IM24 SONG OF THE SENSES

A five-day spiritual sensorium with the Ignatian ‘Prayer of the Senses’.
Grounded in body prayer and an imaginative contemplation, it has a form and purpose of its own.

Found in the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius, this way of praying is relevant and transformative for
those who care for our common home, the earth and its peoples.

Held online in May 2024, with recordings and resources now available for purchase

Experience five new spiritual Ignatian exercises, learn five different Ignatian prayer methods, get ready for five hundredfold graces.

Each session revels in a different sense:

SIGHT              Sunday 5 May
TOUCH            Monday 6 May
SCENT              Tuesday 7 May
HEARING         Wednesday 8 May
TASTE              Thursday 9 May

Purchase Recordings and Resources here for downloading.

What is the Prayer of the Senses?

The Prayer of the Five Senses is one of five daily exercises in the thirty-day retreat of St Ignatius. It is also used in the First Method of Prayer found at the end of that retreat.

It is akin to Ignatian body prayer and imaginative contemplation, but while using both, is different in focus and method. It uses the five senses as ‘interior senses’, experienced in both simile and metaphor, drawing on the gospels and life story of the one praying.

But for all that, it is a simple prayer method, easily learnt, deeply grounded and effective in developing an intimate relationship with Jesus, the Creator and Spirit.

What makes the Prayer of the Five Senses wonderfully grounding is that it draws directly on our memories and feelings – so our life story, with all its ups and downs, our scarred and precious body, is truly honoured and integrated in a new way. We are refreshed.

This is both liberating and enjoyable because it makes us more human and feel whole.

Lifestyle and daily demands can separate us from our bodies and even feelings, leaving us living in our heads, often removed from nature. The Prayer of the Senses reconnects body and soul, feelings and intellect, Creator, creature, and creation.

Like the movement to return farmed nature to its wild and generative state, this prayer will affect a re-wilding of our faith life.

Purchase Recordings and Resources here for downloading.

A unique and rarely seen focus on the mysterious Prayer of the Five Senses of St Ignatius Loyola in his Spiritual Exercises.

What can I look forward to?

In our convocation, an event that gathers voices, each session will focus on one sense, to grow our awareness of it, explore it, and pray with it using the Prayer of the Senses.

Each session will guide us through three sensual spiritual exercises, show expressions of the sense in video, and offer a presentation by a person who uses that sense in their work.

So over five days, you will meet an artist, a physiotherapist, a creator of essential oils, a wine maker, and a music composer.

Throughout, as one online organic community, we will often break into small groups for spiritual conversation with the national and international friends who have joined IM24.

Purchase Recordings and Resources here for downloading.

Daily Session Outline

  • My Favourite Sense
  • Ex 1. Awareness of my Senses
  • Ex 2. Living with a Sense of Jesus
  • Group Spiritual Conversation
  • Reflecting on the Senses (Video)

Break

  • Working with the Senses (Key Speaker)
  • Ex 3. Living with a Sense of Creation
  • Group Spiritual Conversation
  • Our Spiritual Senses

Daily Session Dynamic – In Detail

The dynamic of each session begins with my favourite experience of a sense and then moves into a deepening awareness of that sense. With this new awareness, I am then invited into a special relationship with Jesus, using that sense to pray.

Now settled in my interior faith life, I rest awhile to enjoy a song or poem of the sense, have a break, then listen to one who works creatively with the sense, like an artist or composer.

Next I move from interior consciousness to exterior consciousness. In a prayer unlike any other, in a conference of created things and creatures, I will listen to creation and hear its creatures tell me what they think I need to know in these days.

In all, I will use a spiritual journal, my Listening Book, for each spiritual exercise, so by the end of the convocation, after fifteen exercises, I will have a powerful record of the way the Spirit is working in me, a wealth of discerned graces, and a take-home guide for the future.

Furthermore, in a deep relationship with God and creation, I will have fully mastered a new way of praying, the Ignatian Prayer of the Five Senses, ready for the rest of my life.

So from sensual awareness to intimate relationship with Jesus to transforming relationship with creation – this will be our daily journey through the five senses.

Purchase Recordings and Resources here for downloading.

Enjoy the rich dynamic of the ‘Song of the Senses:

Heightened awareness of my senses

Using my senses to make good decisions

In depth learning about my senses

Intimacy with Jesus through my sense

Eco-conversion through my senses

Is this for me?

If you are interested in learning about Ignatian Spirituality, teach or use it professionally, or if you live and love it…

You will learn more about Ignatian Spirituality in these five days than reading a handful of books because this event is spirituality inside-out.

We will learn by prayer, spiritual conversations, and our own life experiences.

Blessed are the eyes that see what you see! For I tell you that many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it. Luke 10:23-24

Purchase Recordings and Resources here for downloading.

Hosted by JISA’s First Spiritual Exercises
and Being with God in Nature ministries