1. The History of Contemplative Prayer in the Christian Tradition; 2. First Steps in Centering Prayer; 3. The Sacred Word as Symbol; 4. The Wanderings of the Imagination; 5. The Birth of Spiritual Attentiveness; 6. More Subtle Kinds of Thought; 7. Unloading the Unconsciois; 8. Summary of the Centering Prayer Method; 9. The Intensive Centering Prayer Experience; 10. What Contemplation Is Not; 11. Dimensions of Contemplative Prayer; 12. Methods of Extending the Effects of Centering Prayer into Daily Life; 13. Guidelines for Christian Life, Growth and Transformation Appendices.
Father Thomas Keating is known throughout the world as an exponent, teacher, and writer on contemplative prayer. A Cistercian (Trappist) monk of St. Benedict's Monastery, Snowmass, Colorado, he is a founder of the Centering Prayer Movement and of Contemplative Outreach. He is the author of numerous books, particularly of the trilogy Open Mind, Open Heart; Invitation to Love; and The Mystery of Christ.
"'The leader within the Catholic world in the task of recovering our Christian contemplative heritage.' Ewert H. Cousins, general editor, World Spirituality: An Encyclopedic History of the Religious Quest 'My mother is a self-proclaimed 'soul shopper' from way back. We started going to St Benedict's Monastery in Snowmass when I was 7 years old. Several years later, Keating became a St. Benedict's monk. He developed centering prayer, which is a lot like meditation and what this book is about. He says that meditation (or centering prayer) is a way of reducing the obstacles to the development of grace. I can sit for only five to ten minutes. It's very hard for me. Still, when I get in trouble, it shifts my perspective. As they say, we don't pray to change our circumstances; we pray to change ourselves.' Felicity Huffman's Bookshelf in Oprah's Books"