St Ignatius of Loyola underwent a spiritual experience while convalescing after the Battle of Pamplona in 1521, and went on to found the Society of Jesus, better known today as the Jesuits. His spiritual exercises - a compilation of meditations and contemplative methods - are based on the Saint's own experiences of repentance and pious practices. The book is divided into four weeks of reflection and four key meditations - on the Kingdom of God, the Two Standards, the Three Classes of Men, and the Three Modes of Humility - and has at its center the emulation of Christ. One of the great masterpieces of Christian spirituality, this work continues to offer some of the most accessible and insightful guidance for going on retreat, forming a practical manual for realising the soul's deepest yearnings.
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