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little book of christian mysticism

Little Book of Christian Mysticism

Essential Wisdom of Saints, Seers and Sages
$24.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Hampton Roads
Publication Date: April, 2018
ISBN: 9781571747747
In stock now: 2

With over 300 quotations this book invites the reader to delve into the writings of the great contemplatives and mystics of the past two thousand years.

The Little Book of Christian Mysticism provides a user-friendly, insightful, and potentially life-changing introduction to the essential teachings of the greatest mystics in the western wisdom traditions, past and present, including Francis of Assisi, Hildegard of Bingen, Thomas Merton, Evelyn Underhill, Meister Eckhart, Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, and Julian of Norwich. Readers can use this book to initiate themselves into this visionary and ecstatic spiritual lineage, and they can also use it as a book of daily meditations. Small enough to fit in one’s pocket or handbag, this is truly a user-friendly introduction to this venerable body of wisdom.

Among Carl McColman’s other books are The Big Book of Christian Mysticism and Answering the Contemplative Call.

conference of the birds

Conference of the Birds

By: Attar
$19.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: WW Norton
Publication Date: April, 2018
ISBN: 9780393355543
In stock now: 5

Considered by Rumi to be "the master" of Sufi mystic poetry, Attar (who died, in 1220, when Rumi was 12 years old) is best known for his epic poem The Conference of the Birds, a magnificent allegorical tale about the soul's search for meaning. The poem recounts the perilous journey of the world's birds to the faraway peaks of Mount Qaf—a mythical mountain that wraps around the earth—in search of the mysterious Simurgh, their king. Attar's beguiling anecdotes and humor intermingle the sublime with the mundane, the spiritual with the worldly, and the religious with the metaphysical. Reflecting the entire evolution of Sufi mystic tradition, Attar's poem models the soul's escape from the mind’s rational embrace.

The parables in this book trigger memories deep within us all. The stories inhabit the imagination, and slowly over time, their wisdom trickles down into the heart. The process of absorption is unique to every individual, as is each person’s journey. We are the birds in the story.

Sholeh Wolpé re-creates the intense beauty of the original Persian in contemporary English verse and poetic prose.

The seven valleys they must cross are:

  1. Valley of the Quest, where the Wayfarer begins by casting aside all dogma, belief, and unbelief
  2. Valley of Love, where reason is abandoned for the sake of love.
  3. Valley of Knowledge, where worldly knowledge becomes utterly useless
  4. Valley of Detachment, where all desires and attachments to the world are given up. Here, what is assumed to be “reality” vanishes.
  5. Valley of Unity, where the Wayfarer realizes that everything is connected and that the Beloved is beyond everything, including harmony, multiplicity, and eternity.
  6. Valley of Wonderment, where, entranced by the beauty of the Beloved, the Wayfarer becomes perplexed and, steeped in awe, find that he or she has never known of understood anything.
  7. Valley of Poverty and Annihilation, where the self disappears into the universe and the Wayfarer becomes timeless, existing in both the past and the future.

In the words of Attar:

This book is an ornament for the ages.
It offers something for both the high and low.

If you came sad and frozen to this book,

its hidden fire will blaze and melt your ice.

Yes, these verses are magic:

They grow more potent with each reading.

They are like beauty under a veil

that reveals its loveliness slowly.

dangerous mystic

Dangerous Mystic

Meister Eckhart's Path to the God Within
$40.00 CAD
Hardcover Book
Publisher: Penguin Press
Publication Date: March, 2018
ISBN: 9781101981566
In stock now: 2

 Meister Eckhart was a medieval Christian mystic whose writings have struck a chord with thinkers as diverse as Heidegger, Merton, Sartre, John Paul II, Matthew Fox, and the Dalai Lama. He is the inspiration for the author Eckhart Tolle’s pen name, and his fourteenth-century quotes have become an online sensation.

Today a variety of Christians, as well as many Zen Buddhists, Sufi Muslims, Jewish Cabbalists, and various spiritual seekers, all claim Eckhart as their own. Meister Eckhart preached a personal, internal path to God at a time when the Church could not have been more hierarchical and ritualistic. Then and now, Eckhart’s revolutionary method of direct access to ultimate reality offers a profoundly subjective approach that is at once intuitive and pragmatic, philosophical yet non-rational, and, above all, universally accessible. This dangerous mystic’s teachings challenge the very nature of religion, yet the man himself never directly challenged the Church.

