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Are there Two Paths to Holiness?


Are there Two Paths to Holiness? The other day while doing research for a blog post, I came across a discussion about Teresa of Avila’s Interior Castle in a Catholic forum. One poster wrote that a holy priest told her that Teresa of Avila’s teaching was not meant for most lay people. This is the sort of comment that perturbs me. If the conversation hadn’t been a few years old, I would... Read More

What is the “Prayer of Simplicity”? (Part III of III)

November 18, 2013 by  
Filed under Contemplation, Prayer


…a reader asks: Q: Dear Father John, I’ve heard that the prayer of simplicity is a kind of a bridge from meditation to contemplation. Can you help me to understand what this experience of prayer might be and how one might know that God is leading them down that path?   In the first part of this post, we discussed mental prayer in general, meditative mental prayer and the unity underneath... Read More

Questions about contemplation

October 15, 2011 by  
Filed under Centering Prayer, Contemplation, Dan Burke, Prayer


The encounter of contemplation is such an unexpected and memorable experience, shouldn’t one be content with leaving it to God if it would ever be repeated? I see people trying centering prayer, Taize prayer, etc. to try to achieve it. It somehow seems wrong to try to ‘get’ something that’s purely a gift. Is acquired contemplation the same experience as infused contemplation? Books... Read More

Fire Within by Father Thomas Dubay – Book Recommendation


Fire Within: St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, and the Gospel–On Prayer by Father Thomas Dubay Fire Within by Father Thomas Dubay Fire Within by Father Thomas Dubay is a fantastic and engaging work of synthesis and systematization of the thought of St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross on mystical contemplation. One of the more encouraging aspects of this book is the truth... Read More

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