Concerning Stillness, Songs, and Soul Friends

A reader writes:Carl, when you are sufficiently silent with the “waters stilled” how do you experience revelation. I suppose a better question would be what is your experience “there” like? Does God float into view … or does God whisper … ?? Or do you find a path to look inwardly in order to find answers, results, etc. I guess that one overarching question here would be “Do you have a purpose or question in mind before you start out?”I believe radically that "silence is praise" (Psalm 65:1, t … [Read more...]

Simplicity and Silence

This message came to me the other day.Hi Carl. Love reading your blogs. From one who is a struggling contemplative can you tell me what form of contemplative prayer you do and why? Also can one do more than one form of contemplative prayer? ie, will one complement the other?Two questions here. First, what does my own daily practice look like? And secondly, what do I think about using more than one method of contemplative practice?First, about what I do. I'm assuming you simply want to … [Read more...]

Plunging Thought Into Light

The Philokalia is an extensive anthology of writings on prayer by Eastern Orthodox contemplatives. The anthology was first compiled in the 18th century, and a number of editions have been published over the years, in Greek, Russian, and other languages; currently a four volume set is available in English (which does not include the entire anthology; I hope the editors plan on translating the rest!).If you want a more succinct introduction to The Philokalia, one option — which, unfortunately, … [Read more...]

Growing in Love and Wisdom

Readers of this blog know that my love and commitment to the Christian contemplative tradition is balanced by a heartfelt desire to learn more about other faiths, particularly the contemplative dimension of other traditions. Naturally, Buddhism, as a school of wisdom with many rich resources in the practice of meditation, is a particularly appealing tradition to me. I live only about three miles from the Atlanta Shambhala Center, so I've taken several classes there and have gotten to know some … [Read more...]

A Christian Prayer for Daily Contemplative Practice

O God of Uncreated Light, we come before you now to offer you our selves. We can only do this through your grace.Grant us the grace of mindfulness. Help us to be calm, so that we may rest in your silence and peace.Grant us the grace of willingness. Transform our will into yours, with delight and joy.Grant us the grace of heartfulness. Unite us with you in the mystery of love, that we may love our neighbors as ourselves.All this we ask with glad confidence and hope in you, O God, by the … [Read more...]

Seven Books on Christianity and Nondualism

My friend Ellen recently asked me on Facebook to define nondualism for her. I referred her to a post I wrote on the subject last summer called Nonduality in the Bible... and Us. Not much to add to that post, but I though I'd offer a short list of books that explore nonduality within a Christian context. These books  come from a variety of perspectives, so read with a thinking mind and a discerning heart.Richard Rohr, The Naked Now: Learning to See as the Mystics See — Probably the single mo … [Read more...]

75 Books for Buddhist-Christian Dialogue

Are you interested in exploring the richness of dialogue and interspiritual practice between Christianity and Buddhism? If so, then here's enough literature to keep you going for a while. Each of the seventy-five books on the following list has some sort of connection with both Christianity and Buddhism.Some of these titles are academic studies, some the writings of monastics, others geared toward the laity. Some are books by Christians about Buddhism, or by Buddhists about interfaith … [Read more...]


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