I recommend the following books, courses and web sites to learn more about centering prayer, contemplative prayer, Jesus and the Bible.
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Amos Smith’s new book is out!
Be Still and Listen: Experience the Presence of God in Your Life is currently $6.99 in Kindle.
Also by Amos Smith, Healing the Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots
What is Rich Reading?
I am currently reading Sinners in the Hands of a Loving God: The Scandalous Truth of the Very Good News by Brian Zahnd.
Our friend, Marc Shaw at Contemplative Light has a new book out, Dante’s Road: The Journey Home for the Modern Soul .
Amato, Nicholas. Living In God: Contemplative Prayer and Contemplative Action. (Enjoy my review.)
Amato, Nicholas. Moving from Stress to Joy
Bass, Diana Butler. Grateful: The Transformative Power of Giving Thanks
Bass, Diana Butler. Grounded: Finding God in the World-A Spiritual Revolution (Enjoy my review.)
Bourgeault, Cynthia. The Heart of Centering Prayer: Nondual Christianity in Theory and Practice. (Enjoy my review.)
Finley, James. Christian Meditation.
Freeman, Laurence. Jesus the Teacher Within
Freeman, Laurence. First Sight: The Experience of Faith
Frenette, David. The Path of Centering Prayer: Deepening Your Experience of God. (Enjoy my review.)
Funk, Mary Margaret. Tools Matter: Beginning the Spiritual Journey (The Matters Series)
Heuertz, Christopher, The Sacred Enneagram: Finding Your Unique Path to Spiritual Growth
Heuertz, Phileena, Pilgrimage of a Soul: Contemplative Spirituality for the Active Life Heuertz, Phileena, (Enjoy my review)
Jelenek, Frank (Author), Boyajian Ann (Illustrator). Journey to the Heart: Centering Prayer for Children.
Johnson, Jan. Meeting God In Scripture: A-Hands-On Guide To Lectio Divina. (Enjoy my review.)
Keating, Thomas. Intimacy with God: An Introduction To Centering Prayer. (Enjoy my review.)
Keating, Thomas. Open Mind, Open Heart, 20th Anniversary Edition.
McColman, Carl. Befriending Silence: Discovering the Gifts of Cistercian Spirituality. (Enjoy my review.)
Meninger, William. The Loving Search for God.
Miller, Shelly. Rhythms of Rest: Finding the Spirit of Sabbath in a Busy World. (Enjoy my review.)
Paintner, Christine Valters. Illuminating the Way: Embracing the Wisdom of Monks and Mystics. (Enjoy my review.)
Paintner, Christine Valters. Eyes of the Heart: Photography as a Christian Contemplative Practice. (Enjoy my review.)
Paintner, Christine Valters. The Soul of a Pilgrim: Eight Practices for the Journey Within.
Paintner, Christine Valters. The Soul’s Slow Ripening: 12 Celtic Practices for Seeking the Sacred
Pennington, Basil. Centering Prayer: Renewing an Ancient Christian Prayer Form. (Enjoy my review.)
Reynolds, Stefan Gillow. Living with the Mind of Christ: Mindfulness in Christian Spirituality. (Enjoy my review.)
Sanders, E. P. The Historical Figure of Jesus
Yamasaki, April. Four Gifts: Seeking Self-Care for Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength
Centering Prayer is a silent prayer practice that can move you toward a profound relationship with the Spirit of God within. It is a way of praying that opens the door to the Divine Indwelling—the ground of our being. With Centering Prayer, Father Thomas Keating and his colleagues Gail Fitzpatrick-Hopler and Father Carl Arico present the first online course in this method for deepening your intimacy with God and ultimately consenting to the presence and action of the Divine in all aspects of your life.
The Contemplative Journey (Volume I) is Father Thomas Keating’s great masterwork: a complete curriculum devoted to a Christian path for achieving the still point of resting in God.
