The inspiration for this Sunday’s service comes from a beautiful hymn we look forward to singing together during the service: “Still, still with Thee, when purple morning breaketh." In my mind this phrase has an interesting and inspiring double connotation. Does it mean that whatever befalls us in life God is always (still) with us? Or does it mean that in calmness (stillness) we realize the presence of God? Does it refer to the idea that “if I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there." (Psalm 139:8)? Or, to the sage guidance given in Psalm 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God.”?
What is single-pointed concentration? How can it be achieved? If your work is all-absorbing and you put your body, mind and heart into it, the result is complete self-dedication. In such dedication, time and effort are practically unknown. The practice becomes timeless and effortless. When attachment and worry are present, time can be experienced as long and the effort difficult. But when the devotee sees only the source of devotion, there is no other desire than to keep the spotlight of the mind ever focused on that source.