Similar ebooks

Bestseller!

For over fifteen hundred years St. Benedict's Rule has been a source of guidance, support, inspiration, challenge, comfort and discomfort for men and women. It has helped both those living under monastic vows and those living outside the cloister in all the mess and muddle of ordinary, busy lives in the world. Esther de Waal's Seeking God serves as an introduction to this life-giving way and encourages people to discover for themselves the gift that St. Benedict can bring to individuals, to the Church, and to the world, now and in the years to come.

Through this definitive classic Esther de Waal has become known as an authority for the lay person on the Rule of St. Benedict. Her ability to communicate clearly the principal values of the Rule when applied to lay people is the ultimate strength of this book. She follows each chapter with a page or two of thoughts and prayers, contributing to its meditative quality.

Esther de Waal is an Anglican lay woman, married with four sons and a number of grandchildren. She lives on the Welsh Borders where she grew up and spends her time gardening, writing, traveling, and taking retreats. She became interested in Benedictine monasticism as a result of living for ten years in Canterbury and has written several books on the Rule of St. Benedict including a life-Giving Way, published by The Liturgical Press, 1995. She holds a PhD. from Cambridge and was given an honorary doctorate from St. John's University for her contribution to Benedictine studies and for her ecumenical work. She was awarded the Templeton Prize for having started the Benedictine Experience weeks which are now widely held throughout America and England.

