Resources for Contemplatives
Contemplation and Community
“All around the world a resurgence of Christian contemplative living is creating a new framework for spirituality inside and outside of formal religion. Building on and expanding from the thoughts and works of such as Richard Rohr, Thomas Keating, Tilden Edwards, Laurence Freeman, and other founding members of the modern contemplative movement, a new movement carries on the work of their mentors. This collection brings together the diverse voices who have emerged as new leaders of the contemplative movement. Exploring a multitude of themes, such as silence, imagination, meditation, embodiment, community and social action, this volume introduces the new voices who reflect globally on the gifts, challenges, differences and commonalities of Christian contemplation today for communities and people of faith.”
The Complete Mystical Works of Meister Eckhart
“Now available in a single-volume edition, this exhaustive collection has been completely revised and includes a new introduction by a leading Eckhart scholar. Containing the entire text of all of Eckhart’s vernacular-the German texts, which present his personal reflections on topics such as the poverty of spirit and the birth of Christ in the soul-this treasury is the authoritative volume of Eckhart’s enduring legacy to Christianity.”
The Soul of a Leader
Finding Your Path to Success and Fulfillment
“Demonstrating the principle that soulfulness at work is a way of being and doing, this guide provides new perspectives on the qualities of leadership. Three main sections elaborate on the themes of choosing the path, staying on track, and persevering to the end. Drawing from interviews with outstanding leaders-including Tom and Kate Chappell, the founders of Tom’s of Maine; Bob Glassman, co-chairman of Wainwright Bank & Trust; Desmond Tutu; and The Edge of rock band U2-and supported with guided questions in each section, this book is an essential addition to the bookshelf of anyone who wants to lead with soul. In an environment where leaders are rewarded for their drive, decisiveness, productivity, and long work hours, the spiritual well-being of a leader may get short shrift, and harm can come to both the leader and the organization this individual serves. Challenging the assumptions that effective leaders must sell their souls, cut corners, cook the books, and let go of their vision, a new model of spiritual leadership is offered. Teachers, parents, committee chair leaders, and other individuals in organizations of any size are exhorted to aim higher and lead with soul in any sphere, large or small.”
Astrophysics and Creation
Perceiving the Universe through Science and Participation
“For centuries the dialogue, and often the heated debate, between science and religion was dominated by the question of whether and how God might be experienced through the scientific study of nature. While scientists observe and explore the universe through widening knowledge, believers awed by its splendor & enter into relationship, becoming participants in this cosmos.In Astrophysics and Creation, renowned Christian and astrophysicist Arnold Bentz draws on personal experience, as well as biblical theology, to bring science and theology into a dialogue that will alter the way you see life. Bentz insists that human perception reaches further than science and demonstrates this in various examples, personal, biblical, and literary. Engaging stargazers from Isaac Newton and Pierre Simon Laplace to Walt Whitman and Immanuel Kant, along with the Christian gospels, Bentz brings into focus the varying perspectives forming the bases of science and theology and their relationship to one another. Bentz’s illuminating argument not only claims that science and religion are reconcilable but also aims to show explicitly how they are compatible.”
A Dialogue with the Gospel of Thomas
“In Jesus’ Twin, a scholar shares his personal reflections into the Gospel of Thomas offering a learned, accessible introduction as well as inspiring insights into these ancient texts that have long stirred curiosity and inquiry. James Heisig, who has read and studied the texts throughout his distinguished career as a scholar and teacher of religions, shows that the reasons for excluding the Gospel of Thomas from the Christian tradition are largely meaningless for us today. After more than half a century of concerted dialogue with other traditions, we are in a better position to recognize that not every alter Jesus is a Jesus alias. At the same time, attention to the spiritual demands being made on Christianity by our present age helps draw us more deeply into the text itself and control the tendency to immunize ourselves against its discomforts, whether through the distractions of scholarly disputation or the preoccupation with preserving orthodoxy.”
