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date: 05 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter asks what the Church has to learn from, and what it can offer to, the contemplative turn in contemporary culture. It begins with one particular aspect of this phenomenon, namely the interreligious spirituality of persons who find themselves caught up ‘between’ the wisdom of established traditions and their pursuit of an authentic personal practice. Thomas Merton and Swami Abhishiktananda are presented as well-known interreligious mystics, two exemplary spiritual guides who seek to pass on their own deeply discerned wisdom about how to live a life of encounter with ‘the other’. In raising some of the theological questions that emerge as they seek to negotiate their interreligious experience, the second part of the chapter leads into a brief exercise or ‘case study’ in Comparative Theology: a dialogue between two well-known mystical texts, the Zen Buddhist Mumonkan and the Christian Cloud of Unknowing.

Keywords: dialogue, other, religion, intuition, wisdom, reading, mindfulness

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