In Finding Sanctuary Abbot Christopher Jamison, host of the BBC television series ?The Monastery,? suggests the teachings of St. Benedict are a tool for everyday life?for those who are religious and for those simply searching for spiritual guidance. ?The Monastery? involved five non-monks living the monastic life for forty days while TV cameras tracked their progress. The sight of monks responding thoughtfully and helpfully to ordinary people?s struggles was a surprise to millions of viewers who had presumed that monks were ?out of touch.? St. Benedict wrote his Rule for monastic living 1,500 years ago when he was abbot of Monte Cassino, the monastery that sits atop an inspiring mountain to the East of Rome. The name, ?The Rule of St. Benedict,? often misleads people into thinking that Benedict wrote ?a book of rules.? In fact, he wrote insights for Christian living, with practical suggestions for daily practice. The insights still guide people today and many of the rules have been adapted to local conditions as Benedict requested. In every generation monastics integrate modern realities and the wisdom of the Rule in a new fusion. That fusion is the spiritual energy enabling monasteries to be places of sanctuary today as they have been for centuries. And that sanctuary can be recreated in the hearts of people of good will. This book explains how St. Benedict?s wisdom can be applied to busy modern lives, and how sanctuary, peace, and insight can be achieved by people living inside and outside of monasteries.? . . . readers will be surprised at how important ancient monastic practices are for our modern lives. The book is well worth reading.? Liguorian?Abbot Christopher outlines the wisdom of St. Benedict and suggests how it can be applied to people outside the monastery. His voice is tuned especially for those who are not sure what they believe but are looking for ways to find spiritual space and peace in the busy and often confusing modern world.? Crux?There is much food for thought and prayer as Jamison details counter-cultural chapters on silence, contemplation, obedience, humility, community, spirituality and hope. In his explanation of each of these qualities of a Benedictine-informed life, he assists us to assess our own spiritual awkwardness, states of denial and compromise, lack of religious depth and avoidance of conversion. Whatever might be our failings or foibles, Jamison supports us in creating a meaningful and theologically grounded sanctuary for everyday living.? Catholic Studies?At one time, spirituality and religion were the same; not today. One can experience spirituality without being a member of a religion, and many have turned away from Christianity or other religions looking for some kind of spirituality that will make them feel good or give them whatever they need in life. Abbot Christopher talks about those who shop for spirituality and shows that religion and spirituality should not be separated. Abbot Christopher?s last chapter us on hope; the Rule of St. Benedict encourages all followers not to lose hope in life and, especially, in life everlasting. . . . Finding Sanctuary is highly recommended to those looking for more in life than the rat race.? Curled Up With A Good Book?Few will be able to simply read this book, but instead will find themselves absorbing it.? Writing Works
When St. Benedict wrote his ?little rule for beginners? in the fifth century, he could not have known it would shape the lives of religious men and women for more than fifteen hundred years. Offering instruction on prayer and community life, Benedict?s Rule espouses the values of humility, prayer, and hospitality that have marked the lives of Benedictines throughout the ages. Benedictines are those persons who commit themselves to the Rule of Benedict, and have been popes and widows, scholars and mystics and lay people from many religious traditions, including Catholics, Anglicans, Methodists, and Lutherans. They have lived in monasteries and ashrams, in busy urban centers, and in desert hermitages. Dedicated to God and the practices of the Liturgy of the Hours and monastic life, Benedictines have made significant contributions to chant, theology, and the preservation of spiritual works of literature and scholarship. Represented here is the work of major Benedictine figures throughout the ages, beginning with Pope Gregory?s account of the life of Benedict and arriving at recent statements by the Conference of Benedictine Prioresses on conflict in the world. Along with the Rule, the writing of these Benedictines remains as relevant today as in any age. ?Swan and Zagano?s book is a useful starting point for anyone seeking to explore the Benedictine tradition through selected primary texts with biographical introductions. It is accessible to readers of all backgrounds, and will urge them to launch out into other depths of discovery, where they will come to know more fully the author?s claim that ?Benedictine spirituality is enjoying a renaissance.?? S. Ephrem Hollermann, OSB Associate Professor of Theology College of Saint Benedict/Saint John?s University?Sr. Laura Swan?s The Benedictine Tradition is a lovely resource of Benedictine riches for anyone who desires to go more deeply into the nature of the Benedictine life of the spirit. From a 1500-year tradition, she has lovingly selected fourteen figures or groups, each representing a significant quality of Benedictine life. Each chapter begins with a quotation from Benedict?s Rule giving a clue to the quality for which this Benedictine is chosen. A very useful and helpful introduction to teach figure follows, along with some lovely selections from each one?s writings. I found myself slowing down as I read, to be nourished at leisure by the profound words of these persons committed to the Benedictine way. Sr. Laura closes with a chapter quoting from Benedictine prioresses as they reflect in writing on the monastic tradition in light of the demands of contemporary society. Those reflections offer a mirror for the whole of Sr. Laura?s book, which serves as a meditiation on how to be ?in but not of the world,? as a witness and sign of the love of Christ.? Norvene Vest Spiritual Director and Author ?Laura Swan?s eminently useful and enjoyable anthology fills an important gap in contemporary sources for the study of Benedictine spirituality. It stimulates a taste for the multiple, rich expressions of that fifteen century tradition and could well be a handbook for further study. This small volume includes a succinct historical overview of the tradition along with short biographies of some major teachers and writers as context for what can necessarily be only a few well-chosen, brief but substantial and often inspiring, selections from original text. I recommend it for college students, those beginning or renewing their monastic life, Benedictine oblates, and anyone looking for a sure guide to the basic but varied contour of Benedictine history and spirituality.? Katherine Howard, O.S.B. St. Benedict?s Monastery St. Joseph, Minnesota ?In her new book The Benedictine Tradition, Laura Swan has gathered together a very useful collection of readings. Since these selections are gleaned from her own practice of lectio divina, they will prove fruitful for the lectio of others. She has not contented herself with the usual well-known authors, but has ranged far and wide for her anthology. So we hear not only from Pope Gregory, but also from Raissa Maritain; not only from Venerable Bede, but also from Bede Griffiths. Finally , Sister Laura gives us more than little snippets; she gives us substantial excerpts for our spiritual nourishment.? Terrence Kardong, O.S.B. Assumption Abbey Richardton, North Dakota
We all need God, Sister Jeremy says in her first sentence, and readers of all sorts will find here a warm and practical address to that need. The monastic way is not forsaking the world, but for the sake of the world, and Sister Jeremy's Benedictine wisdom is fundamental human wisdom. Her book is the fruit of decades of practice, and the spiritual journey she recounts is nobody's but hers 'which makes it, paradoxically, something from which everyone can learn. I did is much more effective teaching than one might or you should.

There is nothing musty, cobwebbed, or nostalgic in these pages. Sister Jeremy, in her late 80s, is totally alert to the world around her and within us. She is allergic to sentimentality. Because she has spent so much time in silence 'she lived as a hermit for 20 years 'she is especially attentive to words and how like a chameleon they can be. Her antennae are sensitive to anything phony. Every sentence glows with her graceful and witty and hospitable spirit. She is an inspired teacher, a trustworthy guide, one of God's great ones. She shows how a monastic is not on a pedestal or behind a wall, but right in the thick of things with all of us.

Jeremy Hal, OSB, is a member of Saint Benedict's Monastery, St. Joseph, Minnesota. She holds a doctorate in theology from Marquette University. Currently retired, Sister Jeremy taught theology at the College of St. Benedict/St. John's University and School of Theology 'seminary, and at Creighton University. She is the author of numerous articles as well as The Full Stature of Christ(Liturgical Press). Sister Jeremy lived as a hermit for twenty years. During that time she gained renown as a wellspring of wisdom and gifted retreat leader.

