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Personal Writings (Penguin Classics) Paperback – January 1, 1997

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Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Latin

About the Author

Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556) was trained as a page at the court of Castile. Wounded at the siege of Pamplona in 1521, he underwent a deep conversion, eventually travelling to Jerusalem and beginning to study. He attracted like-minded students and in 1534 they took vows and formed the 'Society of Jesus', popularly known as the Jesuits. From 1540 he was elected Superior General and lived in Rome, organising the astonishing spread of the Jesuits. He was canonized in 1622.

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Product Details

  • Series: Penguin Classics
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; 1St Edition edition (January 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140433856
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140433852
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 1 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #204,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Mark Burke on June 15, 2000
Format: Paperback
Saint Ignatius was a Basque military officer from Loyola, a great saint, and the founder of one of the most influential religious orders in world history: the Society of Jesus(the Jesuits). His personal writings reveal a truly gentle, emotional man who gave up all the pleasures of nobility to become a poor, wretched pilgrim for the sake of Christ. His Reminisces recounts all the main events of his life, from his bravery in the battle that left him crippled for life, to his conversion in his recovery bed, and finally to his founding of the Jesuit order. His journal reveals his spirituality and describes his mystical experiences, his letters reveal his patience, wisdom, and kindness, and his tremendously popular Spiritual Exercises gives advice on how to dedicate your life to God and see His action all around you. Ignatius's writings resonate with the tender devotion and the firmness of purpose found only in the writings of the Saints. Reading this book, one can see the guiding hand of Providence in the life of Ignatius and in the history of the Church, a hand that can use even the worst sinner to bring a shattered world back to His Son.
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21 of 30 people found the following review helpful By OverTheMoon on September 2, 2006
Format: Paperback
If you are looking for a common and useful type of Catholic spiritual exercise, you should know first that the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola may be a bit too dense and problematical for what you want. Many people like to pretend that they can do them on their own without an experienced Jesuit to monitor them. That is a 'new age' invention. It has nothing to do with how these exercises are actually praticed by those who hold the rightful ownership over them, namely the Jesuit order in full communion with the Holy See.

I would instead point you in the direction of The Divine Office (also called The Liturgy of the Hours) as a very wholesome and progressive type of daily prayer that is recommended to all the laity around the globe by the Holy See. The Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola are certainly more than a little too heady and intense because of its meditations on topics like sinners in hell. I would recommend that you maybe read through the Spiritual Exercises and try to answer the questions without too much spiritual intensity (using more reason and logic than feelings) or adopting the extreme environmental settings that Jesuits would undertake in doing them. As laity you are not supposed to be doing these on your own anyway. After talking to a Jesuit, I found out that the exercises are not for everybody and the person undertaking the exercises, needs supervision. This can not be understated. Anything to the contrary would be a brand new invention by the reader.

God is love. Christianity without love is not Christianity.
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By R. S. Arthur on February 12, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A superb new translation of some old favorites. The problems of the world are nothing that cannot be encountered with a soldier's discipline and a saint's faith. This is the first book I recommend to people who want to understand Jesuit spirituality after reading Martin's "The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything".
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