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We embrace the process of transformation in Christ, both in ourselves and in others, through the practice of Centering Prayer.

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Distinguishing Awareness and Presence
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q: I would like to understand more clearly what Fr. Keating means when he says that the ever present awareness is: "Not really awareness at all, it's just presence".

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Discovering Centering Prayer in New Mexico
Denise Tierney
Voices of Community

It is Autumn. As I make the daily drive North from Rio Rancho to Santa Fe I am aware that Brother Sun rises later and later. No matter how many times I make this drive I am continually amazed at the beauty of the rolling hills . . .

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Centering Prayer
Discerning the Journey
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  ... None of my friends or family are religious, so I often feel alone in my spiritual life. It is hard to sustain a solid base for the spiritual life in these circumstances. ... Since I felt that my spiritual upbringing was drawn from the Catholic tradition I started having serious thoughts about converting, but now I am suddenly having very strong doubts. ... But I don’t find firm ground in the Norwegian protestant church either. So I feel homeless and adrift. Are my thoughts about converting most of all a sign of immature spiritual needs, of which I should ignore? ...

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey
Discerning the Dark Nights
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  I have been a meditator and spiritual practitioner for 10 years. As of last year around February I went from having many ecstatic blissful experiences of God into a dark night of the soul....I have been experiencing excruciating pains all through my body, subtle self and causal self and it goes on pretty much continuously except in moments of complete blissful union....

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey, Father Thomas Keating
Discerning Decisions in Retirement
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico Read More. Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
Difficulty with Centering Prayer
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  My difficulty with Centering Prayer is distractions of thoughts spilling over and being unable to get to or sustain a deep place in the prayer. I usually sit down to pray and all is well. Then I read a psalm but a feeling or ache in my head starts before I center and linked thoughts just crowd my mind. It is more like a thinking mediation.

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Difficulty in Doing a Second Sit
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  I have had numerous people tell me that they have no difficulty carving space for the first sit of the day, usually in the morning. But once the day gets going it is most difficult to find time for the second sit. I myself find the second sit difficult to find time for or even to remember.

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Centering Prayer
Crisis of Faith During Troubles
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

The surgery was a success and I am confident that the outlook for both boys is very good. Nevertheless, this time around I have experienced a crisis of faith.

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Centering Prayer
Crises and the Prayer of Jabez
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q: My question is regarding grief. Actually I suppose it is regarding prayer in any form of strain or fear, but grief especially.

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey, Father Thomas Keating
Conversations with God on My Spiritual Journey
Barbara Sullivan
Voices of Community

God is always speaking, but few times have I documented what He has showed me or told me. 
This was one of the times...

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Centering Prayer, The Practice of Contemplative Living
Contrition
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  On a recent Contemplative Outreach silent retreat I had my first encounter with the theme of contrition. I felt a little tickled because I knew that I was being much harder on myself than the Lord, who didn't seem as concerned as I.

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Spiritual Journey
Contemplative Service in Hospice
Noreen Tillotson
Voices of Community

Coming from the perspective of someone who has survived cancer certainly puts you in a place to understand, at least partially, what our hospice residents are going through.

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Contemplative Outreach South Africa: On Our Regional Retreat and the Passing of Nelson Mandela
Hilary Tyghe
Voices of Community

On the first night Brian, our co-ordinator, asked how each of us were. We all seemed to be in need of rest – both physically and spiritually. He gave us a question from the booklet - “what is of value to you in your life, and what is chaff?”  We would reflect on this in the privacy of our hermitage. We ended the evening with Lectio Divina.

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Centering Prayer, Spiritual Journey, Retreats
Contemplative Outreach and Prison Contemplative Fellowship, A New Partnership
Ray Leonardini
Other

Prison Contemplative Fellowship is an affiliation of prisoners, former prisoners, their families, volunteers, and prison chaplains whose focus is the support of Centering Prayer practice in prisons and jails.