The Zen Teachings of Jesus
“This book reflects the spiritual side of Zen, the art to trust and accept life that coincides with the core of the Gospel message. For power, dogma and doctrine were not Jesus’ passion, but the mystery of life and the possibility of love. Sometimes people have overlooked the joy, the humor and the depth of Jesus’ teachings—often because they could not surmount the narrow confines of openness to the scripture’s power to transform our lives.”
The Call to Discernment in Troubled Times
New Perspectives on the Transformative Wisdom of Ignatius of Loyola
“A new kind of spiritual classic and a powerful reintroduction to Christianity, this hopeful book by esteemed pastor and teacher Fr. Dean Brackley integrates a realistic analysis of today’s social crisis with the deep personal spirituality of St. Ignatius Loyola.”
A Christian Perspective
“Richard Rohr and Andrea Ebert’s runaway best-seller shows both the basic logic of the Enneagram and its harmony with the core truths of Christian thought from the time of the early Church forward.”
The Naked Now
Learning to See How the Mystics See
“Bestselling author Richard Rohr brings us back to the truths of Christian faith and shows us that non-dualistic thinking, awareness of the present, and release from ego can awaken our spirits and open us to joy, transformation, and enlightenment.”
The Gift of Contemplative Prayer
“In Everything Belongs, Richard Rohr offers a personal retreat for those who hunger for a deeper spiritual life but don’t know what contemplation is. Fr. Rohr helps us understand that intimacy with God cannot be achieved in the rational mind. By practicing contemplation, we learn not to reason better but to see everything–including ourselves and other people–differently. As our perspective becomes wider, we discover that everything belongs. This edition include a reading guide for individual and group reflection.”
Finding Stillness, Silence and Simplicity
“Many people today have a deep spiritual thirst and hunger that in many ways is as urgent as the material needs of developing nations. Unless affluent societies escape the addiction to materialism, they will be unable to feel the depth of compassion from which works of mercy and justice spring.
Laurence Freeman teaches a way to spiritual health that is both ancient and new. The desert fathers practiced silent prayer and the church in our own day has rediscovered its liberating power. To sit down before God in silence does more than empty our minds of our own concerns. It opens us to the mystery of life, to seeing thing from God’s perspective rather than our own limited viewpoint, to the power of faith that heals and raises us to love God and our neighbour.”
Meditation and Contemplation
An Ignatian Guide to Praying with the Scripture
“The cornerstones of Ignatius of Loyola’s spiritual practice-meditation and contemplation-are clearly explained in this simple guide to the Ignatian method with examples from the experience of practitioners and quotations from Catholic spiritual teachers. In the process, the deeper structure of the spiritual practice is illuminated, and advice about adapting it to individual needs is offered. Topics include methods of praying, struggles and growth, and the importance and role of grace. Individuals who desire to pray with scripture, spiritual directors, and all who teach prayer with scripture will benefit from the counsel in this resource.”
The Discernment of Spirits
An Ignatian Guide to Everyday Living
“Fr. Timothy Gallagher, a talented teacher, retreat leader, and scholar, helps us understand the Rules and how their insights are essential for our spiritual growth today. By integrating the Rules and the experience of contemporary people, Gallagher shows the precision, clarity and insight of Ignatius’s Rules.”
Discerning the Will of God
An Ignatian Guide to Christian Decision Making
“Every Chrstian has a Mission. What’s Yours?
“Is it time to change jobs?” “Should I marry?”
“Am I called to religious life?”
Sooner or later, every thoughtful Christian asks such questions. For everyone ready to make the shift from “What do I want for my life?” to “what does God want for my life?” Fr. Gallagher offers this new book to help you make sense of your major life decisions.
Drawing from the timeless methods of Ignatius Loyola and richly illustrated with examples and stories, this book offers practical wisdom for aligning your will to God’s will. Fr. Gallagher takes you through each step of the process, including opening your heart to whatever God wants; making use of silence, the Eucharist, Scripture, and spiritual direction; and finding clarity (and what to do when you lack clarity).
