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date: 17 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

“Christian Contemplative Thought and Practice in the Contemporary World” describes the growth and development of contemplative and meditative practices within contemporary Christianity, focusing especially on the retrieval of ancient contemplative practices in the contemporary period by Thomas Merton, John Main, and Thomas Keating. It also attends to the varied expressions of Christian contemplative thought among contemporary thinkers and practitioners and movements, such as the new monasticism, to ask how and why it continues to thrive and develop in the contemporary period. Noteworthy here are the distinctive contributions made by emerging writers such as Martin Laird, Richard Rohr, Cynthia Bourgeault, Kathleen Norris, Barbara Holmes, Sarah Coakley, Adam Bucko, Bernadette Flanagan, and Jean-Yves Leloup in extending and deepening the understanding of Christian contemplative practice in light of contemporary experience. Also significant are contributions by Latin American, African American, and feminist writers, such as Gustavo Gutiérrez, Maria Clara Bingemer, and Howard Thurman, in illuminating the role of Christian contemplative practice in responding to social injustice.

Keywords: Christian meditation, contemplation, centering prayer, new monasticism, contemplation and action, awareness, monasticism.

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