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Imagine a new future

Posted on April 24, 2022, by JoAnn Gates

By JoAnn Gates CoL and Cathy Mueller SL

What lens can we find together to imagine and to work our way into a hopeful, peaceful future?

Elaine Prevallet SL
Photo by Jean M. Schildz

Sister of Loretto Elaine Prevallet has devoted much of her life to thoughtful reflection, moving to a clear knowledge of the interconnection of all life. She writes with clarity, passion and humility, inviting readers to consider new insights and connections within their lives. Her most recent book, “A Path to the Divine in Human Life: The Role of Chakras in Religious Dedication,” is the product of years-long reflection and writing about this deeply human and inspired way of understanding the dedication of one’s life energies.

Elaine writes about the congruence between the canonical vows of poverty, chastity and obedience and the fundamental life energies, named in some Eastern traditions as chakras. The awareness of these embodied energy centers is an ancient one, recognized (though perhaps named and nuanced differently) by various religious traditions and gaining more attention in recent years in the West.

We are in a time when religion and religious institutions, along with the traditional forms of life commitment to which they have given rise, are increasingly less relevant to humanity. Yet in this age when the very existence of humanity, of plant and animal species and of Earth herself are in grave peril, the need for persons to commit themselves to living on this planet in life-enhancing ways has, perhaps, never been greater.

If we understood the chakra energies as “driving the survival and development of all living species,” as Elaine says, might we find that relevant contemporary commitment could be as simple as giving an intentional and certain direction to these energies? Elaine posits that, regardless of one’s culture or one’s religious leanings, the dedication of these basic life energies can serve as a framework for commitment in the 21st century. Devoting those fundamental life energies — indeed, making an offering of “my” life-energy — would, as Elaine says, “consciously connect our lives with the larger movement of Life that draws the whole process of Life forward.”

Elaine dedicates this offering to all seekers of the Divine and all seekers of peace on planet Earth. May love draw us together in unity of heart and mind. Elaine’s book is available here, and can be read online or downloaded.

I start with the cosmos because it is critical that we understand how drastically and how speedily this world of ours has changed and is changing! I end with our hearts, alive and ready to be active participants in this present critical phase of our human adventure. I hope those hearts are full of amazement at the miracle of it all. In between … I want to uncover new approaches that may begin to revive and integrate these life energies so that they may continue to be of service in the world that
lies ahead.

Elaine Prevallet, ‘A Path to the Divine in Human Life: The Role of Chakras in Religious Dedication’

Read or download the entire Spring 2022 issue of Loretto Magazine here.


JoAnn Gates

JoAnn, a Loretto co-member since 2000, is director of Knobs Haven, the retreat center located on the grounds of Loretto Motherhouse in Nerinx, Ky. She also is a member of the Community's Emerging Forms Committee.
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