In the fourth century, the deserts of Egypt became the nerve center of a radical new movement, what we now call monasticism. Groups of Christians-from illiterate peasants to learned intellectuals-moved out to the wastelands beyond the Nile Valley and, in the famous words of Saint Athanasius, made the desert a city. In so doing, they captured the imagination of the ancient world. They forged techniques of prayer and asceticism, of discipleship and spiritual direction, that have remained central to Christianity ever since. Seeking to map the soul's long journey to God and plot out the subtle vagaries of the human heart, they created and inspired texts that became classics of Western spirituality. These Desert Christians were also brilliant storytellers, some of Christianity's finest. This book introduces the literature of early monasticism. It examines all the best-known works, including Athanasius' Life of Antony, the Lives of Pachomius, and the so-called Sayings of the Desert Fathers. Later chapters focus on two pioneers of monastic theology: Evagrius Ponticus, the first great theoretician of Christian mysticism; and John Cassian, who brought Egyptian monasticism to the Latin West. Along the way, readers are introduced to path-breaking discoveries-to new texts and recent archeological finds-that have revolutionized contemporary scholarship on monastic origins. Included are fascinating snippets from papyri and from little-known Coptic, Syriac, and Ethiopic texts. Interspersed in each chapter are illustrations, maps, and diagrams that help readers sort through the key texts and the richly-textured world of early monasticism. Geared to a wide audience and written in clear, jargon-free prose, Desert Christians offers the most comprehensive and accessible introduction to early monasticism.
Amid the noise and distractions of everyday life, is it really possible to choose to love the world? In these times of great uncertainty and anxiety, how can we find God? Thomas Merton felt the urgency of these questions more than 50 years ago, and his reflections upon them are more relevant than ever.

One of America's most beloved mystics of the 20th century, Merton's voice was prophetic in the troubled era of the 1960s. In this new collection of thoughts and meditations selected from his most inspiring books and letters, Merton's radiant wisdom and foresight serve as a beacon of light for all of us searching to find true meaning and solace in today's difficult times.

"Father Louis," as he was known at the Abbey of Gethsemani, fully embraced the contemplative life of a monk, yet he never held the world at arm's length: "We and our world interpenetrate. It is only in assuming full responsibility for our world, for our lives and for ourselves, that we can be said to live really for God."

Sharply honest in his words but balanced by his poet's heart, Merton explores themes that include the inner ground of love, living in wisdom, and dialoguing with silence. He teaches that contemplation is possible for everyone and that the fundamental context for seeking God's presence is always our everyday lives.

"In the deep silence, wisdom begins to sing her unending, sunlit, inexpressible song: the private song she speaks to the solitary soul." In Choosing to Love the World, Thomas Merton inspires us to look deep within ourselves and, in the peaceful silence of contemplation, to find and sing our own song.

Edited by Jonathan Montaldo, associate director of The Merton Institute for Contemplative Living, and director of Bethany Spring, the Merton Institute retreat center in Trappist, Kentucky.

Gallileo, Copernicus, Newton, Niels Bohr, Einstein. Their insights shook our perception of who we are and where we stand in the world and in their wake have left an uneasy co-existence: science vs. religion, faith vs. empirical enquiry. Which is the keeper of truth? Which is the true path to understanding reality?

After forty years of study with some of the greatest scientific minds as well as a lifetime of meditative, spiritual and philosophical study, the Dalai Lama presents a brilliant analysis of why both disciplines must be pursued in order to arrive at a complete picture of the truth. Science shows us ways of interpreting the physical world, while spirituality helps us cope with reality. But the extreme of either is impoverishing. The belief that all is reducible to matter and energy leaves out a huge range of human experience: emotions, yearnings, compassion, culture. At the same time, holding unexamined spiritual beliefs–beliefs that are contradicted by evidence, logic, and experience–can lock us into fundamentalist cages.

Through an examination of Darwinism and karma, quantum mechanics and philosophical insight into the nature of reality, neurobiology and the study of consciousness, the Dalai Lama draws significant parallels between contemplative and scientific examination of reality. “I believe that spirituality and science are complementary but different investigative approaches with the same goal of seeking the truth,” His Holiness writes. “In this, there is much each may learn from the other, and together they may contribute to expanding the horizon of human knowledge and wisdom.”

