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Into the Silent Land: The Practice of Contemplation
on 25 November 2010
I have been more at the type of Christian Worship for many years which is very full in terms of singing, extempore prayer, preaching, etc. and I have been richly blessed through it. However, for sometime I have realised that there is a dimension missing - that of quietness and stillnes and simply allowing God to fill me. Sometime ago I attended a series of talks by a Benedictine Monk and whether his very practical approach to the religious life was a stimulus I am not sure. However, I started reading a range of books the general theme of which was in the realms of contemplation and meditation. Some books were very helpful but many missed the point for me in either being too theoretical or, more often, assuming a particular religious background or knowledge which was very different to my own.
My search was, therefore, for something that would pick me up from where I am - give me something of the background and history of contemplation but, at the same time, be very practical. This books fits that brief for me. When I first started reading it, I had doubts as it seemed to be more theoretical than I had hoped but, having flicked through the coming chapters of the book to see what was coming,I was hopeful and so it proved to be. A whole raft of practical, proven techniques are provided which have certainly helped me. What is also to the credit of the author is that where he is slightly at odds with others who have published in the same field he not only says so and explains why, but also describes other options so these can still be tried to see of they are of benefit as he makes the point very clearly that this is a persoanl journey.
Overall I have found it a very worthwhile read. It has taken me sometime to get through it as I wanted to practise a little of what I was learning before I moved on. I shall now leave a gap and then read it again and go one step futher in what I do practically.
If you fit my sort of situation then I am sure you will not be disappointed.