Eckhart’s personal path from conventional friar to professor to lay preacher culminated in a spiritual philosophy that combined the teachings of an array of pagan and Christian writers, as well as Muslim and Jewish philosophers. His revolutionary decision to take his approach to the common people garnered him many enthusiastic followers as well as powerful enemies. After Eckhart’s death and papal censure, many religious women and clerical supporters, known as the Friends of God, kept his legacy alive through centuries, albeit underground until the master’s dramatic rediscovery by modern Protestants and Catholics.

Dangerous Mystic grounds Meister Eckhart in a world that is simultaneously familiar and alien. In the midst of this medieval society, a few decades before the Black Death, Eckhart boldly preached to captivated crowds a timeless method, a “wayless way,” of directly experiencing the divine.

"A rare combination of sweeping historical narrative, penetrating biography, and profound spiritual elucidation. Joel  Harrington elegantly shows why Meister Eckhart is reclaimed as a touchstone of humane holiness in every era—especially ours. This is a book to read, to save, and to give.”  James Carroll 

kabalah yoga

Kabalah Yoga

Embodying the Hidden Power of the Sacred Hebrew Letters
$27.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: New Harbinger
Publication Date: January, 2018
ISBN: 9781626259379
In stock now: 2

Audi Gozlan, a certified yoga instructor and the founder of Kabalah Yoga (also a Canadian TV show!), offers a book that fuses the practice of yoga with the ancient wisdom of Jewish mysticism, teaching you how to awaken the secret energy of each Hebrew letter in order to enliven your practice and experience the hidden powers of the universe.

Kabalah Yoga blends the movement and meditation of Hatha flow yoga with the ancient teachings of Kabalah, incorporating the wisdom of the Hebrew letters, also known as the Sacred Shapes, which are believed by Jewish mystics to be divine templates that contain the creative energy of the universe. This book describes the body, breath, and soul found within each of the Sacred Shapes, and shows that by moving your body into asanas based on each letter of the Hebrew alphabet and meditating on their meaning, you can unlock and embrace their great, empowering, and healing wisdom. Kabalah Yoga brings a new form of awareness to the practice of yoga as a language of the soul, allowing you to journey deep within and discover yourself from the inside out, while tapping into the divine energy of each of the Sacred Shapes. With the explanations, insights, stories, meditations, and photographs in this book, you'll enhance your practice and improve your life.

Audi is an artist, scholar, yoga practitioner, explorer, and true pioneer. With the gift of this book, he is taking us into a path of feeling much more in our movement and breath. Kabalah Yoga encourages us to search inward and be the vessel that holds our soul flame, shining and elevating everything…

 

May we all realize the neshimah (breath) that is breathing us all. May we realize our ko-ach (full potential) as we connect to the ein sof  (eternal light) that embraces all life. —Shiva Rea, from the foreword

rumi's secret

Rumi's Secret

The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love
$21.99 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: HarperCollins
Publication Date: January, 2018
ISBN: 9780061999154
In stock now: 3

The ccstatic love poems and insights of Rumi, a Persian poet and Sufi mystic born over eight centuries ago, are beloved by millions of readers around the world. He has been compared to Shakespeare for his outpouring of creativity and to Saint Francis of Assisi for his spiritual wisdom. Yet his life has long remained the stuff of legend rather than intimate knowledge.

In this breakthrough biography, Brad Gooch brilliantly brings to life the man and puts a face to the name Rumi, vividly coloring in his time and place—a world as rife with conflict as our own. The map of Rumi’s life stretched over 2,500 miles. Gooch traces this epic journey from Central Asia, where Rumi was born in 1207, traveling with his family—who were displaced by Mongol terror—to settle in Konya, Turkey. Pivotal was the disruptive appearance of irascible wandereer Shams of Tabriz, who taught him to whirl and transformed him from a respectable middle-aged Muslim preacher into a Whitmanesque poet of radical intimacy and ecstatic oneness. Their vital connection as teacher and pupil, friend and beloved, is one of the world’s greatest spiritual love stories. When Shams disappeared, Rumi coped with the pain of separation by composing joyous poems of reunion, both human and divine.

Ambitious, bold, and beautifully written, Rumi’s Secret reveals the unfolding of Rumi’s devotion to a “religion of love,” remarkable in his own time and made even more relevant for the twenty-first century by this compelling account.

