Author Topic: western spiritual writers  (Read 1695 times)

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Offline romuald

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western spiritual writers
« on: April 03, 2006, 07:45:07 PM »
Greetings all. Blessed be the Lord.

Give me your opinions of the following western spiritual writers:

Thomas a Kempis

Teresa of Lisieux

Teresa of Avila

John of the Cross

Ectetera

What elements did you find missing, overexaggerated, or headed down the wrong direction? If you read them for insight into the spiritual life, how did negative elements affect you? What beneficial elements did you find, and how did you profit from them? Give specifics related to the texts and not generalizations about the western tradition.

Grace and peace,

Romuald

Offline montalban

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Re: western spiritual writers
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2006, 07:36:54 AM »
Greetings all. Blessed be the Lord.

Give me your opinions of the following western spiritual writers:
....
Ectetera

His writings aren't easy to find. However several people refer to his works as in

"I like the ideas of great German thinkers; Schopenhauer, Gegel, Nietzsche, Kant, etc."

Therefore we can see that Ectetera is put in the same class as some of the greatest thinkers of Germany.

I've looked on amazon.com, bn.com, abbeys.com.au and none stock any of his work.

Incidentally one of his descendants makes wallets...
http://www.amazon.com/gp/search/104-7885385-3054331?%5Fencoding=UTF8&search-alias=apparel&field-brandtextbin=l.%20etc.



Fàilte dhut a Mhoire,
tha thu lan de na gràsan;
Tha an Tighearna maille riut.

Offline Arystarcus

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Re: western spiritual writers
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2006, 06:58:14 PM »
Greetings all. Blessed be the Lord.

Give me your opinions of the following western spiritual writers:

Thomas a Kempis

A number of years ago I read "The Imitation Of Christ" and I found it to be quite edifying. Your asking about it was a nice reminder for me to re-read it.

If you've not yet read it, I'd say give it a whirl and let us know what you think.  :)

Online Asteriktos

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Re: western spiritual writers
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2006, 08:03:41 PM »
Unfortunately, as far as western spiritual writers with a mystical/contemplative flavor to their thoughts, I've only read three or four books by Basil Pennington. Not having any prior experience with western contemplative material, it's hard to say much about it. It came down on the decidedly liberal/ecumenical side, and sometimes seemed to intentionally incorporate Eastern Christian practices, though I couldn't say much more than that.
"Well, do I convince you, that one ought never to despair of the disorders of the soul as incurable? ...For even if thou shouldst despair of thyself ten thousand times, I will never despair of thee" - St. John Chrysostom

Offline romuald

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Re: western spiritual writers
« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2006, 10:48:13 AM »
Yeah, Basil Pennington, Thomas Keating, Menninger et al, are all from the same Trappist monastery, and have invented Centering Prayer. I practiced this method for a year and ended up with some horrible effects. Since then I have repented of their nonsense. I have compared their books to the Cloud of Unknowing and have found this significant difference: they place an emphasis on reaching certain psychological states to produce an awakening of consciousness, and unlike the CoU, this happens through mere natural practice, rather than through the infusion of the Holy Spirit, despite their denial of it. The end goal is too focused on man: there is constant evaluation of internal phenomena and its psychological consequences. It is just another meditation method that is based on Far Eastern religions. Indeed Keating et al admit their strong influences from Buddhism.

I am waiting for an Orthodox critique of the (traditional) Catholic spiritual writers and mystics. What are your observations?

Grace and peace,

Romuald


Offline augustin717

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Re: western spiritual writers
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2006, 12:08:23 PM »
In Romania, "The Imitation of Christ" is very often issued at the publishing houses of various Orthodox archdiocese or dioceses.
The same is true for a certain book about Our Lady, written by St. Norbert, the founder of the Premonstratensian order.
"I saw a miracle where 2 people entered church one by baptism and one by chrismation. On pictures the one received by full baptism was shinning in light the one by chrismation no."