What Role Does Giving Thanks Play in Meditation?

07/07/2015 Comment

What role does giving thanks play in meditation? How does it work? How should we approach it?

Of Giving Thanks, from Finding God through Meditation, by St. Peter of Alcantara

After meditation follows giving of thanks, the occasion of which must be taken from the matter meditated upon. For example, if the meditation be of the Passion of our Savior, we must give thanks unto him, that he has redeemed us from so great torments. If of sins, that with forbearance he has expected us to do penance. If of the miseries of this life, that he has preserved us from the greatest part of them. If of death, that hitherto, he has defended us from the perils of sudden death and has favorably granted us...READ MORE

Filed under meditation, navigating the interior life, peter of alcantara, prayer, saint peter of alcantara, st. peter of alcantara

Meditation Doesn't Have to Hurt

07/02/2015 Comment

"...to run with an overly active imagination to Jerusalem, to frame to the imagination those things which are to be meditated there, does oftentimes hurt the head."

Finding God through Meditation, by St. Peter of Alcantara, brings the wisdom of the great saint into your hands. St. Peter directed St. Teresa of Avila on difficult questions she had about prayer and she turned to this work for guidance.

I’ll be sharing excerpts from the book here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them and growing closer to God as a result. This excerpt is from the second section of the book, "The Way of Meditation."

Of Meditation

After reading follows meditation,...READ MORE

Filed under meditation, navigating the interior life, peter of alcantara, prayer, saint peter of alcantara, st. peter of alcantara

Distraction and Reading in Meditation

06/30/2015 Comments (1)

"When the reader falls any place which moves his affection, let him there pause awhile, that in his heart it may cause a greater impression."

Finding God through Meditation, by St. Peter of Alcantara, brings the wisdom of the great saint into your hands. St. Peter directed St. Teresa of Avila on difficult questions she had about prayer and she turned to this work for guidance.

I’ll be sharing excerpts from the book here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them and growing closer to God as a result. This excerpt comes from the second section of the book, "The Way of Meditation."

Of Reading

After a due preparation follows reading those things that...READ MORE

Filed under meditation, navigating the interior life, peter of alcantara, prayer, saint peter of alcantara, st. peter of alcantara

Medjugorje and the Authentic Work of God

06/25/2015 Comments (61)

By Llorenzi (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia CommonsAs I was making my way to the Catholic Church, I was deeply blessed by an encounter with a 17th century priest who taught me, through his writings, how to overcome aridity in prayer. This was a significant breakthrough for me and brought me tremendous relief. I developed an instant affinity to this priest and looked for other writings of his that might help me. By God’s grace, I didn’t find anything else about him until I became Catholic and discovered that his teachings were condemned by the Church.

The central lesson of this encounter was that God works through people and situations both because of them and in spite of them. In this case, once I received official word about the Church’s...READ MORE

Filed under apparitions, medjugorje, obedience

How Do You Prepare to Pray?

06/25/2015 Comment

Finding God through Meditation, by St. Peter of Alcantara, brings the wisdom of the great saint into your hands. St. Peter directed St. Teresa of Avila on difficult questions she had about prayer and she turned to this work for guidance.

I’ll be sharing excerpts from the book here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them and growing closer to God as a result. The section I'm sharing today comes from the first chapter of the book, "Perspective on Meditation and Devotion."

Of the Preparation Necessary to Prayer

It will not be beside our purpose to handle all these parts severally; we will, therefore, first begin with preparation, which we did put...READ MORE

Filed under meditation, navigating the interior life, peter of alcantara, prayer, saint peter of alcantara, st. peter of alcantara

6 Things You Need for Prayer

06/23/2015 Comment

Finding God through Meditation, by St. Peter of Alcantara, brings the wisdom of the great saint into your hands. St. Peter directed St. Teresa of Avila on difficult questions she had about prayer and she turned to this work for guidance.

I’ll be sharing excerpts from the book here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them and growing closer to God as a result. Today's excerpt comes from the first chapter of the book, "Perspective on Meditation and Devotion."

Of Six Things Necessary to Prayer

These are the exercises and meditations, Christian reader, wherewith every day you may feed your soul, which if you do rightly use, you will never want matter...READ MORE

Filed under meditation, navigating the interior life, peter of alcantara, prayer, saint peter of alcantara, st. peter of alcantara

My Spiritual Director Uses the Enneagram. What's Wrong with That?

06/19/2015 Comments (32)

Can you trust a spiritual director who uses an enneagram? Here's my answer to a reader's question.

Dear Dan,

I recently began a new relationship with a spiritual director who claimed to be committed to the teachings of the Church. She is a local Benedictine sister who is very nice and seems to be sincere. However, in our second session she asked if I would be interested in using an ancient tool of spiritual wisdom known as the enneagram to help me in my spiritual progress. I recall reading about this tool in a Vatican document called “Jesus Christ - Bearer of the Water of Life.” That document says that the use of the enneagram “introduces an ambiguity in the doctrine and the life of the...READ MORE

Filed under enneagram, spiritual direction, spiritual director, spirituality

Bring on the Temptations!

06/18/2015 Comments (3)

"No one is tempted more than he is able to bear."

The purpose of the newest book in the Navigating the Interior Life book series, 30 Days with Teresa of Avila, is to reveal the unique personality, wisdom, and insight that often emerges out of the letters of the saints. These letters are a window into Saint Teresa’s genuine humanity, witness, and pragmatic advice for pursuing an intimate friendship with God.

I’ll be sharing some of the letters here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them. This is Day 29 from the book.

CCLXVII
1579?
To a Carmelite Nun
How to bear persecution.

. . . In order to profit and advance by means of persecutions and...READ MORE

Filed under navigating the interior life, saint teresa of avila, st. teresa of avila, temptation, temptations, teresa of avila

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About Dan Burke

Dan Burke
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Dan Burke is an award-winning author, writer, and speaker on Catholic spirituality, sharing a contagious love for Jesus and His Church. Dan serves as the Executive Director and writer for EWTN'S National Catholic Register and is a regular co-host on Register Radio in addition to his appearances on many other EWTN television and radio programs. Dan is the founder and president of the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation, and he is the creator of Divine Intimacy Radio and SpiritualDirection.com. Above all, Dan is a grateful husband and father of four and a student sitting at the feet of His Master.