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The Ignatian Workout: Daily Exercises for a Healthy Faith Paperback – June 1, 2004

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Editorial Reviews


"A thoughtful, clever, and very practical introduction to Ignatian spirituality."
--J. A. Appleyard, S.J., Vice President for University Mission and Ministry, Boston College

"The Ignatian Workout is a valuable contribution to contemporary writing on Ignatian spirituality. Muldoon does a fine job of illustrating just how relevant this spirituality is for today’s young adults."
--J. Michael Sparough, S.J., Director of Charis Ministries Ignatian Spirituality for Young Adults

From the Back Cover

Get Fit Spiritually

 We look at the world—and at God—in drastically different ways than our ancestors did, and yet the wisdom of a sixteenth-century Catholic saint perfectly suits our doubtful, antiauthoritarian, pluralistic age. St. Ignatius of Loyola believed that we could know God better by paying attention to his work in our lives, our experiences, our imagination, and our feelings. His Spiritual Exercises, an enduring masterpiece of spiritual insight, teaches us to grow spiritually by learning to respond in concrete, practical ways to this divine presence.
    The Ignatian Workout presents St. Ignatius’s wisdom in today’s language—as a daily program of “workouts” to achieve spiritual fitness, tailored to people with busy schedules. It is a program that shows us how to recognize and respond to a God who is already at work in us, inviting us into a deeper relationship and into richer lives of love and service.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Loyola Press (June 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0829419799
  • ISBN-13: 978-0829419795
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #319,776 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Kearney VINE VOICE on March 17, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Author Tim Muldoon begins the introduction of his book THE IGNATIAN WORKOUT with an observation: the busiest time at athletic complexes on college campuses is after the spring break when people realize the summer is near and the need to shed winter pounds before bathing suit season becomes urgent. He's familiar enough with college campuses as a student and later as a professor at Mount Aloysius College (where he taught when he wrote the book) and now at Boston College. He believes this is a somewhat futile activity, and uses his own training as a member of a crew team to show that the best way to exercise is to begin slowly, remain committed, and work toward a goal. He believes the same principles can be applied to the spiritual life and expands his ideas in the book.

The book is an introduction to the spiritual life based on the writings of St. Ignatius. He gives some basic insights into prayer then has four sections or "workouts" which are modified versions of the thirty day retreat. The key to getting the most from the exercises is perseverance and Muldoon believes that the workouts can be a springboard to a deeper spiritual life. He also includes a bibliography pf some wonderful books for further reading and includes some of my own favorites in his list: Margaret Silf's THE INNER COMPASS, James Martin SJ's IN GOOD COMPANY, Thomas Merton's THE SEVEN STOREY MOUNTAIN, and Gerard Hughes' GOD OF SURPRISES. He also includes websites for Creighton University and Sacred Space which have great materials and a list of retreat houses. Readers have more than an abundance of suggestions to deepen their spiritual life after reading.

Muldoon's writing style is engaging and the book should have a broad appeal.
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59 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Diana H C Tan on July 1, 2005
Format: Paperback
The Ignatian Workout
Daily Spiritual Exercises for a Healthy Faith
ISBN: 0-8294-1979-9
Publisher: Loyola Press (...)

A new form of physical workout? Judging from the book cover and its head title (sans the sub-title), this book could well be perceived as a new method of physical workout. The cover features a man walking briskly on what seems like hot dry desert space. When I was reading this book on the train to work, I felt like the other commuters who had casually glanced my way would figure that I was reading a health book. Perhaps they're thinking I was trying to lose weight!

Tim Muldoon, the author, uses the image of rowers hard at practice to explain the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuit order in the Catholic Church. Here the author presents the Four Weeks of the Spiritual Exercises in simple layman and contemporary language. It is beautiful how he works the spiritual jargons into modern language and how he uses the nuances and practices of men who spent much time to perfect their craft of rowing. I think this is a creative way to make the Spiritual Exercises more readable and understandable. The essence of the Spiritual Exercises remains as St. Ignatius taught, that is, bible passages are given for reflection but the contemplative stance has a modern flavour to it.

If you care for a spiritual workout in layman's terms, pick this book up. Have a happy journey!
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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Glutton for books on August 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
The Spiritual Exercises designed by Ignatius of Loyola in the 1500s were designed to help Christians discern God's presence in their lives and they reputedly help clarify decision-making process, by bringing people closer to God's voice. Despite the fact that these exercises were designed more than four hundred years ago, it has taken the world's writers about that amount of time before developed a written guide to the exercises that allows us to replicate them in our own homes.

Ideally these exercises are taken under the guidance of a spiritual director. Traditionally, people used to withdraw from society for a month to dedicate their lives to nothing but the exercises and listening for God's direction. Some very fortunate people still can afford the luxury of unemployment for a month and indulge in this type of direction. Some Catholic religious orders require the retreat before their members commit themselves to membership by vows. However, for most of us normal working Christians, decent spiritual direction is hard to find. I tried to do a local version of the exercises, that lasted several months, meeting with a spiritual director as a group once a week, but the spiritual directors kept canceling on the group and then changing, which made it difficult to develop rapport. If you find yourself in a similar situation, Tim Muldoon's book is the next best thing to a private retreat designed for a person who can't leave the world full-time to listen to God.

I thought the organization of the spiritual workouts was not very clear, which is why I rated the book "four" rather than "five" stars. During the Spiritual exercises, people meditate on a scriptural passage every day at the same time, for at least 30 minutes.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Paul M. Dubuc on October 17, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've been using this book to guide me in the spiritual exercises. The author does an excellent job of making the Ignatian exercises accessible (without watering them down so as to make them ineffective) to modern Christians who seriously want to grow and strengthen their faith. Not for Roman Catholics only. This book will be very useful for all Christians.
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