Contemplation and the Mind of Christ

Some folks — especially those who are familiar with my interfaith work, or my books from before 2005 about neopagan and non-Christian Celtic spirituality — might wonder why I am so committed to the path of Christ. Couldn't I explore mysticism and meditation and contemplation in a non-sectarian or exclusively interspiritual way?Well, yes, of course I could, and I hold no judgment for those who seek their spiritual maturity in such a transreligious way. But I would fear that, for me at least, t … [Read more...]

Carl’s and Fran’s Holiday Gift-Giving Guide for 2011

Here is a list of books for you to consider for the folks on your Nice List this holiday season. These are all books that either I, or in a few my cases my wife, have read over the past year and feel are worthy of our endorsement. Some of these are new books, and some are old; most are Christian, although a few are not; and most are "spiritual" although again, a few might not appear that way — on the surface. But they are all great reads and well worth your attention. As always, a click on the t … [Read more...]

Michael Nugent understands idolatry but gets heaven wrong

The Irish atheist Michael Nugent has some interesting things to say about the use and abuse of faith in a recent opinion piece published in the Irish Times. Faith ceases to be a virtue when it has little connection with facts of reality, he asserts, and points out that placing our faith in secular "gods" (like the banks or capitalism in general) can be as irrational as placing faith in religion or priests. He goes on to make an interesting statement: "all 'gods', whether religious or secular, … [Read more...]

Back to the Mountain

Fran and I spent this past weekend in Sewanee, TN. "The Mountain," as it is affectionately called, is one of the most beautiful places I've ever been, a college town on the Cumberland Plateau nestled in forested land filled with caves, hiking trails, waterfalls, a natural bridge, and other wonders.It's the first time we've been back since my friend Bob's funeral, back in February of 2009. I lived in Sewanee from 1988 to 1993, running the campus bookstore at the University of the South. I left … [Read more...]

Christian Mysticism Class at Evening at Emory begins October 13

There's still time to register for the Introduction to Christian Mysticism class being offered through the Evening at Emory program. Continuing education credit is available for this 5-week class. To register, click here. Here's the course description from the Emory website:Introduction to Christian MysticismEvening at EmoryHumanities and Cultural Studies The renowned twentieth century German theologian Karl Rahner said, “The Christian of the future will be a mystic or will not e … [Read more...]

Preach it, Brother Stephen!

This was on Facebook the other day (thanks to Jack G. for posting it!). … [Read more...]

“Eleven years of Catholic education had told me nothing about Christian meditation.”

Here's an interesting article published the other day in the Utah Statesman by a fellow named Michael Sowder: Finding Home in India. The author tells the story of his spiritual journey, and it's a story I've heard again and again. Basically, it runs like this: born into a Christian family, Sowder (and countless others like him) finds himself befuddled by the sterile Christian education he received as a child. Eventually he  goes on to find meaning and insight in contemplative spirituality … [Read more...]


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