Author: Marc Thomas Shaw

A Spiritual Retreat In Book Form

The book traces the Jungian idea of the archetype as manifested in different Christian saints and mystics over the centuries with exercises for personal reflection and transformation. Each chapter provides a brief overview of the particular figure and archetype, such as Catholic social worker and activist Dorothy Day as The Orphan, Mary as The Mother, and St. Francis as The Fool.

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Abiding In Silence

After some amount of contemplative practice, and maybe even a deeper awakening experience, we tend to notice how much of our energy is handed over to thoughts, to mind-stuff. After a while, we notice all of it, everything outside of the pure silence is mind stuff, thought forms of one level of another.

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A Delightfully Foolish Little Book

Book Review: The St. Francis Holy Fool Prayer Book by Jon Sweeney

There’s a little book on St. Francis I’ve been dipping into lately. No, I don’t mean the Little Flowers of Saint Francis, but good guess!

I mean Jon Sweeney’s delightful The St. Francis Holy Fool Prayer Book that I’ve kept on my desk for the past couple weeks just to sample from like a candy box when I’m in between tasks or waiting for a response or some such.

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A Contemplative Lie?

The mystic Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee writes that we go through different stages in the contemplative life, through times of expansion and contraction. There are times when we experience God’s feminine side, of grace, forgiveness, and mercy, and there are times we experience his masculine side, his power and magnificence, and stand in awe.Part of our task on this journey is to integrate these two aspects of our spirituality into a unified whole. Part of that is learning to become alert and responsive to the moment we find ourselves in.

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A Radically Contemplative Christmas

When I was in college I played Santa every year. My family lived overseas and sent me the Christmas list since US prices were a lot cheaper for consumer goods.Once I got home as the only one who knew who was getting what, I’d wrap most of the presents, even dress up and hand out the presents Christmas morning. It was a family tradition.

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4 Movements Of Divine Love

One definition of contemplation is simply resting in the presence of God. One of the first steps in the contemplative life is learning to cultivate the inner witness, the neutral, non-judgmental observational awareness of our inner state.The affect this process has on us is an awareness of the way in which we (and everything else around us) is held in this kind of loving gaze. It’s as if, magically, detaching from the judgmental, evaluative tapes we usually have running allows a wellspring of gracious acceptance to bubble up.

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