Praying With the Body: Bringing the Psalms to Life

Overview

Pray with more than just your mind—learn how to use your whole self

In this innovative prayer book, readers are invited to do more than read—they are asked to move in prayer by expressing the Psalms with motion. This way of praying helps deepen and broaden a relationship with God. It allows the pray-er to better come to understand God as “Holy One”—and in other timeless expressions of the psalmists.

In Praying with the Body readers will find ...

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Overview

Pray with more than just your mind—learn how to use your whole self

In this innovative prayer book, readers are invited to do more than read—they are asked to move in prayer by expressing the Psalms with motion. This way of praying helps deepen and broaden a relationship with God. It allows the pray-er to better come to understand God as “Holy One”—and in other timeless expressions of the psalmists.

In Praying with the Body readers will find both prayer tools and companionship. Black and white drawings showing the postures and expressions of the body, accompany the scripture texts and explanations by Roy DeLeon. Working together, these elements invite readers to taste, explore, and discover a new and different way of knowing God.

This book is for anyone who wants a more integrated and reconciled approach to prayer. It proposes a way of prayer that, depending on your level of readiness, could influence both our interior and daily life. Its meditations and reflections connect readers to their deepest needs to be with the Beloved, to be reassured of the divine presence in our midst. They address hunger and longing for true happiness, for freedom from fear, and for deep peace.

“The four basic ways of praying –oral, mental, affective, and contemplative—are all contained here.” —Father Tom Ryan, author of Prayer of Heart and Body

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

These three books engage the complex interaction of the individual believer's prayer life with the sacred words on which his or her faith is based. Most unusual, perhaps is DeLeon's Praying with the Body. DeLeon, an oblate of St. Benedict, is also a certified yoga instructor, and his book represents an original fusion of yoga movements with more Western-style gestures. The result, as illustrated by sticklike figures in the text, lies somewhere between the inspired and the silly, and it remains open to question how many readers will engage in these "moving" prayers and psalms outside a yoga studio, but DeLeon's idea is engaging.

Father Kriegshauser, a Benedictine monk in Missouri, takes a wholly traditional approach with his Praying the Psalms in Christ, a patient verse-by-verse and image-by-image exposition of each psalm in the spirit of the most ancient patristic commentaries, although Kriegshauser does take good advantage of recent scholarship. The book seems well calculated to offend Jewish readers, despite the author's effort to "[pay] the utmost tribute to these Jewish prayers"; as a year-long course with a learned priest, it will amply reward the patient Christian reader. For most collections.

Brower's little anthology is like one of those marvels of French cooking wherein the meat is pulled apart and stuffed with spices and rarities before being pieced together again; each phrase of Jesus's famous prayer is separated out and dressed with apposite excerpts from the Bible and other places, resulting in a kind of spiritual giftbook. These are all for larger collections.


—Graham Christian
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557255891
  • Publisher: Paraclete Press
  • Publication date: 3/1/2009
  • Series: Active Prayer Series
  • Pages: 150
  • Sales rank: 453,020
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Roy DeLeon is an Oblate of St. Benedict, spiritual director, and a certified yoga instructor. He represented his community, St. Placid Priory in Lacey, Washington, at the First World Congress of Benedictine Oblates in Rome, Italy in 2004. He teaches an ongoing Blessed Movements (praying with the body, heart, and soul) class at Yoga Barn in Issaquah, Washington, and conducts workshops at monasteries and retreat centers across the U.S. He makes a living as a graphic designer and lives in Bothell, Washington with his wife, Annie.

 

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