Why Contemplation is Revolutionary (Part One)

In yesterday's post (The Archbishop and the Community Theologian) I quoted two renowned living contemplatives — emeritus Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and author/community theologian Kenneth Leech — both speaking of the communal and social implications of contemplative prayer.Naysayers, stand aside. Contemplative prayer is not about navel-gazing or self-absorbed "spiritual experiences." Indeed, anyone who explores contemplation only out of a desire for mystical experience or per … [Read more...]

Four interesting articles

I've recently read four interesting articles online.In Spiritual but Not Religious? Please Stop Boring Me, UCC Minister Lillian Daniel takes aim at those who reject traditional religious affiliation but who retain a sense of themselves as "spiritual" beings. She sees such a position as shallow and narcissistic, and suggests that such persons find themselves more "fascinating" than ancient religions, but in truth such self-centered thinking is ultimately "bland." In response, Religious … [Read more...]

Concerning Theology, Straw, and Basic Kindness

In New Seeds of Contemplation, Merton made this acerbic, but I think on-the-mark, comment: "Beware of the contemplative who says that theology is all straw before he has ever bothered to read any." Historically, theology and mysticism were not two separate disciplines, but rather two sides of the same coin. Theology, or "God-talk," sought to express what in contemplation comes to us as ineffable mysteries. Why bother, you might ask, to attempt to speak of what cannot be put into words? Like the … [Read more...]


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