Poverty of Spirit

Poverty of Spirit

Poverty of spirit is a manger of gentle receptivity which allows the Divine to be born within us. To be wholly present to God, with all of our heart, mind and soul, we must be poor in spirit.

Poverty of spirit is far more than material poverty. While material poverty may help to facilitate poverty of spirit, it is nonetheless important to realize that a person without possessions can still be possessed by a craving for things. It is the craving that makes us restless, distracting our hearts and minds from being present to God alone. Poverty of spirit frees us from being divided by false idols and uncurbed passions.

Poverty of spirit does not refer to an economic condition. It reflects the human reality that we are poor before God and we need to radically depend on God alone for true fulfillment.

We must be on guard not to confuse the necessities of life with what is luxurious. The humble simplicity that embodies poverty of spirit stands in stark contrast with the unbridled pursuit of comfort, power, pleasure and riches which permeates a society that prizes possessions as a good in itself.

Poverty of spirit is a means of maintaining a continual attitude of dying to self without succumbing to self-hatred or causing a lack of self-esteem. We need to die to self because it is the only way to be fully alive to God.

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