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The Imitation of Christ (Dover Thrift Editions) Paperback – September 18, 2003
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Amazon is NOT clear on the version of the book you are purchasing; when on the DOVER VERSION in amazon, purchases made in the paperback mode provide the specific version I wanted; but also wanting the Kindle version it showed it was available in that version. However, once you choose the Kindle version, it brings you to another screen where the cover is different. I did no pick up that subtlety initially and purchased via ebook what I though I purchased in paperback form. They should not show the Dover Version with a choice of Kindle version unless the Dover Version is what is being delivered to my Kindle. BAD AMAZON!
I was very pleased to see these new leather zip-cover versions, as I've gone through a couple soft cover versions with daily wear and tear, in and out of the backpack, etc. There are two versions in these similar covers, two different translations by two seperate publishers. The one pictured here is my personal favorite, published by TAN, it is the same trusted and true old translation that is found in the beloved old 'Confraternity of the Precious Blood' versions.... that familiar little blue soft-covered version with stunning b&w detailed pictures to meditate upon as you read. This version was originally translated from Latin by Richard Challoner D.D., and is more true to the original translation. Though it is written in an older style of proper English, it is easy enough for most people to comprehend, and the older writing style has much artistic, poetic charm that is often times lost in some of the newer 'up-to-date' English translations. Remember, this is the second most translated and published book in history next to the Holy Bible! The other new leather zip-cover version available now looks nearly identical to this, but rather than a Cross on the front cover, it has a 'Chi Ro' design and omits the authors' name. This version, equally impressive, is put out by the Catholic Book Publishing Co., and is the same translation (edited by Clare L.Fitzpatrick) that is available in the small red hardcover version that is quite popular by the same publisher. This too is an excellent version, but the translation is much more modern and more readable by the everyday layperson, or anyone who wishes to hear this timeless wisdom in a more easily accessible version without the 'thee's, thou's, and shall's" of the aforementioned version. It's personal preference, example...
first line of the TAN version = "He that followeth me, walketh not in darkness," ..... as opposed to the CBPC's version, "No one who follows Me will ever walk in darkness." (John 8:12).
~But, to be truly enlightened and touched by these timeless words of wisdom of the Spiritual Life, I reccommend buying both versions, and absorbing both as to get a better understanding of these holy and guiding words. There are those who may say that A' Kempis's writings are 'not for everyone', as most of his writings were written to give guidance to the young novitiates of his monastic order where he served as Novice Master for a time, but please do not let that turn you away from the holy and life changing power of his spiritually uplifting direction that still speaks to many today. If you have any call to any form of holiness, or just want to enhance and reinvigorate your daily spiritual life, there is no way that you can go wrong with Thomas A 'Kempis and this, his most well known and loved body of work.
Timely and deeply challenging, this book has stood the test of six centuries and remains a treasure of spiritual guidance. Intended especially for those in religious life, it remains useful and provocative to lay persons as well.
One of its themes, the forsaking of the world for love of God, complements without contradicting the more recent spirituality of St. Josemaria Escriva, which highlights the importance of finding God in one's ordinary activities, "in the middle of the world". These two perspectives together offer much food for contemplation.
The final section of "Imitation of Christ" deals with the Eucharist, and sheds light on the orthodox Catholic devotion which formed the author's faith.
A must read for any Christian who wants to walk more closely to Christ.