Against ‘Lived Experience’

The relative knowledge that resides in the intelligence and its intellections is said to stimulate our longing for the real knowledge attained by participation. This real knowledge, which through experience and participation brings about a perception of what is known, supersedes the knowledge that resides in the intelligence and the intellections.(Maximos the Confessor: Fourth Century... Continue Reading →

Focus On (More Than) Your Breathing

Mindfulness is one of the most popular meditation practices in the West and it is very secular by nature.(Giovanni Dienstmann: Practical Meditation) Mindfulness is acceptance(Padraig O'Morain: Mindfulness on the Go) Our lives are like a film, and we are the stars of the story.(Terri Kozlowski: Practical Ways to be More Present and Aware to Live... Continue Reading →

Read Old Books! And Do So Slowly

He was allowed two books a week from the prison library. In the first week of his sentence he read both books through in one day, devouring them with the swift efficiency that he gave to all his business matters. He finished that day with the restless, nervous fatigue that he had come to regard... Continue Reading →

Love Your Enemies

How happy we were when a military postcard, or even better, a letter arrived from Reinach! He was stationed in the vicinity of Verdun. In one letter he once sent us each a snowdrop. He had picked them himself, and they were still fresh when they arrived.(Life in a Jewish Family, Edith Stein; Chapter VII)... Continue Reading →

In Defence of (a sense of) Sin

“God help us!” said Holmes after a long silence. “Why does fate play such tricks with poor, helpless worms? I never hear of such a case as this that I do not think of Baxter’s words, and say, ‘There, but for the grace of God, goes Sherlock Holmes.’”(The Boscombe Valley Mystery: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)... Continue Reading →

Concealed Entrance

For a while now The Great Stoppage had been replaced by the Slow Reawakening. Life had visibly and audibly resumed something akin to its habitual rhythms. John Delacroix experienced this as a kind of loss and not, as apparently he was supposed to, as a definite gain, a victory even. During the stoppage he had... Continue Reading →

Say His Name!

You don't need a horoscope or a microscopeTo see the mess that you're inIf you open up your heartYou will know what I meanWe've been polluted so longNow here's a way for you to get cleanBy chanting the names of the Lord and you'll be free(George Harrison) A young monk was anxious about the eternal... Continue Reading →

Of Peaceful Havens and Mind Palaces

'In this town it's a long time between breakfasts' (Brigadoon, 1966 TV Version) 'The Legend of Brigadoon' began as a Broadway musical and went on to become an Hollywood film. It tells the story of two Americans who stumble into a small Scottish town which, every hundred years, springs into existence for a day and... Continue Reading →

Each Life Matters

Three word slogans where the words are chosen to fit the mood of the time can have great mobilising potential. In the United Kingdom 'Take Back Control' and 'Get Brexit Done' had the power to win a referendum and an election respectively. 'Peace, Bread, Land,' and 'Liberty, Equality, Fraternity' played their part in stupendous revolutionary... Continue Reading →

Dæmon Haunted Minds

Lovely thoughts came flying to meet me like birds. They weren't my thoughts. I couldn't think anything half so exquisite. They came from somewhere. (Lucy Maud Montgomery, Emily Climbs) ...the war which the demons wage against us by means of thoughts is more severe than the war they wage by means of material things. (St... Continue Reading →

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