While this book focuses on the major decisions such as marriage and career and vocation choices, the insights gained here can be adapted to other significant life decisions as well. Fr. Gallagher’s clear style makes this book an important resource for all who want to discover where God is leading them, as well as for spiritual directors, retreat directors, and counselors”
Praying Body and Soul
Methods and Practices
“A step-by-step exercise book integrating the Christian tradition of contemplation and the Eastern wisdom of meditation. Each chapter offers an awareness exercise, a mental focus, and an imagining exercise using stories from the Bible, and concludes with a short parable or a text from tradition. The texts draw from the clarity of the Ignatian Exercises and reflect an outstanding experience with prayer and meditation in today’s world.”
Crossing the Inner Barrier to a Deeper Love
“Paula D’Arcy talks about some of the sacred crucibles in her life—moments when life took her to places she’d never anticipated and asked her to yield to things that could not be changed. The book includes her story of Morrie Schwartz, of Tuesdays with Morrie, and of the relationship they forged in the final eighteen months of his life. As Morrie wrestled with his imminent death, they both grew to feel a keen sense of their common humanity and a responsibility to give back to this world by helping others discover all that’s possible in their lives.This story, and others gathered here, radically challenges one’s understanding of love.”
A Listening Heart
The Spirituality of Sacred Sensuousness
“In this book, Brother David Steindl-Rast, who has been a monk for more than 50 years, argues that every sensual experience—whether the joy of walking barefoot or the fragrance of the season—should be recognized as a spiritual one.”
Pathways to Prayer
“Prayers has been translated into 24 languages and has sold more than 2,500,000 copies worldwide. New Prayers is a fresh collection of prayers and meditations written by a man who is passionately in love with God and life and truth. Each prayer penetrates to the heart of human experience. Whether celebrating the small victories of each day, or encouraging and supporting the struggle of a lifetime, through Michel Quoist comes the call to embrace all of human existence, its mystery, variety, pleasure, and sorrow.”
Renewing the Ancient Practice of Praying the Scriptures
“This guidebook for today’s Christian describes the time tested method of praying with the Scriptures for wisdom, guidance, and joy. Lectio also involves our response to the Word received, it is a two-way communication. This method and discipline is universal in application and has been practiced by monastics and other Christians for over a thousand years.”
Praying at Every Turn
Meditations for Walking the Labyrinth
“Carole Ann Camp describes walking a labyrinth in this way. “Walking the path into the center of the labyrinth is a metaphor for finding one’s own center or finding God. Walking out of the labyrinth is a symbol of being reborn into the world.” An ancient spiritual practice, the use of labyrinths has come back into vogue in some parts of the Christian community. Although much has been written on “how to,” Camp’s idea of creating meditations to contemplate as one walks the path is unique. Camp is a retired ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. She has served several churches in Western Massachusetts as pastor. She holds an M.Div. degree from Andover Newton Theological School and an Ed.D. from the University of Massachusetts..”
The Rule of Benedict
A Spirituality for the 21st Century
“This new edition of a five-hundred-year-old classic, The Rule of Benedict , combines the wisdom of the ancient Benedict of Nursia’s Rule and author Joan Chittister’s practical and inspiring commentary. Amazingly, the Rule is as relevant today as it was hundreds of years ago. It addresses today’s major spiritual issues – stewardship, relationships, authority, community, balance, work, simplicity, prayer, and psychological development. Its simple text, appendix, updated content, new foreword, and reading guide make this book an important resource for individuals and communities desiring spiritual growth in the midst of today’s hectic world. Paperback.”
The Contemplative Experience
Erotic Love and Spiritual Union
“One of the most profound and noble expressions of Christian spirituality, contemplation is as familiar to the Trappist monk as the Buddhist one. In each tradition the power of desire, purified and redirected toward God, breaks through the heat of longing into the perfect fullness of Christlike love.
The Contemplative Experience celebrates the mature monastic eros& holy desire& and encourages an understanding of the ways that lead to an experience of immersion in the love of God.”
“These mysteries are not only sacramental events but teaching devices intended to lead us to an experience of God. The author brings fresh insights to these familiar events and suggests spiritual exercises to help us on the way. She shows us how to pray by entering into the viewpoint of Jesus, to fast by discarding beliefs that inhibit us from enjoying the fullness of divine life, and to see the Stations of the Cross as subtle stages in our own spiritual awareness as we approach the greatest Mystery of all: resurrection and union with God.”
The Creation of a Self-Creating World
“Philosopher Bruteau brings to mind the great Teilhard de Chardin in the description of the universe as God’s ecstasy. She captures the beauty and the complexity of God’s evolving manifestation through vignettes from physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, economics, and politics. And she inspires us to be co-creators with God in the process of Christogenesis, the growth of the ever-greater Christ.”
Intimacy with God
An Introduction to Centering Prayer
“Founder of the Centering Prayer movement and bestselling author Thomas Keating offers an introduction to Centering Prayer and explores the roots and development of the practice as well as addressing the unfolding process of integrating contemplation into a daily routine.”
Meditations on the Parables of Jesus
“Revising much of the content originally published in The Kingdom of God Is Like, and adding selected material from Awakenings and Reawakenings, Thomas Keating continues to stir the Christian imagination with insightful commentary on the parables of the Bible. Including the Mustard Seed, the Narrow Door, the Penitent Woman, the Sower, the Prodigal Son, and others, this collection of corresponding meditations renews the voice and vigor of each parable’s deeper meaning—so often overlooked through familiarity and fame. Originally told to seekers in an ancient land, each parable—packed with clues about the meaning of life, the nature of God, and the purpose of creation—has as much relevance and resonance as ever for both teaching the lessons of God and his mercy and for understanding the daily struggles of today’s fast-paced world.”
Heart of the World
An Introduction to Contemplative Christianity
“The transcendent experience that many Christians seek in Eastern religions is abundantly available to those who make use of the suggestions in this introduction to Contemplative Christianity. The Christian heritage contains a rich contemplative wisdom, literature, and practice, and this volume is written for those who would like to find enrichment in spiritual practices grounded in non-Christian religions while retaining basic Christian commitments. Traditional Christian subjects such as sacrifice, redemption, salvation, faith, and prayer are discussed to foster understanding of their contemplative aspects. Explanations on how practices such as Lectio Divina clear the mind of the hectic nature of everyday life and help prepare the heart for profound listening to the divine within are also included.”
“In Awakenings, Thomas Keating invites the reader to look afresh at the Word of God and see, perhaps for the first time, the relevance of these ancient words to life today. Arranged by events in Jesus’ ministry, themes in his teachings, and liturgical celebrations of his presence, these spiritually profound homilies invite personal contemplation and meditation. They are also helpful for pastors, teachers, and seminary students.”
“In Reawakenings, the sequel to Thomas Keating’s bestselling Awakenings, Father Keating examines key events in the ministry of Jesus, the important parables that were recorded, and the many celebrations of his presence.”
Pilgrimage of a Soul
Contemplative Spirituality for the Active Life
“Activists often see contemplation as a luxury, the sort of thing necessarily set aside in the quest to see the world set aright. But in Pilgrimmage of a Soul, we see that contemplation is essential. Tracing seven movements from a kind of sleepfulness to a kind of wakefulness, Phileena Heuertz shows us that life is a journey that repeats itself as Christ leads us deeper and deeper into our true selves and a truer knowledge of God. This revised edition includes spiritual practices with each chapter, as well as questions for group discussion and individual reflection.”
The Heart of Christian Contemplation
“Our fast-paced lives are filled with distractions, frequently leaving us disillusioned and dissatisfied—with ourselves, with others, and even with God. Spiritual practices that used to sustain us fall short when life circumstances bring us to the limits of our self.