This breathtakingly personal examination is a tribute to the Dalai Lama’s teachers–both of science and spirituality. The legacy of this book is a vision of the world in which our different approaches to understanding ourselves, our universe and one another can be brought together in the service of humanity.
"Inexorably life moves on towards crisis and mystery. Everyone must struggle to adjust himself to this, to face the situation for 'now is the judgment of the world.' In a way, each one judges himself merely by what he does. Does, not says. Yet let us not completely dismiss words. They do have meaning. They are related to action. They spring from action and they prepare for it, they clarify it, they direct it." --Thomas Merton, August 16, 1961

The fourth volume of Thomas Merton's complete journals, one of his final literary legacies, springs from three hundred handwritten pages that capture - in candid, lively, deeply revealing passages - the growing unrest of the 1960s, which Merton witnessed within himself as plainly as in the changing culture around him.

In these decisive years, 1960-1963, Merton, now in his late forties and frequently working in a new hermitage at the Abbey of Gethsemani, finds himself struggling between his longing for a private, spiritual life and the irresistible pull of social concerns. Precisely when he longs for more solitude, and convinces himself he could not cut back on his writing, Merton begins asking complex questions about the contemporary culture ("the 'world' with its funny pants, of which I do not know the name, its sandals and sunglasses"), war, and the churches role in society.

Thus despite his resistance, he is drawn into the world where his celebrity and growing concerns for social issues fuel his writings on civil rights, nonviolence, and pacifism and lead him into conflict with those who urge him to leave the moral issues to bishops and theologians.

This pivotal volume in the Merton journals reveals a man at the height of a brilliant writing career, marking the fourteenth anniversary of his priesthood but yearning still for the key to true happiness and grace. Here, in his most private diaries, Merton is as intellectually curious, critical, and insightful as in his best-known public writings while he documents his movement from the cloister toward the world, from Novice Master to hermit, from ironic critic to joyous witness to the mystery of God's plan.

Cistercian Spirituality: An Ashram Perspective is a spiritual directory written by Fr. Francis Acharya for the monastic community that he founded at Kurisumala (Kerala, India). As the editor, Fr. Michael Casey, relates in the introduction:
This book is offered to a wider world in the hope that it will serve as a means of making and deepening contact with the spirit of the Cistercian tradition not so much as it is written but as it has been lived for over six decades by a deeply spiritual man. To those who know of Kurisumala Ashram or who have read the biography of Fr. Francis, it will provide a gateway to an understanding of the interior life of this remarkable monk. In particular, his description of the stages of the experience of prayer will certainly be helpful to many who, like him, are lifelong seekers of the unseen God."

Francis Acharya, OCSO, left the Belgian monastery of Scourmont in 1955, after twenty years as a Trappist, to live his monastic life in India. His experiences put him in contact with such other pioneering spirits as Henri Le Saux (Abishiktananda), Jules Monchanin (In Quest of the Absolute), and Bede Griffiths (Return to the Centre, The Golden String), and led to an uncommonly successful inculturation of Christian monasticism within Indian culture and spirituality at Kurisumala, where he served as Acharya, teacher, until his death in 2001. His biography, Kurisumala: Francis Mahieu Acharya, A Pioneer of Christian Monasticism in India, is also published by Cistercian Publications.

"
We are quickly approaching the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation which by "most" accounts began in 1517 with Martin Luther's 95 Theses and was completed (or ended) in 1648 with the Treaty of Westphalia. Moreover we are also approaching the 700th anniversary of the end of the Knights Templar with the burning at the stake of the last Templar Grand Master Jacques de Molay in 1314. So what better time to review both as they interrelate to one another? Did you know that "pre-Protestants" such as the Waldensians were being burned at the stake 300 years before Martin Luther's 95 theses? Did you know that the Knights Templar and their mysterious disappearance most likely played a role in the protection/germination of the seeds that would lead to Protestantism? As my Masters of History thesis I was told to tackle a "challenging" subject that might even go against the "status quo" of established historicity; not only have I attempted to do this, but I was dumbfounded by some of the discoveries I have found along the way linking the Knights Templar to Protestantism 200 years earlier than Martin Luther. *Even more awakening is how applicable and necessary many of these "monk-like" themes are today in our increasingly post-Christian world. "The restoration of the church must surely depend on a new kind of monasticism, which has nothing in common with the old but a life of uncompromising discipleship, following Christ according to the Sermon on the Mount. I believe the time has come to gather people together to do this." - Dietrich Bonhoeffer James Stroud has undergraduate studies in both History and Religious Studies as well as post graduate studies in Theology/History at APUS, Trinity Seminary, Biola and the University of Arkansas. He currently resides in the New York City Area. (www.TheLollards.org)
©2019 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google|Location: United StatesLanguage: English (United States)
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.