“An excellent and accessible introduction to the profound and generous mystical vision of Rumi that will give Western readers a much-needed insight into the true spirituality of Islam.” —Karen Armstrong, author of A History of God

“Deftly situating Rumi in the crosscurrents of Persian, Arab, Turkic, and Mongol history, Gooch gives us an indelible portrait of this mystic so crucial to Christians, Muslims, Jews, and modern-day searchers after meaning.” —Fernanda Eberstadt

holy rascals

Holy Rascals

Advice for Spiritual Revolutionaries
$19.50 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Sounds True
Publication Date: December, 2017
ISBN: 9781622037469
In stock now: 3

God is real. Everything we say about God is made up. Holy Rascals is a rousing call to anyone ready to go beyond isms and ideologies, and live in the world as a liberating force of justice, compassion, and joy. It’s also a brilliant, blunt tuning of your funny bone for the greater good.

“Holy rascals are spiritual culture jammers who use humor, play, creativity, and critical thinking to reveal the human origins of religions and how religions mask their true origins behind the conceit of divine origins,” writes Rabbi Rami.

Humor is the one thing Gods and clergy cannot fight. It is the one thing they fear the most. The surest way to slay a God is to laugh at the madness the God promotes. This is what holy rascals are called to do, and this book is a manifesto and guide to doing it.

In part one, he describes the making of a holy rascal and the great task of “freeing religion from the parochial and for the perennial.” Part two explores the art of hacking the holy, or pulling back the curtain on religion’s fear-based mechanisms of control.

 Substitute “religion” for “language” and you have the basic holy rascal understanding of religion.

We turn sounds into letters, letters into words, words into sentences, sentences into paragraphs, paragraphs into books, books into excuses for bashing each other’s heads in. No wonder silence is golden.

Part three presents some of the provocative tools and one-of-a-kind practices of the holy rascal, with guidance for creating your very own “rascally” ways.

We are religious anarchists and spiritual subversives whose goal is to free religion from branding all together, and in this way set human meaning making free to imagine new ways of being holy that do not fall into the clutches of tribalism and its passion for demonizing the other.

Rabbi Rami’s wit and aphorisms offer astonishing, freeing perspective for today’s spiritual seeker. “What makes enlightened people seem special is that they are so very ordinary, while all the rest of us are desperately trying to be anything but…

“At once side-splittingly hilarious and heartbreakingly on target, this outrageous tour de force of a spiritual manifesto reminds us once again that great irony wielded with great compassion can be a powerful vehicle of truth.” —Cynthia Bourgeault, author of The Wisdom Way of Knowing

meister eckhart's book of the heart

Meister Eckhart's Book of the Heart

Meditations for the Restless Souls
$24.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Hampton Roads Publishing
Publication Date: October, 2017
ISBN: 9781571747648
In stock now: 1

Meister Eckhart (1260 -1328) was a priest, a mystic, and nearly a heretic (he died before the Church court’s verdict). In the 20th century, the Roman Catholic Church rehabilitated him and the late Pope John Paul II spoke of his work with fondness. However, what makes him of particular interest is the fact that he has influenced a wide range of spiritual teachers and mystics both inside and outside the Christian tradition. Erich Fromm, Eckhart Tolle, Richard Rohr, D. T. Suzuki, and Rudolf Steiner have all credited Eckhart as being an important influence on their thought. In addition, his work has influenced the development of 20th century American Buddhism and the Theosophical tradition.

Eckhart wrote at a time—much like our own—when society appeared to be coming apart at the seams. In the midst of all that chaos and uncertainty, he captured the many forms and stages of the love of God, the mystic path, and the journey of transformation—in language so startling that he, too, was often accused of heresy.

Let me seek You

in the darkness

of my silence

 

and find You

in the silence

of Your light

 

which is

love shining

like the sun

flowing

like the river

 

and joying

like the heart.

