1: punishment

obsolete: instruction

3: a field of study

4: training that corrects, molds, or perfects the mental faculties or moral character

5 (a): control gained by enforcing obedience or order; (b): orderly or prescribed conduct or pattern of behavior; (c): self-control

6: a rule or system of rules governing conduct or activity

Source: www.merriam-webster.com


Discipline (n.): early 13th century, “penitential chastisement; punishment,” from Old French descepline (11th century) “discipline, physical punishment; teaching; suffering; martyrdom,” and directly from Latin disciplina “instruction given, teaching, learning, knowledge,” also “object of instruction, knowledge, science, military discipline,” from discipulus (related to: disciple).

Sense of “treatment that corrects or punishes” is from notion of “order necessary for instruction.”  The Latin word is glossed in Old English by peodscipe. Meaning “branch of instruction or education” is first recorded late 14th century.  Meaning “military training” is from late 15th century; that of “orderly conduct as a result of training” is from c. 1500.



“Life is a curriculum unique to every student.” 

Joyce Rachelle (writer, poet, disciple of Jesus, and author of "The Language of Angels")

Bio Source:


“Class is an aura of confidence that is being sure without being cocky. Class has nothing to do with money. Class never runs scared. It is self-discipline and self-knowledge. It's the sure-footedness that comes with having proved you can meet life.” 

Ann Landers (1918-2002, the famous advice columnist who developed a newspaper readership counting into the millions)

Bio Source:


“Self-respect is the root of discipline: The sense of dignity grows with the ability to say no to oneself.” 

Abraham Joshua Heschel (1907 – 1972, Polish-born American rabbi and one of the leading Jewish theologians and philosophers of the 20th century)

Bio Source:


“True freedom is impossible without a mind made free by discipline.” 

Mortimer J. Adler (1902—2001, American philosopher, educator, editor, and advocate of adult and general education by study of the great writings of the Western world;  author of "How to Read a Book: The Classic Guide to Intelligent Reading")

Bio Source:


“Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.” 

Plato (429?–347 B.C.E., one of the most dazzling writers in the Western literary tradition and one of the most penetrating, wide-ranging, and influential authors in the history of philosophy)

Bio Source:



“True freedom is impossible without a mind made free by discipline.”

Mortimer J. Adler


What are our spiritual disciplines?  What are the daily routines to center and ground us?  What are the exercises that can purify our hearts, bodies, and minds?

Personally, I have a few daily routines that I have developed gradually over the last twenty-five years.   As soon as I open my eyes I journal for about 15 minutes from my stream of consciousness, not worrying about grammar nor punctuation.  I then read something of interest and afterwards take a meditative walk where I soak in the beauty and elements of Creation.  This is the beginning of what sets the tone for my day, and a reminder that I am strong enough to handle any circumstance that is thrown my way.

Spiritual discipline models a through-line of consistency and provides the springboards to break our self-imposed limitations.  Over time, stress is released as our minds and bodies calm to states of equanimity.

Sojourners, let’s continue to search for and find those mind, body, and spiritual disciplines that bring joy and peace, and ultimate freedom.

Faithfully Yours, Tonya






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *