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Practical Mysticism; and, Abba: Meditations on the Lord's Prayer

4.19 of 5 stars 4.19  ·  rating details  ·  67 ratings  ·  4 reviews
"God gives without stint all that the creature needs, but it must do its part. He gives the wheat: we must reap and grind and bake it." –Evelyn Underhill

In these two classics, British poet and mystic Evelyn Underhill shows herself to be one of the most authoritative modern voices on mysticism. Written on the eve of World War I, Practical Mysticism reviews the works of the
Paperback, 288 pages
Published August 19th 2003 by Vintage (first published 1915)
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David Mullens
At times I struggle with the writing style of Evelyn Underhill. At times there are very long and descriptive paragraphs. Yet, I'm glad I stuck with it. There is a wealth of insight into living an active life and still having a strong inner life.
You have long been like a child tearing up the petals of flowers in order to make a mosaic on the garden path; and the results of this murderous diligence you mistook for a knowledge of the world

-Evelyn Underhill, Practical Mysticism
Joseph Dunn
Clear, concise, articulate, heady, and cerebral. This is a fine supplement to those interested in the mystic realm of spirituality, especially those comfortable with the Christian method. Too often, many books of this nature are "floaty" and seem to dance around the point they mean to make. Underhill's strength is her intellectual gift with language. It is also fused with real spirit and inspiration. I would recommend accompanying this book with something like, "Grist for the Mill" by Ram Dass, ...more
I keep this one on my Kindle so I can read it randomly.
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Evelyn Underhill was an English Anglo-Catholic writer and pacifist known for her numerous works on religion and spiritual practice, in particular Christian mysticism.

In the English-speaking world, she was one of the most widely read writers on such matters in the first half of the twentieth century. No other book of its type—until the appearance in 1946 of Aldous Huxley's The Perennial Philosophy—
More about Evelyn Underhill...
Mysticism: A Study in the Nature and Development of Spiritual Consciousness Practical Mysticism The Spiritual Life The Ways of the Spirit Concerning the Inner Life

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“Therefore it is to a practical mysticism that the practical man is here invited: to a training of his latent faculties, a bracing and brightening of his languid consciousness, an emancipation from the fetters of appearance, a turning of his attention to new levels of the world. Thus he may become aware of the universe which the spiritual artist is always trying to disclose to the race. This amount of mystical perception—this “ordinary contemplation,” as the specialists call it—is possible to all men: without it, they are not wholly conscious, nor wholly alive. It is a natural human activity, no more involving the great powers and sublime experiences of the mystical saints and philosophers than the ordinary enjoyment of music involves the special creative powers of the great musician.” 4 likes
“As the beautiful does not exist for the artist and poet alone—though these can find in it more poignant depths of meaning than other men—so the world of Reality exists for all; and all may participate in it, unite with it, according to their measure and to the strength and purity of their desire.” 4 likes
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