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We embrace the process of transformation in Christ, both in ourselves and in others, through the practice of Centering Prayer.

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O Ever Emerging Dawn in This My Dark Night ...
Bridget Robinson
Voices of Community

O Lighthouse on hill of tears and mist
    a clearing to the path that leads to the
    inner cloister of Love in which I hope to abide

 

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
I Checked the Timer
Mary Purcell
Voices of Community

Some years ago a dear friend gave me a lovely chiming meditation timer encased in a wooden pyramid. You set the timer for the length of time you want to center, press a button, and a tiny red light comes on...

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Centering Prayer
My daily practice...
Barbara Sullivan
Voices of Community

Breath for the spirit,
Meditation for the mind,

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Centering Prayer
By Grace We Are Christ
Fionnuala Quinn O.P.
Voices of Community

For a few months I have been sitting with this wonderful quotation from Basil Pennington’s book on Centering Prayer. "By grace we are Christ. Our relationship with God is that of Christ to the Father in the Holy Spirit."

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Centering Prayer
Nothingness
Sydney S. Orr
Voices of Community

This place living in nothing is like my end,
my death,
and yet I truly feel it is more like the agony of my personality being a nothingness.

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
The Welcoming Prayer and "letting go of the desire for security, affection, and control."
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

I have a question about the Welcoming Prayer, related to "letting go of the desire for security, affection, and control." I say the prayer often during my daily encounters and frustrations and it brings great comfort and reminds me to "truly let go."

My question has to do with the conflict of letting go of these desires and yet setting future goals that include financial planning (security) and relationships (affection) that one would like to achieve in life. I truly believe God wants us to be happy and security and affection do include happiness. Can you please shed some like on this potential conflict?

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Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Posture and Breathing in Relation to Centering Prayer
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:   My impression is that some meditation practices have very specific guidance about physical technique such as posture, breathing etc. But Centering Prayer suggests fairly little except to have a comfortable upright posture (or lying down if you have back problems or are ill), the goal being to be relaxed but alert.  What accounts for the difference? I suspect it has something to do with Centering Prayer not being a concentrative or awareness method.

Maybe I'm asking because I'm less aware of mental/emotional thoughts in practice, and more aware of aches and pains. Maybe I'm asking because I can't believe that the method is so simple and that it is okay to trust it. "I should be working harder." I have been practicing Centering Prayer for  six  years or so.

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Centering Prayer
Holy Stone
Robert Brown
Voices of Community

On a visit to Ireland in June 2012, my wife and I visited Dingle, County Kerry. This Holy Stone, one of many on the Emerald Isle, sits in the street in front of a home.

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Centering Prayer
His Silent Valley
R.H. Burke
Voices of Community

It is another day in the Lord.
     I step from my room into the silence of the valley –
     an almost audible silence that is the language of God.

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Centering Prayer
Bringing the World Together
Betty Voigt
Voices of Community

We were enveloped in the spiritual power of these saints (Kevin, Bridget, Columba, etc.) as we touched the stones and walked on the grounds of long-ago monasteries, churches, sculpted high crosses, and round towers. 

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Centering Prayer
I wonder why so many clergy are not aware of contemplative prayer?
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  I wonder why so many clergy are not aware of contemplative prayer?  Even if they are, why don’t they share it with their congregations?

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Centering Prayer
Jacalyn's Psalm
Jacalyn Smith
Voices of Community

You gave me unique awareness
at a very young age
Before I could walk
I knew I was different.
    ~Your Light upon my head

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
It helps me remember ...
Barbara Kollenkark
Voices of Community

It can be a challenge to remember all those who have asked for our prayers. I wrote this poem 52 years ago while in the 5th grade, but continue to embrace it as I pray for others. It helps me remember . . .

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Centering Prayer
In his book, Open Mind, Open Heart, Fr. Keating says that divine union is not a free ticket to happiness in this life...Can you please explain...
Fr. Carl
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q: In his book, Open Mind, Open Heart, Fr. Keating says that divine union is not a free ticket to happiness in this life; that some people are left with mental/emotional/physical issues that they "suffer for some unknown purpose for the good of the whole human family." Can you please explain what this means?

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Contemplative Spirituality
When I am Among the Trees
Carolyn Goddard
Voices of Community

When I am among the trees,


especially the willows and the honey locust,


equally the beech, the oaks and the pines,


they give off such hints of gladness. . .

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Centering Prayer, The Practice of Contemplative Living
No words are needed
Linda Altritt
Voices of Community

The past two years my family has endured a devastating loss with the passing of my beloved sister. . .

One of the members of my prayer group inspired me to write about Centering Prayer.    

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Centering Prayer, The Practice of Contemplative Living
"We acknowledge that any good accomplished by CO is the work of the Holy Spirit"
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q: This is about the wording of the Contemplative Outreach Theological Principle 16 - "We acknowledge that any good accomplished by CO is the work of the Holy Spirit". It is the word 'good' that bothers me. It is a value judgment word that means different things to different people. How do we judge what is good, and if it is not good, what is it?
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Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
A Summary of the First International Symposia for Contemplative Studies
Ronald L. Barnett, Ph.D.
Other

The purpose of the symposia was "to bring together academics and other interested persons for presentation, discussion and networking in the fields of contemplative basic science, contemplative clinical science, contemplative philosophy and humanities, contemplative education, and those domains of research and scholarship" (MLI).

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
Blessings from Behind the Bars: Centering Prayer in Prison
Rev. Mikail Davenport
Voices of Community

In 2006, my late wife, Kate, four other psychotherapists, a cognitive behavioral trainer, and myself began a program at Travis County Correctional Center in Austin entitled LifeTools©. It provided psychological, cognitive behavioral, and spiritual direction for over 200 men until 2009, when the program ended.

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Centering Prayer, Prison Ministry
silence
verserver
Voices of Community

let us go adore him
let us go implore him
my soul
to make us whole

let us stop
and just drop
all attractions

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey
Feeling Nothing
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q: After many years of Centering Prayer and feeling that I was just where I should be, things have changed for me. When I go to prayer there is nothing but thoughts, thoughts, thoughts. And I am thinking, "Who am I fooling? Myself? ...

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Centering Prayer
Q&A with Fr. Carl Arico ~ Meditation and Centering Prayer
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q: One of the new people in our Centering Prayer group asked me what the difference between meditation and Centering Prayer is. …

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Centering Prayer
Recognition: “It is the Lord” Jn 21:7
Mary Agnes Rawlings, LCSW
Voices of Community

Thought for today:   I cannot follow what I can not see!

Question for contemplation:  Am I “seeing” my life with eyes formed by the Word or by the World?

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The Practice of Contemplative Living
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico Archive Related to the Spiritual Journey
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  I saw a notation by Fr. Keating about Heaven right here on earth.   Does this take away the hope of a better place to go when I die?

A:  Not at all. Heaven is being in the presence of the almighty and loving God for eternity - a living and ongoing presence...

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Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico Archive: Related to Centering Prayer
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q. Can you provide a connection for me between Centering Prayer and The Cloud of Unknowing?

A. :  I would recommend you study the pamphlet on Centering Prayer by Fr. Thomas Keating...

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality

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