will by constant repetition of this phrase keep the mind and heart attentive to God’.
Our mantra is the ancient Aramaic prayer, ‘Maranatha, Maranatha’. ‘Come Lord. Come Lord Jesus’.
John Mann, Word into Silence