Amos' Blog:


An Eternal Conversation about Things That Matter 10-13-2017

Parker Palmer said “truth is an eternal conversation about things that matter.” The intent of my work is not to conclude the conversation about Jesus, but to keep it going in the most vital sense.

Teachers know that just as every cell has a wall, every subject has authentic boundary lines. Staying within those lines protect the sacred conversation. These parameters don’t confine us. They liberate us to plumb the depths and get to know our subject with greater and greater intimacy.

Every committed relationship has responsible boundaries, which allow the relationship to deepen and blossom. Conversation about Jesus also has parameters. When respected, these parameters draw us deeper into the mystery. The Alexandrian Mystics (Alexandrian Fathers) knew all the magic happens in the interplay between the Divinity and the humanity (The Jesus Paradox).

For more on the Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics see my first book, Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots.


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Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

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The Game Changer 10-05-2017

Along with Richard Rohr,I think Jesus was the first prominent non-dualistic thinker in the West. And, generally speaking, the West hasn’t known what to do with him. The West doesn’t understand his essence or his thinking.

The East apprehends Jesus’ paradoxical essence. The East understands the incarnation with more depth and subtlety than our dualistic “in two persons” Western theology. For the Oriential Orthodox tradition Jesus could never be “in two persons,” which is tragically dualistic. For the Oriental Orthodox, Jesus is “one united dynamic nature: at once God and human.” This is the Jesus Paradox (Miaphisite in Greek).

We need something we can trust in an ultimate sense, somewhere to turn when our health fails, when our job falls through, when our loved one dies. The mystics affirm there’s no relationship, community, belief, or form of prayer we can completely trust. Nothing is worthy of our trust, nothing but the person of Jesus.

In The Philokalia, Gregory of Sinai (d. 1346) puts it well: “Behold your liberation, which is Jesus Christ, the redemption and salvation of souls. . . who is both God and man (human).”[1] Jesus: God’s dynamic human form—the prize of the mystics—the game changer—paradoxical, active, a moving target.[2]

[1] Palmer, et al, The Philokalia Vol. 4, 234.

[2] May, The Awakened Heart, 189, 198.


this post may contain affiliate links

Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

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New Vocabulary for a New Mind

Our thinking is only as large as our vocabulary. There were no English words for “non-violence” or “non-dual” until after World War II. Before then these concepts didn’t exist in English. The East has had words for “non-violence” and “non-dual” for hundreds of years. But only recently did these words appear in English.

The word Miaphysite is virtually unknown in the West. Yet, it holds the key to unlock doors in our minds, which can return depth and breadth to our theology. Interestingly, non-violence, non-dual, and Miaphysite are all connected. All these terms introduce a new mind. It’s not an either/or mind. It’s not a win/lose mind. It’s a holistic mind with untold depths, ultimately apprehended in what The Early Mystics call “blessed stillness.”[1]

When the mind is still and focused beyond any sensory distractions it plumbs the mystery of our pre-fallen state in Christ—of our Original Nature.  And for Christians that mystery has a word: Miaphysite.

Miaphysite, also known as The Jesus Paradox, changes the way we see. It takes us beyond the limitations of conventional religion into a larger world of imagination and possibilities. It takes us beyond dualistic thinking and the subtle and gross forms of violence that follow. It takes us into the light of Christ, which excludes no one, and whose parables turned either/or dualisms on their head.

 

[1] There are references to “blessed stillness” throughout The Philokalia. See Palmer, et al, The Philokalia Vol. 2, 317.


this post may contain affiliate links

Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

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The Root Theology of Christian Mysticism 09-24-2017

My core truth about Jesus isn’t rooted in mainstream Western Christian tradition. It is rooted in Jesus’ essence, best preserved by the Alexandrian Mystics (Alexandrian Fathers).

Jesus as taught by the Alexandrian Mystics is about the deep stillness of silent prayer and a theology big enough to give that blessed stillness words. The psalmist says, “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). The container for intimate stillness and communion with God is Jesus. The Alexandrian Mystics give us words that encompass infinite God and finite humanity, that reverberate in heaven and on earth.

The Jesus Paradox is the distilled essence of the Alexandrian Mystics—the resolution of the Jesus tug-of-war. Its truth convicts my soul, yet doesn’t require me to leave my reasoning mind at the door.

The phrase “Jesus Paradox” (or Miaphysite in Greek) stretches my reasoning mind to its limits and makes room in my heart for the world. For “God so loved the world” (John 3:16a). The Jesus Paradox doesn’t stop short of the world, its many people and religions. It’s broad like the mystics, making room for the sacred heart of God and for our rough and tumble world rife with despair, brokenness, and war.


this post may contain affiliate links

Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

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Rooted in the Incarnation while Respecting Other Religions 09-15-2017

The Jesus Paradox articulates a primal orthodoxy while respecting other religions.

The Jesus Paradox (referred to as Miaphysite in the Oriental Orthodox Church) acknowledges Christianity’s unique root—the Incarnation. At the same time it respects the revelations of other World Religions.

The Jesus Paradox humbly acknowledges that God is available in other forms aside from the human form.

The time has come for authentic faith in Jesus that acknowledges pluralism as part of God’s plan—as part of God’s revelation in history. The alternatives to this balanced approach are religious fascism on the one hand or eclectic new age experiments on the other.