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Prison Ministry
Contemplative Movement
Robin Gates
Voices of Community

Heaven and Earth converge in our bodies. The body is our teacher. It gives us messages and grounds us in the sacred present. It is the temple of the Holy Spirit. It longs and prays for our hospitality, to be seen, heard, integrated, and welcomed back into wholeness. One way to offer hospitality is through contemplative movement ...

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Centering Prayer, Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Contemplative Hospitality
Robin Gates, M.A.
Voices of Community

Hospitality

     In contemplative consciousness, one is equipoised, in balance, at the center of one’s house welcoming what arises in quiet hospitality, free of prejudice and attempts to change, possess or reject.  In the silent interior, guests gather, are witnessed, and given respect, acknowledgement and clarity, as they birth into consciousness for healing and transformation.

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Centering Prayer, Welcoming Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Contemplative Collaboration
Margaret Benefiel
Voices of Community

At the initiative of Thomas Keating, the founder of Contemplative Outreach, the founders of three other major Christian contemplative organizations were invited to meet with him in early October at St. Benedict’s Monastery in Snowmass, Colorado...

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality, Father Thomas Keating
Contemplative & Vocal Prayers
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  Is it possible to experience contemplative prayer and vocal prayer simultaneously?

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Concern About Welcoming Prayer and Passivity
Cherry Haisten
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  I understand the Welcoming Prayer is about acceptance.  But what about change and action? If your boss treats you bad, your doctor ignores your health, if someone threatens your loved ones? Doesn't the Welcoming Prayer make us passive in situations?

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Welcoming Prayer
Comparing Centering Prayer and Buddhist Meditation
Fr. Carl J. Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  I am curious about the difference in effects between a Buddhist meditation and Centering Prayer, given that in Centering Prayer there is a large emphasis on consenting to the Divine presence as we are being "worked on." In Buddhist meditation, since there is no such intention to an outside source, does the same kind of "divine therapy" take place regardless? Or are there different effects?

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Centering Prayer, Contemplative Spirituality
Chapter 2: Renewing your Practice of Centering Prayer, Part I
David Frenette
David Frenette

Chapter 2:  Renewing Your Practice of Centering Prayer,  Part I

Let's look in this chapter at how valuable the Centering Prayer basic guidelines are, even for longtime practitioners.  Many of the difficulties encountered by longtime practitioners are helped by returning to the simple wealth of meaning that is contained in the four introductory guidelines.

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Centering Prayer
Chapter 2: Renewing your Practice of Centering Prayer Part IV
David Frenette
David Frenette

Chapter 2:  Renewing your Practice of Centering Prayer  Part IV of IV: 
Grounding your Centering Prayer Practice by Letting Intention and Consent Flow into Your Life (con't)

Reconnect to the fourth basic guideline: at the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes. …

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Centering Prayer
Chapter 2: Renewing your Practice of Centering Prayer, Part II
David Frenette
David Frenette

Chapter 2:  Renewing Your Practice of Centering Prayer, Part II
How Your Body Position Affects Your Inner Posture During Prayer

Reconnect to the second basic guideline: sitting comfortably and with eyes closed, settle briefly and silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God’s presence and action within. ...Contemplative resting in God can bring physical relaxation. However, resting in God is primarily an inner resting of your being in God’s Being.

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Centering Prayer
Chapter 2: Renewing your Practice of Centering Prayer Part III
David Frenette
David Frenette

Chapter 2:  Renewing your Practice of Centering Prayer  Part IV of IV: 
Grounding your Centering Prayer Practice by Letting Intention and Consent Flow into Your Life (cion't)

Reconnect to the fourth basic guideline: at the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes. As Jane’s spaciness and lack of motivation for the spiritual journey shifted, we turned to her final and most important issue: being “ungrounded in life.” I asked her to describe more fully what she meant by this phrase. She said, “I used to feel invigorated in my life as a result of my Centering Prayer. Now I feel a little more inward...

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Centering Prayer
Chanting and Centering Prayer
Fr. Carl Arico
Q&A with Fr. Carl J. Arico

Q:  Is it a good idea to listen to soft Gregorian Chant while engaged in Centering Prayer?

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Centering Prayer

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