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To recover our Celtic roots is to reclaim a forgotten heritage, one that will deepen our prayer and enlarge our vision. This book shows how the Celtic way of praying drew upon its pre-Christian past as well as on the fullness of the Gospel, and how it touched not only the mind but also the heart and the imagination. Drawing on material not easily available to the ordinary reader, Esther de Waal unlocks a treasury that will stratle with its power and originality. The reader is introduced to early Irish litanies, to medieval Welsh praise poems, to the wealth of blessings that come from the oral tradition to make praying a part of daily living. The book has been updated to include a new Introduction and a complete new chapter on healing for today's world.
This concise and clear introduction to Celtic spirituality provides an overview of all aspects of Celtic understandings. By providing readers not only with a narrative, but with the poetry and songs of the ancient Celts, she explores Celtic views of pilgrimage, solitude, creation, and healing. De Waal also looks at their understanding of core Christian concepts, such as sin, sorrow, salvation, and the cross. Written accessibly, this book is excellent for parish study as well as individual reading.
How laypeople can live according to the Rule of St. Benedict. Benedictine spirituality, de Waal reminds us, is grounded in the idea that God's presence is everywhere, and that it is our job to seek it out, remembering that the material and the spiritual are not distinct and separate realms, but that even our most ordinary manual work "is to be a constant reminder of the reality of the Incarnation." To live in the holistic manner envisioned by St. Benedict, de Waal says, is to live knowing that "God does not demand the unusual, spectacular, the heroic," but rather "that I do the most ordinary, often dreary and humdrum things that face me each day with a loving openness that will allow them to become my own immediate way to God." This is the monastic way, in the traditions of both Christianity and Buddhism, yet it is also a way that is open to anyone.