Bhakti Jesus?

I know a monk who criticizes devotionalism. Rosaries, novenas, consecration to Mary, that sort of thing: he sees no use for it. He simply prefers methodless silent prayer. We have an ongoing conversation/debate about this. I keep saying that such devotionalism is a valid, cataphatic form of spiritual practice. He is willing to accept that but only if cataphatic spirituality is seen as a prelude to the "higher" apophatic form of practice.Incidentally, cataphatic (also spelled kataphatic) … [Read more...]

The Bible Beyond Fear

Yesterday a person who's attending the Christian mysticism event in Portland wrote to me and said: A question just occurred to me ... for a few reasons (one being paralyzing fear about End Times) I haven't been reading the Bible in the last few years.  I was taught to read and interpret in a very unhealthy, fearful way.  I had to disconnect myself from it for a while but I'd like very much to reintroduce myself to the Bible and begin reading with new eyes and my new heart. What a great question, … [Read more...]

October 1 and 2: Christian Mysticism Weekend in Atlanta

We are putting together a "Christian Mysticism and Contemplative Spirituality Weekend Event" to take place Friday, October 1 and Saturday, October 2, 2010 at First Christian Church of Atlanta, 4532 LaVista Road, Tucker, GA 30084. Here's what the schedule looks like:Friday, October 1, 7 - 9 PM: “What is Christian Mysticism, and Why Should I Care?” In John 16:12, Jesus says to his disciples, “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.” Perhaps Jesus was referring to th … [Read more...]

Quote for the Day

In order to arrive at having pleasure in everything, Desire to have pleasure in nothing. In order to arrive at possessing everything, Desire to possess nothing. In order to arrive at being everything, Desire to be nothing. In order to arrive at knowing everything, Desire to know nothing. — John of the Cross, Ascent of Mount Carmel … [Read more...]

Quote for the Day

Contemplation, as it has come to be understood in the Christian tradition, is a return to the paradisiacal state of union with God, which brings to fulfillment the redemptive act of Christ. It is the beginning of a level of consciousness, beyond ordinary consciousness, in which one begins to experience the reality of new life, of risen life. It is an experience of union with God and a realization of our oneness with our brothers and sisters. — William H Shannon, Seeds of Peace: Contemplation and … [Read more...]

Book suggestions from Lindisfarne

A fellow named David from the Community of Aidan and Hilda has gotten in touch with me. He shares my conviction that Christian mysticism and Celtic spirituality naturally coinhere. Visiting his community's website stirs in me a longing to visit both Lindisfarne and Iona, neither of which I have yet to see (I always seem to end up in Ireland whenever I go to the British Isles).David recommended three books to me: Exploring Celtic Spirituality by Ray Simpson Restoring the Woven Cord by … [Read more...]

And what do YOU like to read?

Here's something just for fun — that sheds some light on the reading habits of those who visit my humble website.Scattered throughout this blog and website are links to various books — books I've written, books written by people I've interviewed (like John O'Donohue), or books that I've reviewed, recommended, or otherwise mentioned once or twice. These links take you to Amazon where you can purchase the book — and if you do so, I get a small commission in the form of a credit that I can use at … [Read more...]


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