Learn More About:
- The complete history, theory, and daily practice of Centering Prayer
- What the medieval saints knew about resting in God
- The sacred word that revitalizes your prayers
- How to heal the irrational drives that can sabotage your spiritual growth
The Contemplative Journey (Volume II) is Father Thomas Keating’s great masterwork: a complete curriculum devoted to a Christian path for achieving the still point of resting in God.
Learn More About:
- The four elements essential to your spiritual health
- Three on-the-spot questions to diagnose core troubles
- How to overcome deeply ingrained habits with prayer
- Mastering the three essential human relationships
- The true purpose of marriage
- How to use Centering Prayer as a spiritual antibiotic
David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer re-energized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings. This companion audio program—created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide—gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.
Following the Mystics Through the Narrow Gate – Three leading voices in the contemplative Christian tradition explore the mystic’s path: Richard Rohr, James Finley and Cynthia Bourgeault. Experience a very special weekend conference with teachings that guide us through the long mystical tradition from early Christianity to our own time. This view into our mystical heritage opens our hearts to the Divine Mystery in which we live and are surrounded. The mystical union to which we are all invited strengthens us to live our lives with compassion and gratitude.
The Enneagram and Grace: 9 Journeys to Divine Presence by Richard Rohr and Russ Hudson – Fr. Richard Rohr and Russ Hudson offer a deep study of the Enneagram as a powerful spiritual tool. The Enneagram has become many things to many people, but its roots are profoundly spiritual and are based in the studies of the Desert Fathers, the world’s first Christian monastics. At its core, the Enneagram addresses the question of how we fail to recognize the presence of Grace in our lives. It helps us see the psychological issues that cause us to forget the Divine Presence here in each moment.
The Cosmic Christ by Richard Rohr – In this teaching, Fr. Richard gives profound insight into the nature of the historical Jesus and what the resurrected Christ really means. We are reminded that the material and spiritual worlds are part of the same universal reality. As the Body of Christ, we are all called to participate in relationship with the Divine Trinity.
On Encountering the Wisdom Jesus, this brilliant author and dynamic Episcopalian priest presents her first full-length audio course about rediscovering the Master of Wisdom. Twelve immersive sessions cover: the parables as wisdom tools; Jesus’s teachings about kenosis (or self-emptying: a path as radical today as it was 2,000 years ago); Jesus as tantric master; Centering Prayer, an approach to meditation as Jesus lived it, and much more. The early Christians, teaches the Reverend Cynthia Bourgeault, were afire with the spirit of Jesus, inspired fully by his teaching of a total transformation of consciousness. How do we reclaim that fire today?
Contemplative U: A Transformative Learning Community – Contemplative U was created by Dr. Tom Bushlack in order to share the fruits of contemplation with others.
Since the time of the Desert Fathers in the third century, Finley begins, Christian mystics have practiced meditation as a way of opening to the direct presence of God in daily life. Legendary seekers such as Saint John of the Cross, Saint Teresa of Avila, and Meister Eckhart explored how meditation can lead us beyond the closed horizon of the ego, to an interior and holy refuge that is always available to us. On Christian Meditation, James Finley offers a gentle introduction to this all-transforming way of life, and the ever-deepening realization of oneness with Christ it leads us to. (Based upon his book, Christian Meditation.)
Thomas Merton’s Path to the Palace of Nowhere: The Essential Guide to the Contemplative Teachings of Thomas Merton – Now James Finley, who for six years lived, prayed, and studied with Brother Louis, as Merton was known at the Abbey of Gethsemani, shares with us the gifts passed on to him by this towering figure.
The Teachings of Meister Eckhart: An Invitation to Experience God in Every Moment: The 13th-century mystic Meister Eckhart was the most brilliant Christian scholar of his day, but he was also legendary for the way that he opened listeners to the direct experience of God during his public talks. Today, his written wisdom remains alive as ever, ready to illuminate us. James Finley, one of today’s best-known teachers of the Christian contemplative tradition, invites us into Eckhart’s insights in the same way that this luminary teacher delighted in sharing them—through the spoken word.
