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Mysticism

The Message of Jesus

During the Fall of 2015,  I was teaching a class on mysticism, and the question was raised, what are the central teachings of Jesus? Is Jesus a mystic? What are the ingredients for a genuine Christian life? These questions are important...

/ December 8, 2015

What is Zen?

In his book, , written 1961, Thomas Merton describes the nature and essence of Zen, mostly in the first chapter. He also examines various Christian monastic traditions in order to show us the similarities and differences in the search for mystical experience...

/ November 24, 2015

Western Mysticism – A Timeline

This page covers people and movements in the tradition of Western mysticism, from the early Greek period to about 1700. It is arranged chronologically, and it’s purpose is to give a short overview of Western mysticism with links to other websites. As much...

/ October 4, 2015

Thomas Merton

 “Thomas Merton (1915-1968) is arguably the most influential American Catholic author of the twentieth century. His autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain, has sold over one million copies and has been translated into over fifteen languages. He wrote over sixty other...

/ December 20, 2012

Meister Eckhart – Sermon on True Hearing

ECCLESIASTICUS xxiv. 30.—”Whoso heareth Me shall not be confounded.” THE everlasting and paternal wisdom saith, “Whoso heareth Me is not ashamed.” If he is ashamed of anything he is ashamed of being ashamed. Whoso worketh in Me sineth not. Whoso...

/ December 10, 2012

Merton: Life, Death, and Zen.

Tomas Merton writes in the foreword to his book [amazon text=Zen and the Birds of Appetite&asin=081120104X], 1968, shortly before his own death: “Where there is carrion lying, meat-eating birds circle and descend. Life and death are two. The living attack the...

/ July 10, 2012

Al-Hallaj

Al-Hallaj(c. 858 – March 26, 922) was a Persian writer and teacher of Sufism. His full name was Abu al-Mughith al-Husayn ibnMansur al-Hallaj. Biography He was born around 858 in Tur, Iran to a wool seller. Al-Hallaj’s grandfather may have...

/ November 18, 2011

Meister Eckhart

Meister Eckhart is a frequently-quoted German medieval theologian and mystic. He is popular in new-age environments and among spiritual seekers, but some of his statements can be interpreted as pantheistic, and therefore the Catholic Church always had some problems with...

/ November 18, 2011

Mysticism

You are made in the image of what you desire. To unify your life unify your desires. To spiritualize your life, spiritualize your desires. To spiritualize your desires, desire to be without desire. Thomas Merton, Firewatch, p. 55

/ November 8, 2011