Open Mind, Open Heart: The Contemplative Dimension of the Gospel

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9780826406965: Open Mind, Open Heart: The Contemplative Dimension of the Gospel

This book is designed to initiate the reader into a deep, living relationship with God. Written by an acknowledged spiritual master, the book moves beyond "discursive meditation and particular acts to the intuitive level of contemplation." Keating gives an overview of the history of contemplative prayer in the Christian tradition, and step-by-step guidance in the method of centering prayer. Special attention is paid to the role of the Sacred Word, Christian growth and transformation, and active prayer. The book ends with an explicit treatment of the contemplative dimension of the gospel. Open Mind, Open Heart will take readers into a world where God can do anything, into a realm of the greatest adventure—"Where one is open to the Infinite and hence to infinite possibilities.">

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Review:

First published in 1986 and in print--and immensely popular--ever since, Open Mind, Open Heart, by the Trappist Monk Thomas Keating, remains one of the best introductions to a specifically Christian form of meditation. Father Keating gives the reader an overview of what contemplative prayer both is and isn't; he discusses the history of contemplative prayer in the Christian tradition and then explores step by step the process of Centering Prayer, briefly exploring its origins in the ancient church and then demonstrating its use as "a sign of one's intention" to surrender to God. Each chapter concludes with questions and answers that provide useful information in an informal context. Here in particular we get a sense of Keating's clarity--and his sense of humor. For example, in response to a question about the sudden experience of happiness in prayer, Keating responds, "You should not take prayer too seriously. There is something playful about God. You only have to look at a penguin ... to realize that He likes to play little jokes on creatures." --Doug Thorpe

About the Author:

Father Thomas Keating is known throughout the world as an exponent, teacher, and writer on contemplative prayer. A Cistercian (Trappist) monk of St. Benedict's Monastery, Snowmass, Colorado, he is a founder of the Centering Prayer Movement and of Contemplative Outreach. He is the author of numerous books, particularly of the trilogy Open Mind, Open Heart; Invitation to Love; and The Mystery of Christ. Among his most recent books is The Daily Reader for Contemplative Living, compiled by S. Stephanie Iachetta.

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Thomas, O.C.S.O. Keating
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