The Flicker of the Screen

For if there is no dark night of the soul anymore that isn’t lit with the flicker of the screen, then there is no morning of hopefulness either.The above quotation comes from a fascinating, and I believe vitally important, article by Andrew Sullivan, called I Used to Be A Human Being. Originally published in New York magazine, it's long for an internet article (7000 words) — but read it anyway. Take the time. Savor the beautiful language, the keen insight, but most important of all, it's vital … [Read more...]

Do Contemplatives Need the Church?

A post on this blog received the following comment yesterday:Having been with the Catholic Church and seminary trained for all my 71 years of life . I am naturally contemplative . But I do now believe practising formal meditation/contemplation is false . Aren’t we missing the point if we try and set time aside for contemplation?Surely if we are made in Gods image we are already suffused with Gods holy grace and we are divinised, so if we are living in Christ what’s the point in pretending to … [Read more...]

The Rule, the Discipline, and Spiritual Growth

I bet if I took a poll, almost everyone who reads my blog would agree with this statement: "I want to grow spiritually."Readers of spiritual blogs want to grow in their faith and practice the way that readers of marketing blogs want to expand their business, or the readers of investment blogs want to make more money. It's part of the nobility of being human: we see areas in our lives where we want improvement, and we try to gain more knowledge, more skill, more discipline in order to reach … [Read more...]

You can do it, my friend: you can thrive with a daily practice of silent prayer

In my travels I hear a lot from people who get discouraged regarding silent prayer.Some folks tell me their minds race too much when they try to pray in silence.Others tell me they're so busy, they just can't seem to find the time to pray.Still others talk about how they get bored during their silent time, or fidgety, or overwhelmed with a feeling that they're not making progress.My friends, it's easy to get discouraged when embracing a daily discipline of silent prayer. It seems … [Read more...]