Hedwig Lewis SJ
The Principle and Foundation and Contemplation to Attain Love are the overture and finale respectively of Ignatius’ orchestration of divine-human movements in the Exercises. The composition is “uplifting” – literally – from “i” to “YOU”.
The P-F begins with what “I ought to desire” – namely, harmony between God, Creation, and humankind. I order my life according to the divine rhythm. I stay attuned to what synchronizes with the divine purpose of my life, and exercise “passionate indifference” to whatever causes dissonance within and without.
The Contemplation is a “symphony” in four movements: God’s gift to me: my birth, family, personality, talents… (I sing of God’s graciousness). God’s self-giving: God’s empowering presence… (I join in the hymn to Creation). God’s ongoing labours… (As co-creator, I strive to create harmony). God’s unconditional self-giving love… (My life is but a song of love and service). The Exercises break into a crescendo in “Take and Receive”.
Like a musical instrument, I surrender myself entirely in the hands of my Maker. I let HIS music vibrate in my memory, understanding and will. I dance to God’s tune! Dance, because my surrender is joyful and liberating. I inspire others to become God’s partners – and dance.