Poustinia: Christian Spirituality of the East for Western Man

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9780877930839: Poustinia: Christian Spirituality of the East for Western Man

Poustinia The modern spiritual classic for those seeking the open heart and listening soul of a silent contemplation.
Poustinia, a Russian word, means desert , a place to meet Christ in silence, solitude and prayer. Catherine Doherty combines her insights into the great spiritual traditions of the Russian Church with her very personal experience of life with Christ.

Men and women who desire communion with God can discover how the poustinia powerfully fulfills their yearning. Readers are invited to leave the noise and harried pace of daily life to enter a place of silence and solitude. Catherine writes from her own experience with refreshing and startling Christian authenticity and a strong personal sense of spiritual authority.

Catherine emphasizes poustinia of the heart, an interiorized poustinia, a silent chamber carried always and everywhere in which to contemplate God within. Learn how our desert can be in the marketplace, in the midst of countless conferences, traffic jams, bus trips or a hospital ward. Written by one who knows by experience, Poustinia brings consolation with its vision of a personal desert that can bloom in simple, profound prayer.

A timeless best-seller, published in 16 foreign editions around the world, Poustinia won the prestigious French Academy Award. The experience of poustinia has become a worldwide phenomenon following its publicity through this popular book.

Read by Father Émile Brière, a priest of Madonna House who is eminently suited for this oral presentation, since he was at the author s side from the very beginning of her inspiration to bring this spirituality to the Western world from her native Russia. Father Brière brings to the reading his own experience of living as a poustinik in his later years, and his deep understanding of Poustinia allows him to draw out the full meaning of Catherine s words. 6 CDs (compact discs), 5 hrs. 30 mins. Extended abridgement.

Le informazioni nella sezione "Riassunto" possono far riferimento a edizioni diverse di questo titolo.

About the Author:

Catherine Doherty used her heritage as a Russian Christian as a matrix for responding to the needs of Christian life and work in the modern world. Her own personal pilgrimage led her to be poor with the poor Christ in the slums of Toronto and in Harlem; and later to the establishing of the world-wide Madonna House Apostolate. A dedicated wife and mother, Catherine was also a prolific writer of hundreds of articles, a best-selling author of dozens of books, a renowned national speaker, and a pioneer of social justice. Catherine Doherty s cause for canonization as a saint is now under consideration by the Catholic Church.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Dan Herr, publisher of the Critic, once said, Retreats are out... deserts are in! Perhaps I am being presumptuous in thinking that his gentle little arrow was partially directed at me. But I havent noticed too many other people on the North American continent writing about deserts or going to them.

For the last few years I have been talking and writing a great deal about silence, solitude, and deserts, and I will continue to write about them because I think they are vitally important to our growing, changing, technological, urban civilization. It is obvious that humanity is facing many problems, will have to face many more, and that these problems are deeply disturbing the souls of all men. It is just as certain that we cannot, must not, reject the new, strange, adventuresome, frightening world that is opening before us, and is already with us.

Especially we Christians cannot do this, because Christ has inserted himself into this world and we are his people, his body; and so we belong as he does to this world of computers, to this world of cybernetics, that daily brings vaster problems before our minds, hearts and souls. For science moves faster and faster, so much faster than the men of todayor even the men of tomorroware able to apprehend, comprehend or assimilate.

At the same time, this world of science, together with the spiritual renewal, invites man (the center of creation) to an experience of the liberty of the children of God seldom known before. Now, man can have an encounter with reality and can truly rise to the very sourceto the Origin that has no origin. For the mystery of men in the midst of the world, nature, technology, and urbanization, is intrinsically a Divine Mystery.

Yet it is still on the cross that God reveals himself to this scientific, technological civilization of ours. As usual, he is both close and distant. As usual, he reveals himself through what is not himself, so that even modern man can recognize the fullness of truththe image of God manifested in the world and its temporality. But it is to be understood that this Mystery, first of all, is not found in the world as such. It is found and seized upon in the hearts of men who seek him, who dont deny his existence. It is because man is fundamentally spiritopen to the absolute of the Divinethat he is always dissatisfied, in one manner or another, with all created reality. Nature is not divine. It is only a sign of God, a cry toward God.

It seems strange to say, but what can help modern man find the answers to his own mystery and the mystery of him in whose image he is created, is silence and solitudein a word, the desert. Modern man needs these things more than the hermits of old. If we are to witness to Christ in todays marketplaces where there are constant demands on our whole person we need silence. If we are to be always available, not only physically, but by empathy, sympathy, friendship, understanding, and boundless caritas, we need silence. To be able to give joyous, unflagging hospitality, not only of house and food, but of mind, heart, body and soul, we need silence. True silence is the search of man for God. True silence is a suspension bridge that a soul in love with God builds to cross the dark, frightening gullies of its own mind, the strange chasms of temptation, the depthless precipices of its own fears that impede its way to God.

True silence is the speech of lovers. For only love knows its beauty, completeness, and utter joy. True silence is a garden enclosed, where alone the soul can meet its God. It is a sealed fountain that he alone can unseal to slacken the souls infinite thirst for him.

True silence is a key to the immense and flaming heart of God. It is the beginning of a divine courtship that will end only in the immense, creative, fruitful, loving silence of final union with the Beloved.

Le informazioni nella sezione "Su questo libro" possono far riferimento a edizioni diverse di questo titolo.

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Catherine de Hueck Doherty
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