Now, seven centuries later, this fresh, stunning rendering of gems from his work translates the essence of one of Christianity's greatest poetic and spiritual voices. This book conveys the heart of Eckhart's teaching on what it means to love God and embark on an authentic spiritual journey—a journey that is characterized by mystery, paradox, and an embrace of the unknown.

new testament

New Testament

A Translation
$46.95 CAD
Hardcover Book
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication Date: October, 2017
ISBN: 9780300186093
In stock now: 2

 David Bentley Hart undertook this new translation of the New Testament in the spirit of “etsi doctrina non daretur,” “as if doctrine is not given.” Reproducing the texts’ often fragmentary formulations without augmentation or correction, he has produced a pitilessly literal translation, one that captures the texts’ impenetrability and unfinished quality while awakening readers to an uncanniness that often lies hidden beneath doctrinal layers.

The early Christians’ sometimes raw, astonished, and halting prose challenges the idea that the New Testament affirms the kind of people we are. Hart reminds us that they were a company of extremists, radical in their rejection of the values and priorities of society not only at its most degenerate, but often at its most reasonable and decent. 

To live as the New Testament language requires, Christians would have to become strangers and sojourners on the earth, to have here no enduring city, to belong to a Kingdom truly not of this world. And we surely cannot do that, can we? —from the introduction

Also by David Bentley Hart is The Experience of God.

warriors of love

Warriors of Love

Rumi's Odes to Shams of Tabriz
$16.95 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Watkins Media
Publication Date: September, 2017
ISBN: 9781786780294
In stock now: 0

In 1244 a man wrapped in a coarse black coat entered Konya and so into the life of Islam’s most celebrated poet and mystic: Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi. A wanderer and spiritual vagabond, Shams of Tabriz proceeded to wrestle with Rumi’s soul. What he wanted from his protegé was for him to embody a wilder, more robust spirituality that would enable him to embrace life’s rawness more completely than any saint had done in the past.

Warriors of Love is a fresh interpretation of a selection of 49 poems which were written by Rumi as metaphors for his love for God as well as for his friend Shams, the Wild One. In a long introduction on the life and times of Rumi and his friendship with Shams, translator James Cowan also explores the historical facts of their encounter, Sufism, the Mevlevi Order of Dervishes, the new dimension that Shams brought to Islamic spirituality and the importance of friendship as a true path to God.

Regard the soul as a fountain, all creation as rivers;

While the fountain flows forth, rivers swell.

 

Dismiss grief from your mind and drink your fill;

This spring will not cease, eternal are its waters.

 

From the moment of your birth a ladder

Was placed before you to help you escape.

 

First you were mineral, a plant, then animal:

There’s no secret about your evolution.

 

Later you became man, equipped with knowledge, reason and faith

Look at your body, nature’s dust-pit, how perfect it has grown!

 

Leaving manhood behind, there’s no doubt you’ll become an angel;

The earth you’ll leave then, and head for Heaven.

 

Transcending the angel, become an ocean

Whose each drop will be larger than countless Seas of Oman.

 

With all your soul put behind you ‘Son’, adore instead ‘One’;

It doesn’t matter how your body ages, your soul’s young.

irena's children

Irena's Children

The Extraordinary Story of the Woman Who Saved 2,500 Children from the Warsaw Ghetto
$22.00 CAD
Paperback Book
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication Date: September, 2017
ISBN: 9781476778518
In stock now: 3

This book is an extraordinary and gripping account of Irena Sendler—the female Oskar Schindler—who took staggering risks to save 2,500 children from death and deportation in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II.

In 1942, one young social worker, Irena Sendler, was granted access to the Warsaw ghetto as a public health specialist. While she was there, she began to understand the fate that awaited the Jewish families who were unable to leave. Soon she reached out to the trapped families, going from door to door and asking them to trust her with their young children. Driven to extreme measures and with the help of a network of local tradesmen, ghetto residents, and her star-crossed lover in the Jewish resistance, Irena ultimately smuggled thousands of children past the Nazis. She made dangerous trips through the city’s sewers, hid children in coffins, snuck them under overcoats at checkpoints, and slipped them through secret passages in abandoned buildings.

But Irena did something even more astonishing at immense personal risk: she kept a secret list buried in bottles under an old apple tree in a friends back garden. On it were the names and true identities of these Jewish children, recorded so their families could find them after the war. She could not know that more than ninety percent of their families would perish.

Irena's Children is a fascinating narrative of the extraordinary moral and physical courage of those who chose to fight inhumanity with compassion. Irena survived the war, and lived to the age of 98. Much later in life, she was able to meet many of the “children” whose lives she had saved. Hers is a truly heroic tale of survival, resilience, and redemption.