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Centering Prayer: Renewing an Ancient Christian Prayer Form Paperback – August 17, 1982
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The author presents the concept of centering prayer in a simple format, clearly outlining and explaining the history, status and principles of this ancient, but recently revitalized tradition. We are reminded continuously that faith is a gift from God; our ability to pray depends upon our willingness to "rest in the Lord." We are called to empty ourselves and allow God to enter our hearts and our souls. Drawing on a number of sources, including Thomas Merton, Thomas Keating, Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross as well as the anonymous author of "The Cloud of Unknowing," Father Pennington offers a simple, cogent discussion of the various aspects of prayer.
Even beyond the text, this book is an invitation. It is an invitation to open oneself to God and the gift of grace. It's neatly arranged chapters offer the reader the opportunity to reflect upon the nature of prayer and reference it frequently as needed. As one progresses in the way of centering prayer, this book is a simple, yet invaluable resource.
I wish to respond to some negative comments made by other reviewers. One has written that the book contains about one page of instruction on Centering Prayer and 200+ pages of history and theology. This is not quite true, as Fr. Pennington focuses a great deal on the mundane, practical elements of Centering Prayer. While he does make extensive reference to historical writings, I think that is for the best. The technique of Centering Prayer is extremely simple, yet it can be difficult to understand why one should do it and how one should integrate the fruits of Centering Prayer in to the rest of one's life. The thoughts of centuries of Christians who have practiced it or something like it are insightful in this regard.
Another reviewer suggests that it is rooted not in Catholicism but in Eastern spiritual practices. Fr. Pennington specifically refutes this view and emphasizes that Centering Prayer has Christian roots. Indeed, he commends Centering Prayer to the many Catholics and other Christians who have found techniques such as Transcendental Meditation lacking and want a spiritual practice of their own religious tradition. While he obviously admires people of all religious persuasions, his sources are the Bible, saints of the Catholic Church, and other Christian writers.
Before picking up this or any other book on Centering Prayer, please note the following: Centering Prayer is not a means of instantly assuring oneself an extraordinary experience of God. As Fr.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a wonderful book on centering prayer! I encourage both new and experienced centering prayer practitioners to check it out.
What happens during centering prayer? Read more
I started this little book and it was like God was speaking to me. Smart chap that I am, I shut up right away!
Doggerland (Volume 1)
Sometimes we need a little direction in our prayer life. This book is just one of many that helps.Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
Rapidly delivered. Excellent product. I am very satisfied.Published 23 months ago by Br Andrew Thome
If you want a simple, concise introduction to Christian Meditation, this is for you. I picked up a copy
of this book 25-30 years ago and began to practice meditation. Read more
Centering prayer is a new prayer form developed by the trappist monks Thomas Keating, Basil Pennington and William Menninger designed to facilitate contemplative prayer and... Read morePublished 24 months ago by Greg
A well written and Clear WORK. Just what I needed to encourage me to attend a centering prayer class. I also purchased the centering prayer audio cd book.Published on March 28, 2014 by James W. Morgan