Today I drove to Genesee Abbey. It’s one of my favorite haunts.I sat in the chapel quietly for almost an hour. I lost complete track of time. While at the Abbey I read a very interesting book, Christian Mystics: Their Lives and Legacies throughout the Ages by Ursula King. I found it difficult to put the book down. I read it while spending several hours at the Abbey. I felt comforted by what I read in the book. I’ve known for some time that I’m a mystic, but I forget that most of the time too. Ursula King has written this wonderful book and I highly recommend it especially to women. She covers Christian mysticism just about as well as I’ve seen it ever covered and it not full of theological terms. She does a great job speaking of the beginnings of Christian mysticism. She writes in detail of Origen, Irenaeus, Augustine and others. She talks in detail of all the women mystics like Catherine of Siena, Hildegaard of Bingen, Clare of Assisi, Simone Weil, Teresa Benedicta of the Cross and many others. She spends time speaking of the contributions of mystics from the Eastern Church. She speaks of the connection of Islamic and Christian mysticism and the connections between Christian and Hindu mystics. She writes of George Fox and in detail. She even wrote of John and Charles Wesley. Most people including Wesley’s wouldn’t include them in a discussion of mysticism but she did. Of course she writes in detail of Thomas Merton. It’s a great book.
I’ve done a lot of travelling and reading in the past two days and a lot of thinking in the past five or six weeks.Yesterday I drove 250 miles one way to Auriesville Shrine. I’ll write on more of that later. I got a nice photo today of the sunflowers that grow near the Abbey. I suppose the monks include them in their delicious sunflower bread. There must have been ten acres or more of sunflowers. They were beautiful.
christian, mystics, genesee abbey, ursula king
2 Replies to “Been away”
good that you are back, Don…you talk about darkness…”a dark night of the soul” perhaps? Maybe some reading from and about St John of the Cross would help you understand that darkness? In the last weeks I came closer to the carmelite spirituality. It is a spirituality of heart, like the franciscan one…for me they are complementary. May God grant you peace.
I’ve never read that book, but I’m no stranger to darkness. I’ve taken it to be a good sign, but frustrating nonetheless. Thanks for writing. Peace.
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