After many years leading an international humanitarian organization, Phileena Heuertz experienced the deconstruction of her identity, worldview, and faith. Centering prayer, a Christian expression of mindfulness, was a crucial remedy for her fragmented condition, offering a more peace-filled and purposeful life.
The hallmarks of contemplative spirituality—solitude, silence, and stillness—have never been more important for our society:
- In solitude, we develop the capacity to be present.
- In silence, we cultivate the ability to listen.
- In stillness, we acquire the skill of self-control.
Contemplative prayer helps us discern the voice of God, uncover our true self, and live a life of meaning and purpose.
Filled with insights and wisdom from her own experience, Phileena introduces us to themes and teachers of contemplative spirituality, as well as several prayer practices, and invites us to greater healing and wholeness by learning to practice faith through prayer.
This is an opportunity to go deeper with God—to experience the Divine and be transformed.”
Soul at Work
Spiritual Leadership in Organizations
“Working with Margaret Benefiel has helped me, in a short time, become grounded in Spirit in my corporate workplace. The power and productivity of this spiritual work gives me hope that leaders can encourage people to bring their whole selves into the workplace and that this will lead to more tangible and positive organizational results.”–Kerry Hamilton Senior Vice President, Director of Marketing, BJ’s Wholesale Clubs In the last ten years, dozens of books about spirituality and management have demonstrated the yearning for spirituality in the workplace that exists in people like Kerry Hamilton. No longer content to abide the widening chasm between their deeply-held values and the all-too-common business practices they encounter, these readers long for congruence between their values and their work. They wonder whether the days of the giants of corporate character like Johnson & Johnson, businesses who believed that integrity and profitability could co-exist, are gone for good. Are we living in a state of business and organizational entropy? Are we doomed to endless repetition of the Enron, Worldcom, and Global Crossing scandals? Must integrity and profitability now be opposed? What has happened to American business, healthcare, and non-profits in the last forty years? “Soul at Work: Spiritual Leadership in Organizations “demonstrates vividly that another way is possible, based on the contemporary restoration of the partnership between integrity and profitability. “Soul at Work” translates the core of what companies like Johnson and Johnson stood for forty years ago into contemporary forms. “Soul at Work “shows, through compelling stories of contemporary businesses, healthcare organizations, and nonprofits, how integrity, profitability, and personal and organizational transformation are all of a piece.”
The Divine Dance
The Trinity and Your Transformation
“What if changing our perception of God has the potential to change everything?
God is not what you think. Visions of an angry, distant, moral scorekeeper or a supernatural Santa Claus handing out cosmic lottery tickets to those who attend the right church or say the right prayer dominate our culture. For many others, God has become irrelevant or simply unbelievable.
In The Divine Dance, Fr. Richard Rohr (with Mike Morrell) points readers to an unlikely opening beyond this divinity impasse: the at-times forgotten, ancient mystery of the Trinity-God as utterly one, yet three.
Drawing from Scripture, theology, and the deepest insights of mystics, philosophers, and sages throughout history, Fr. Rohr presents a compelling alternative to aloof and fairytale versions of God:
One God, belovedly in communion, as All-Vulnerable, All-Embracing, and All-Given to you and me.
The Divine Dance makes accessible and practicable the Christian tradition’s most surprising gift.
God as Community.as Friendship.as Dance.
Are you ready to join in?”
The Better Part
Stages of Contemplative Living
“Written with the spiritual simplicity that is the result of many years of monastic living, The Better Part is a book both for those new to Centering Prayer and for long-time practitioners. It begins with a reflection on the New Testament family of Martha, Mary, and Lazarus as “a household of persons at various stages of the spiritual life. All of it comes together to make the foundational format for the Centering Prayer stance.”
Finding Grace at the Center
The Beginning of Centering Prayer
“A 25th Anniversary Edition of the classic that helped launch the Centering Prayer movement.
