Centering Prayer

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Centering prayer (or Contemplative prayer) is a daily spiritual practice to open one's entire being to God, and Thomas Keating's method has been my guide. It is not a method or a form of relaxation but rather an exercise of faith, hope and love. 

Fr. Keating tells us that all true prayer is based on a conviction of the presence of the Spirit. True prayer can go in two directions. These are called discursive prayer and contemplative prayer. In discursive prayer, we pray into the Spirit using our thoughts and words. In contemplative prayer, we detach ourselves from our thoughts so as to open up ourselves to letting the Spirit pray in us (Keating, 1994).

The spiritual wisdom of Thomas Keating, Cynthia Bourgeault, Peter Traben Haas and others has been especially helpful as I learn the history, workings, and loveliness of this practice.

Keating, Fr. Thomas, Open Mind, Open Heart, The Contemplative Dimension of the Gospel, the Continuum Publishing Company, New York, 1994.

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