Thursday, December 11, 2008

- Centering Prayer (i.e. Keating, Menninger, Herington)

Though this blog is dedicated to positive teachings the spiritual life, from time to time there are issues that must be addressed that are not positive. For in your in-depth review, we have provided links to several articles that address the challenges with Centering Prayer. There is a real danger here amidst all the good intention and desire.

I believe that history will categorize "Centering Prayer" (as taught by Keating, Menninger, and Herrington) among the heresies of Pelagianism, and Quietism. Though I recognize that many have benefited from centering prayer (and have not necessarily sinned in so doing); those who were influenced by the aforementioned heresies (particularly Quietism) made the same positive claims. I also recognize the good desire of many who have fallen into Centering prayer. I am convinced that they are honestly seeking God.

However, truth is not determined by experience and intention alone, but also by external objective reality - particularly when the magisterium of the Church has spoken on the matter. Accordingly I have also included links from the Vatican and other sources along with links from good Bishops who have combated these issues in their diocese.

If you desire to understand the truth, the depth, and the riches of a profound prayer life and relationship with Christ, see the books we recommend on this site regarding true Christian Contemplation and Meditation. One thing to remember, if we accept the definitions and teaching of the Church and it's Saints and doctors on the matter, "Centering Prayer" (whatever the claims or beliefs may be) is NOT the same as "Contemplation."

Many blessings to you in your search for the real presence of Christ.

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