How might your life change if you were steeped more deeply in the wisdom of the Christian Mystics? Drawing on the best available writing on the topic of Christian Mysticism both ancient and modern, Contemplative Light is offering a special course on the Christian Mystics Sacred Lives: An Introduction To The Christian Mystics.
The Divine Transformation: Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to a comprehensive introductory through intermediate level course on both practice and perspectives of these timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.
Contemplative Practices: 5 Ways of Consenting to the Divine – Learn methods practiced by Christian mystics for centuries to consent to the action and presence of God within, including Centering Prayer, The Examen, Lectio Divina, Christian Meditation, and the Jesus Prayer.
Writing as a Spiritual Practice: This course helps you to access the rich spiritual stories that lie deeply within you. Words are powerful. The words that you write can be used to:
- help you understand yourself better – and therefore divine God’s purpose in your life
- facilitate healing of spiritual wounds
- minister to others more effectively
- share your testimonies of how God has worked in your life
If you read devotionals, you already know how they can be a true blessing. A devotional can uplift you when you’re feeling discouraged, sad or lonely. It can allow you to feel a keen sense of fellowship with another Christian, even if the two of you never actually meet. And, if you are feeling called to write devotionals, know that you have a unique opportunity to bless others and make a genuine difference in their lives. This course takes you step by step through the process, and then guides you towards publishing, if that is your goal.
A Daily Spiritual Seed – This daily (M – F) e mail message provides information, guidance and support on Christian spirituality using quotes from various Christian authors. A Gospel meditation and additional spiritual growth resources are also included in each daily message.
Carl McColman – Explores prayer, silence and wisdom of the mystics
Center for Action and Contemplation – The Center for Action and Contemplation seeks to empower individuals to live out their sacred soul tasks in service to the world through contemplative programs and resources.
Contemplative Light – Contemplative Light is an evolving project in the early stages of development.
Contemplative Outreach – Contemplative Outreach is a community of individuals and Centering Prayer groups committed to living the contemplative dimension of the Gospel in everyday life.
Contemplative Prayer – Father William Meninger, developed a contemplative prayer method based on the 14th century classic, The Cloud of Unknowing, leading to a prayer method called Centering Prayer.
Exploring Belief – A safe space to discuss how nursing the terminally ill has affected your own life. Silent Prayer can help play an important role in this process.
Gravity – A center for contemplative action.
J. Brent Bill – Brent is a writer, photographer, retreat leader, and Quaker minister.
Marc Thomas Shaw – Explores contemplative spirituality and everyday mysticism.
Recover Christianity’s Mystic Roots – Amos Smith and I explore the five roots: Centering Prayer, Jesus Paradox, New Monasticism, Christian Mysticism and Nonviolence.
Shalom Place – It’s purpose is to provide a variety of resources that encourage and support Christian spiritual practice. As such, it is an online spirituality center — a place where you can find retreats, workshops, books, handouts, worksheets, and a community of kindred spirits who are seeking to grow in Christ.
The Contemplative Society – Contemplative Society is an inclusive non-profit association that encourages a deepening of contemplative prayer based in the Christian Wisdom tradition while also welcoming and being supportive of other meditation traditions.
The Contemplative Way – James Finley, Ph.D. lived as a monk at the cloistered Trappist monastery of the Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky, where the world-renowned monk and author, Thomas Merton, was his spiritual director.
The Wisdom Way of Knowing – On this site you’ll find a treasure trove of resources and teachings by Cynthia Bourgeault including a list of her Key Offerings, an overview of the Wisdom Way of Knowing model, information about Wisdom Schools, an introduction to Wisdom Essentials including foundational practices and tools, and connection to our Communities of Practice, including leaders and members of the community and links to various organizations in the Wisdom Network.
The World Community for Christian Meditation – The World Community teaches the Christian tradition of meditation.
Thomas J. Bushlack, Ph.D. – A site devoted to sharing the fruits of contemplation with others by creating spaces for spiritual practices to give way to practical wisdom and compassionate action, through a variety of creative media – from traditional publishing to online learning, plus blogging, podcasting, and guided meditatio