Quote for the Day

The Truth Feels Good. — bumper sticker seen in a gay & lesbian bookstore, Norfolk, Virginia, sometime in the mid-1990s … [Read more...]

So this explains why Americans vote the way they do!

One in four adult Americans read no books at all last year...Liberals read more books than conservatives... … [Read more...]

Conscious Contemplation

I've been reading Robert Llewelyn's perfectly wonderful book With Pity, Not with Blame: The Spirituality of Julian of Norwich and The Cloud of Unknowing for Today in preparation for my upcoming class on Julian at Central UCC in Atlanta. Yesterday I read Llewelyn's comment that, when Julian used the word "contemplation" in chapter 46 of her long text, she doesn't mean it in the sense we use it (as "contemplative prayer") but rather as referring to "levels of awareness." Of course, this brought to … [Read more...]

Mass in Jig Minor

I've been corresponding with a priest of the Celtic Christian Church about the relationship between mainstream Christian mysticism (of the Neoplatonic/Benedictine/Carmelite variety) and the indigenous spirituality of the Celtic lands. It's been a great little conversation so far, and hopefully it will provide grist for the future blogging mill. But for now, I just want to share a little daydream I indulged in before mass this evening:Imagine, if you will, a faith community centered on the … [Read more...]

Quote for the Day

Julian [of Norwich] is without doubt one of the most wonderful of all Christian voices. She gets greater and greater in my eyes as I grow older, and whereas in the old days I used to be crazy about St. John of the Cross, I would not exchange him now for Julian if you gave me the world and the Indies and all the Spanish mystics rolled up in one bundle. I think that Julian of Norwich is with Newman the greatest English theologian." — Thomas Merton, quoted in With Pity Not With Blame: The S … [Read more...]

Celebrating the Love of God: The Wisdom of Julian of Norwich for Today

Celebrating the Love of God: The Wisdom of Julian of Norwich for Today England in the 14th century gave rise to a number of Christian mystics: visionaries whose writings convey a profound sense of God's presence in their lives. Perhaps the best known of these medieval spiritual masters is an obscure woman who is known as Julian of Norwich. Julian's teaching is surprisingly relevant to our time: her writings convey a profound sense of Divine Love expressed through the Motherhood of God. This … [Read more...]

Resistible Grace

Many of my readers might be surprised to learn that I believe in the doctrine of hell.Universalism is very appealing, and given my experiential and intuitive sense of divine love, as well as the splendid description of the same by Julian of Norwich, I simply cannot understand the notion that God is in the business of damning souls. I think the notion of damnation, of divine wrath meted out to the impenitent, is mostly a caricature of our very human thirst for revenge and punishment projected … [Read more...]