- Contemplative Prayer © 1969
- Image: Doubleday
- 116 pages
Merton is one godly man. I’ve read many books on prayer that have left a vague aftertaste of unlived academia. Contemplative Prayer, on the other hand, is a book of personal experience informed by a brilliant mind.
This is not a book for beginners. It would have been almost worthless to me back in Seminary when I was more interested in being correct than communicating with God. Even now, there were many times during Contemplative Prayer where I felt like I’m just beginning my journey with God in prayer. In God, there are always deeper places to journey.
One of the highlights of this book was his recurring use of St. John of the Cross’ Dark Night. Merton constantly reminds us that real contemplation is not focused on the effects of prayer. There are times in prayer when we feel no divine consolations. Many times contemplation is a journey through the desert.
If you’re serious about and committed to a life-long journey of contemplative prayer, Merton’s a wise and reliable spiritual adviser.