Reflections on the various dimensions of feminine vocation from liturgical homemaking and child rearing to education and the spiritual life.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Books to Help Quiet and Heal the Soul

for E. A. O.

Sleeping with Bread is a great place to begin a soul quieting; it very simply and accessibly guides individuals and groups in contemplative prayer and self-knowledge.  The authors base their simplified approach on the classic examen of Saint Ignatius of Loyola. 

In the quiet place of our soul, we can steep ourselves in the overwhelming love of God.  Anchoress Dame Julian's work is a classic which simply yet profoundly heightens awareness of God's all-permeating love.  Shakespeare, T. S. Eliot, and so many others pull the famous phrase from Julian: "All shall be well . . .  All manner of thing shall be well." 

In The Art of Prayer anthology, we learn that there is nothing more important than prayer in the life of faith.  Many short passages from various church fathers elucidate the nature, methods, ends, and benefits of prayer.

From a prayerful place we can let the healing trickle from the spirit to the psyche.  Dr. Barrs, a Nazi concentration camp survivor, combines Thomistic theology with a Christian view of psychology to teach us how to understand and integrate our feelings. 

A conversation of Saint Seraphim of Sarov with N.A. Motovilov: A wonderful revelation to the world is a another book centering the soul in the heart of God.  Saint Seraphim gives instruction on how to acquire the Holy Spirit, a daunting and mystical topic to be sure!

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