• Shedding the hectic in us

    • Aug 6, 2015

    “Writing is a form of contemplation.” — Thomas Merton, monk and spiritual writer “Writing is a form of praying.” — John Keats, poet “I’m not sure I could contemplate at all if it wasn’t for the fact that I have spent most of my life surrendering to the experience of

  • On a spiritual journey, it’s good to have a soul friend

    • Oct 15, 2014

    When Thomas Merton was master of scholastics at the Monastery at Gethsemani in 1962, he remarked that “everyone should get spiritual direction.” This was a wildly radical notion for its time. Back then, the only people who received spiritual direction — in the West, at least — were ordained clergy.

  • Day 2: Thomas Keating and Centering Prayer

    • Sep 15, 2014

    I do not feel better in the morning, actually. Here’s the schedule through Friday morning, when we’re done: 7 to 8 a.m. Meditate 8 a.m. Breakfast in silence 9:30 a.m. Death presentation and group discussion, where we get to talk, supervised 10:30 to 11:30 Meditate Noon: Lunch in silence 3:30

  • Day 1: I’m lonesome already

    • Sep 14, 2014

    Here’s how I spent my summer vacation: at a weeklong retreat in an old nun’s convent, in silence. The theme: Death and Dying, Life and Living. Not very upbeat, I know. I walk into the dining room Friday night, late for 6 p.m. dinner. I look around at 40 or

  • Want to try an online retreat? Here’s your chance

    • Sep 5, 2014

    If you’d like to try a retreat, at home, via iPad or laptop, here’s an opportunity. Starting Monday, Sept 8, “Care of the Soul” and “Soul Mates” author Thomas Moore, a former Catholic monk, begins a one-month online retreat called “Holy Fool.” The focus is on “lightening up” what may