I Heard It Through the Bovine

ruminationsRuminations
is the name we have given to a
[free, downloadable]
quarterly/seasonal offering
of Zoe-Life Explorations. 

Its aim reflects our mission:
facilitating
conversations
and reflections
about spiritual formation.

The title derives
from the process
which is a cow chewing its cud.
Writes Rick Warren –
acknowledging the association
between the word and meditation:

What does it mean to meditate on God’s Word? If we look up the word meditation in a dictionary, we find that a synonym is the word rumination. Rumination is what a cow does when she chews her cud. A cow eats some grass, chews up all she can, then swallows it. It sits in one of her stomachs for a while, and then a little bit later she burps it up — with renewed flavor. The cow chews on it some more and swallows it again. This continues for all four stomachs. That’s rumination. The cow is straining every ounce of nourishment from the grass. Meditation is thought digestion. Meditation does not mean that you put your mind in neutral and think about nothing.

“Swallows it… and burps it up”:
Not the most appealing imagery,
I will grant you.

And yet, the larger concept has a way of defining our intentions in the meditative resource which is Ruminations.  Here, we hope to provide individuals and groups with a guide for retreats and devotion.  It’s not a single serving!  It’s not meant to be engaged and exhausted in one sitting.  Think of it as a haystack–offering a chance for multiple opportunities to chew on a topic across a season.

Even so with our Lenten issue
which we just released—
available by clicking here.
“Desert Spirituality” is its focus—
acknowledging the ways that the wilderness
is a focal image throughout the Scriptures offering,
affirming the lonely and silent and unpredictable places of our lives as good fodder for our spiritual formation.

Four pages long:
* an introductory overview
* five readings from various sources on the subject
* a final page of suggested exercises and recommended readings

It’s our hope that you’ll find it mooving…
and udderly meaningful.
(Sorry, I couldn’t resist!)

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