For more on the Jesus Paradox see my first book, Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots.


this post may contain affiliate links

Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

Join Amazon Channels Free Trial

Bare-bones Mystical Theology of Jesus Part 2 09-08-2017

If Christianity is going to be remade it can’t be remade around hot-button political issues, political correctness, environmentalism, trends in philosophy, an inclusive mind-set, or a charismatic leader. It has to be remade in the image of Christ conceived in the minds of the mystics.

Nothing substitutes for experience of the person of Jesus through deep prayer. Yet, that experience needs an accurate lens, leaving room for both conviction and mystery. The Alexandrian Mystics (Alexandrian Fathers) temper conviction so it becomes “paradoxical certitude.” They also temper mystery, helping us to understand that mystery isn’t the result of missing data. It’s the result of a fullness we can never fully comprehend. The Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics is the foundation and hope for Christianity’s future.

Orthodoxy as it’s usually understood (especially in the West) defends the five “fundamentals”: virgin birth, biblical inerrancy, substitutionary atonement, the bodily resurrection, and the imminent return of Jesus. Yet, this orthodoxy hasn’t served to unify Christians, because few agree on these particulars. We need a more primal mystical root, which can unify Christians. We need a more basic orthodoxy which can heal the abscesses in the worldwide communion. That root is the Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics. For more on the Jesus Paradox see my first book, Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots.

this post may contain affiliate links


Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

Join Amazon Channels Free Trial

Bare-bones Mystical Theology of Jesus 09-02-2017

Over time, progressive Christianity has been less and less interested in creedal statements. But if there isn’t some orthodox standard around the person of Jesus, the whole progressive enterprise will succumb to questionable innovations.

Theology of Jesus is the measuring rod of orthodoxy. Once there’s resolution about Jesus, then there’s a foundation upon which to anchor the Twenty-first Century Church, in all its breadth.

My hope is the emerging Christian paradigm will learn from our Oriental Orthodox sisters and brothers about Jesus’ essence. My hope is that theologians won’t deviate so far from orthodoxy so as to become unrecognizably Christian. The Jesus Paradox is the anchor for the Oriental Orthodox Church. I assert here that it is also the anchor for contemplative Christianianity and progressive Christianity. For more on the Jesus Paradox, see my first book, Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots.

this post may contain affiliate links

 

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon his book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

Balanced Theology 08-24-2017

Today religious people are plagued by too narrow a pursuit of orthodoxy on the one hand or dispensing with orthodoxy altogether on the other.

If the theologian defines orthodoxy too narrowly she succumbs to exclusive trains of thought, which are subtle forms of violence. If, on the other hand, the theologian throws her hands up and claims ultimate unknowability, she betrays her faith tradition and leaves the gate open for any imposter.

If there’s no measuring rod of faith, no banks to the river—that faith, that river, will begin to become indistinguishable from the surrounding landscape. And eventually the river will be no more. This is the ultimate threat of new age phenomena—that culture will influence faith for the worse, rather than faith influencing culture for the better.

this post may contain affiliate links

 

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon his book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

The Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics 08-16-2017

The Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics (Alexandrian Fathers) has the power to heal divisions in the Church. The Jesus Paradox can bring primal cohesion to worldwide Christianity.

The Nicene Creed brought cohesion to the early Church. But, now mainline Protestant churches in particular have drifted far from The Nicene Creed. They need some primal anchor, more basic and more far reaching than creedal statements of the past.

The church schism between Rome and Alexandria at the Council of Chalcedon (451) and all subsequent church schisms point back to our essential understanding of Jesus. If we can at least come to common ground about Jesus, there’s hope for deeper ecumenism in the coming centuries.

May The Jesus Paradox of the Oriental Orthodox Church be the yeast in the loaf. It will take time to knead it through the dough. But eventually it will gain prominence, because it conforms to the Spirit of truth more than the partial truths that now abound. To learn more about The Jesus Paradox see my first book, Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots.

this post may contain affiliate links

 

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon his book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks

Monastic Authority of the Alexandrian Mystics 08-11-2017

Jesus may be elusive and mystifying. Jesus may be obscured by centuries of calcified interpretations. Yet he remains Christianity’s fulcrum. And at one point or another, if we take our faith seriously, we have to submit to one authority or another on the person of Jesus. Here I resonate with the words of the desert mystic Evagrius: “He who prays is a theologian; and he who is a true theologian truly prays.”[1]

What convinces me of the Monastic Authority of the Alexandrian Mystics (Alexandrian Fathers) is that they truly prayed and experienced God firsthand. They did not experience God secondhand through books, classes, and workshops. Mystics like Athanasius of Alexandria swam in the ocean of God. They didn’t read about God perched in their living room. They ardently watched over their souls in desert solitude. Athanasius wasn’t only an archbishop, he was also a monk. And his identity as a monk came first! This is evident from early images of Athanasius with a monk’s hood. In the third century only monks wore hoods. The unique genius of the Alexandrian archbishops from Athanasius on is they were monks and theologians first. The clerical titles and positions were secondary.

The Alexandrian Mystics not only plumbed the depths of theology. They also plumbed the depths of self knowledge through training the mind in silent prayer. Athanasius and the Alexandrian archbishops who followed him (referred to in Appendix B of Healing The Divide) were scientists of the Spirit. They conducted original firsthand experiments. They came away from these experiments radiating the power of the Spirit. This gave them the authority to lead the churches and monastic communities of their time.

 

[1] Ponticus, The Praktikos.

this post may contain affiliate links

 

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon his book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

Try Audible and Get Two Free Audiobooks