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Exposition on the Song of Songs (Cistercain Father Series) [Paperback]

By William of St. Thierry, Columba Hart (Translator) & J. M. Dechanet (Introduction by)
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Item Specifications...

Pages   171
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.5" Width: 5.56" Height: 0.48"
Weight:   0.58 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 1, 2006
Publisher   Cistercian Publications
ISBN  0879073470  
EAN  9780879073473  

Availability  0 units.

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Item Description...

Perhaps no book was more central to medieval spirituality and mysticism," writes Bernard McGinn, "or more problematic to contemporary readers, than the Song of Songs. . . Lingering Victorian attitudes towards the opposition between sex and religion find the Song's frank erotic language embarrassing and even distasteful." But in the twelfth and early thirteenth centuries, the Song of Songs was a favorite book of Cistercian monks. Bernard of Clairvaux, Gilbert of Hoyland, and John of Ford, as well as William of Saint Thierry, read it as a dialogue between Christ the Bridegroom and the human soul, the Bride.

William of Saint Thierry began composing his commentary soon after entering the Cistercian abbey of Signy in 1135. Having left behind a busy life as a Benedictine abbot and author of theological treatises, he turned to writing meditations on Scripture as the means of listening to the voice of the Beloved. It is therefore ironic that he broke off his commentary on the Song, never to return to it, to alert the Church in France to the teaching of Peter Abelard and then to compose two treatises correcting what he deeply believed were Abelard's theological errors."

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Devotional Scholarship on Prayer  Feb 13, 2006
The author, Mr. Spidlik, deserves admiration and praise for his great knowledge and for his most apparent devotion to bring the depth of Christian tradition to modern readers. Who could not profit from a contemplative reading of this author? Most will undoubtedly discover fresh perspectives and approaches to a prayerful life. The devoted Christian can not live without prayer. The reading of this volume is an apprenticeship in holy methods of the ages. Drinking From The Hidden Fountain: A Patristic Breviary is also by Tomas Spidlik and highly recommended.
A Compendium on Eastern Spirituality in Prayer  Oct 2, 2005

"Prayer is a state of the intellect (noia), actualized only through the light of the Holy Trinity by means of ecstasy." Evagrius Ponticus

As soon as I identified the authors name, to whom I read one book, I picked up the book which upon examination proved to be a compendium on prayer, the core of eastern Christian spirituality. In his second volume on Eastern Christian spirituality, he explores in depth the final two chapters of his earlier book; 'The Spirituality of the Christian East: A Systematic Handbook.' Fr. Špidlík follows John Cassian's methodology, in writing his Conferences, while he surveys in a systematic western style themes of eastern orthodoxy, tracing their history, with prayer as its exclusive theme. He shares and exposes the teachings of many generations of eastern monastics through their spiritual writings, but he does not advocate a particular pattern of prayer.
In nine chapters and a conclusive summary, in which he underlines theological and liturgical issues, and methods of prayer, stressing the unceasing instruction. He stresses contemplation pre-eminence, and how God's rememberance was in the thought of Basil, concluding with John of Kronstadt that, 'Prayer is therefore the life of the Spirit.'

Fr. Tomáš Špidlík is one of the greatest experts on the spirituality of eastern Christianity today, and has been a professor of patristic and eastern spiritual theology at various universities across the Atlantic. Lately, he was elevated cardinal by Pope John Paul II.

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