Go Deeper On Your Spiritual Journey

Books on Christian Mysticism, Celtic Wisdom, and More

NEW FOR 2019: Now available! An Invitation to Celtic Wisdom draws on myth, folklore, poetry, and the tales of Celtic saints and heroes, to explore the spiritual tradition of the Celtic peoples — a tradition rooted in hospitality, love of nature, and a mystical sense of the presence of God. The Celtic way is more important […]

Walking in Wonder: This Book of Conversations with John O’Donohue is Everything You Hope It Would Be

“So the spiritual life is about the liberation of God from our images of him,” said John O’Donohue. This is just one of the many nuggets of wisdom that await you when you read this wonderful new anthology of interviews with the late Irish poet and mystic John O’Donohue. Walking…… Read more at Patheos

Rebecca Bratten Weiss: Silence, Feminism, and Literature (Episode 42)

This week’s episode marks the one-year anniversary of Encountering Silence! Our pilot episode was released a year ago today. It seems appropriate, therefore, that on this first-year anniversary, we release an episode that marks a new “first” for us. Not only is it the first time we’ve interviewed Catholic author, philosopher and feminist Rebecca Bratten … Continue reading Rebecca Bratten Weiss: Silence, Feminism, and Literature (Episode 42) → … Read more at Encountering Silence

Are Art and Mysticism Two Sides of the Same Coin?

I’ve been thinking about the relationship between contemplation and creativity. This is inspired in part by the many contemplatives who are also artists. We see this in the past — think of William Blake, or Johann Sebastian Bach, or of course poets like John of the Cross and Thomas Merton.…… Read more at Patheos

Dear Listeners, Help Us Spread the Word About Silence!

We live in a world that is getting noisier and noisier. More and more people recognize that we need silence, not only for our spiritual well-being, but for psychological, creative, and even physical wellness. But for many of us, silence is elusive. We struggle with noise — both outside and within. And many of us … Continue reading Dear Listeners, Help Us Spread the Word About Silence! → … Read more at Encountering Silence

An Ocean of Light — Martin Laird’s Must-Read New Book on Contemplation

Rejoice, my friends. The author who is arguably our most eloquent and learned living authority on Christian contemplation — at least in the western church — has released a new book. And it’s a gem. Martin Laird’s An Ocean of Light: Contemplation, Transformation and Liberation combines the author’s lyrical, accessible…… Read more at Patheos

David Cole: Celtic Mysticism and Silence (Episode 41)

How does silence impact the rhythms of our lives — including the rhythm of prayer? How can we invite silence into our lives, in both structured and unstructured ways? Joining us to explore questions like these — from the New Forest of England — is the award-winning author, teacher and spiritual guide David Cole. Intentional … Continue reading David Cole: Celtic Mysticism and Silence (Episode 41) → … Read more at Encountering Silence

Seven Contemplative Artists/Creators Who Deserve Your Support via Patreon

Like many bloggers and other creatives, I rely on Patreon to fund my blog. Patreon is a crowdfunding website which allows people to support artists and other creatives whose work they love. But since today is “Giving Tuesday,” I’d like to talk about some other creators on Patreon who I think you…… Read more at Patheos

Three Wonderful Julian of Norwich Books

I’m not sure why the fall of 2013 belonged to Julian of Norwich (except to the extent that any time is a good time for reading and reflecting on Julian’s wisdom). What I do know is that three wonderful books about Julian were published that fall. If you’re already a…… Read more at Patheos

Devotional Reading for the Three Celtic Lents

Previously I have written about how, in ancient times, Celtic monks observed three “Lents” — which is to say, three forty-day periods of fasting, prayer, and sacrifice, in preparation for three sacred moments in the year: The actual season of Lent (forty days prior to Easter) A summertime “Lent” (forty…… Read more at Patheos

If Mystical Christianity is Shamanistic, then the Divine Office is the Drum

For years, I have thought that one of the best ways to understand Christian spirituality is by the study of shamanistic forms of spirituality and religion, typically found among indigenous cultures the world over. Wikipedia defines shamanism as “reaching altered states of consciousness in order to perceive and interact with…… Read more at Patheos

God is Love — and Love is a Story

If the 1959 plane crash which claimed the lives of Buddy Holly, the Big Bopper, and Ritchie Valens marked “the day the music died” — as Don McLean put it — then I think we could make a case for November 12, 2018 being the day the stories died. For…… Read more at Patheos

Christine Valters Paintner: Silence, Art, and Contemplation (Episode 40)

Christine Valters Paintner — an American expatriate living in the west of Ireland — joins us on Encoutering Silence to explore the intersections of silence, spirituality, contemplation, creativity, and living as a monk in the real world. Author, poet, spiritual director, and Benedictine Oblate Christine Valters Paintner serves as the online Abbess at www.AbbeyoftheArts.com, a … Continue reading Christine Valters Paintner: Silence, Art, and Contemplation (Episode 40) → … Read more at Encountering Silence

Judith Valente: Silence, St. Benedict, and Writing (Episode 39)

Judith Valente is a poet, a journalist, a Benedictine oblate, and the author of books including Atchison Blue: A Search for Silence, a Spiritual Home, and a Living Faith and How to Live: What the Rule of Saint Benedict Teaches Us About Happiness, Meaning and Community. Her books of poetry include Discovering Moons and The Art of Pausing: Meditations for the … Continue reading Judith Valente: Silence, St. Benedict, and Writing (Episode 39) → … Read more at Encountering Silence

Day of a Stranger: Forthcoming Movie Reveals a Hidden Side of Thomas Merton

Here’s a trailer for a forthcoming short film about Thomas Merton and the hermitage he lived in at the end of his life. Take a few moments and watch this. It’s a treat. And be sure to watch it to the end. “Most human speech is devised to evade being,…… Read more at Patheos

Dialogue with a Druid (About the Relationship Between the Mystical Life and Faith Community)

On Facebook recently I engaged in a dialogue with a reader named Aaron who commented on my post Letting Go of (Our Limited Image of) God. This reader describes “druidry” as “his main private practice,” although he remains connected with progressive Christianity as well. Our conversation explores the idea that sometimes,…… Read more at Patheos