Centering Prayer is a precious part of the ancient spiritual traditions of the West. When Finding Grace at the Center was first published in 1978, people all over the world welcomed this practical guide to a simple and beautiful form of meditative prayer. Reflections and advice on Centering Prayer’s possibilities—and its pitfalls—are presented with clarity and simplicity, with a vision of the deeper life of the soul that contemplative prayer can bring about. Now, with a new foreword by Father Basil Pennington, another generation will discover the amazing difference Centering Prayer can make in their lives.
Finding Grace at the Center explains:
- The prayer of The Cloud of Unknowing
- Posture and relaxation
- The three simple rules of Centering Prayer
- How to cultivate Centering Prayer throughout all aspects of your life
Whether you’re familiar with Centering Prayer or just learning about it for the first time, this inspirational and informative guide will introduce you to the practice and show you how Centering Prayer can strengthen your connection to faith.
“Basil Pennington is a gifted, creative, powerful and wise teacher—one of the truly precious souls of our generation.” -Lawrence Kushner, author of Invisible Lines of Connection: Sacred Stories of the Ordinary
“Father Keating writes with the simplicity and depth that emerges from more than fifty years of practicing to become a ‘friend of God.’…Those of us who learn from him are grateful for—and blessed by—his gifts.” -Elaine Pagels, author of Adam, Eve, and the Serpent
M. Basil Pennington, ocso was a monk for more than fifty years. He lived at St. Joseph’s Abbey in Spencer, Massachusetts and was the author of many modern spiritual classics, including Lectio Divina and Centering Prayer.
Thomas Keating, ocso, is a monk, priest, and former abbot who currently lives at St. Benedict’s Monastery in Snowmass, Colorado. His books include Open Mind, Open Heart and Intimacy with God.
Thomas E. Clarke, sj, is a well-known Jesuit writer and spiritual father. He now resides at Bethany Retreat Center in Highland Mills, New York.”
Monastery without Walls
The Spiritual Letters of John Main
“Much of today’s fascination with and attraction to the Rule of St. Benedict can be attributed to John Main, a Benedictine monk, who first saw that this rule of life for monastic communities could be relevant for Christian living in the secular world. He founded a community of lay people who shared his vision and from this small beginning has grown.
The World Community for Christian Meditation which today is active in numerous countries around the world and has thousands of members and associates. Its work, and its emphasis on meditation, derives directly from the Benedictine focus on prayer and lectio divina or holy reading.
Right up to the end of his life in 1982, John Main wrote a series of remarkable letters of spiritual direction to WCCM’s growing family. Two collections have previously been published and are now out of print and the complete letters are now published in this single volume. Together they constitute a volume of remarkable spiritual wisdom and insight, as fresh and relevant for today as when they were first written.”
In the School of Contemplation
“Dom Louf, well known abbot of Mont-des-Cats, still speaks to us on prayer. In this book he brings together talks given to a variety of audiences in which he shares his spiritual experience from both his life of prayer and his life in community. He offers inspiring insights into the spiritual experience and on the priority of love as well as other areas of our Christian life: community life, obedience, prayer, psalms, the liturgy, and more. In this book we enter “”A school of contemplation”” wherein the monastic experience enlightens our lives and service to the world and the Church.”
The Jesus Prayer
A Way to Contemplation
“Bishop Simon Barrington-Ward guides readers through the Jesus Prayer: “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Have mercy on me.” The author takes us on a travelogue through his experience of the simple, yet profound prayer. Readers are invited to plumb the depths of this short prayer and to discover a hidden treasure passed down to us through the ancient traditions of Eastern Christianity as they experience the presence of Jesus in their lives.”
New Seeds of Contemplation
Introduction by Sue Monk Kidd
“Destined to go down as one of the great spiritual classics of the century,”—New Republic. Merton seeks to awaken the inner depths of the spirit, long dormant and neglected in Western culture, to cultivate and nurture our contemplative/mystical side, the heart of all religious experience. 208 pages, softcover. New Directions”