“Into the Great Silence” – UPDATED

A few weeks ago, I posted Carthusians Abounding, linking you to Nancy Klein Maguire's excellent new book, An Infinity of Little Hours and the trailer for the documentary Into the Great Silence.I don't think it's any accident that two wholly unconnected people, a writer/researcher and a filmmaker have devoted years of their lives to scoping out and presenting to us (at THIS time in history) such vivid - and yes, tantalizing - pieces about the Carthusians, an order of monastics who live … [Read more...]

Everything is coming up monkish

Over the last two days monks have been springing up around me!A three hour, nearly silent documentary on Carthusian monks is becoming a surprise hit.Sean Farnel of the Toronto Film Festival called it "a film of tranquility, stillness and contemplation…marked by moments of visual splendor and almost tactile sound: the rumpled roar of the wood stove; scissors crisply crunching through heavy cloth; the soothing, murmured rhythms of the liturgy." "At a time in which spiritual practice is a r … [Read more...]

Reality TV in a Benedictine Monastery

Finally, something worth watching!Five men, ranging from an atheist in the pornography trade to a former Protestant paramilitary, have found their lives unexpectedly transformed in the latest incarnation of reality television - the monastery.More Oh Brother! than Big Brother, the five underwent a spiritual makeover by spending 40 days and 40 nights living with Roman Catholic monks in Worth Abbey, West Sussex.The experiment, which will be shown on BBC 2 this month, was designed to test … [Read more...]

Tracey Channels Barbara Walters…almost

I don't know how I get myself into these things.Several days ago, John and Weets at Lucid Moments suggested this sort of "round robin" interview thingie, where one blogger would answer questions and then agree to interview a few other bloggers.Because I am dense, I didn't quite "get it" for a while. Then I read Tracey Allen answering Amber Lynn's questions and said, ok - fine - that doesn't look too bad...I'll be interviewed.But I thought they would be simple questions like: What are you … [Read more...]

A Little Cyber-Retreat You Can Call Your Own

It's rare for a monastery to get written up in a travel magazine, but The Trappist Monastery of the Holy Spirit has had a lovely write up in Travelgirl Magazine. The pictures are lovely. I wish I could go right now. Enjoy.UPDATE: I have only just gotten to read the ruminations of the two retreatants profiled here. I was most taken with the agnostic man's compelling remarks, and thought I'd highlight a bit of his experience and thoughts.The bulletin board in the quiet dining room has a posting to … [Read more...]


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