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Water, Wind, Earth, and Fire The Christian Practice of Praying with the Elements
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Water, Wind, Earth, and Fire The Christian Practice of Praying with the Elements

3.7 3
by Christine Valters Paintner
 

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Organized around “The Canticle of the Creatures” by St. Francis of Assisi, Water, Wind, Earth, and Fire explores the ways in which praying with the natural elements can enliven Christian spiritual life. In this brilliant book, Benedictine Oblate Christine Valters Paintner synthesizes concrete ideas, simple prayers, and a wealth of thought-provoking

Overview

Organized around “The Canticle of the Creatures” by St. Francis of Assisi, Water, Wind, Earth, and Fire explores the ways in which praying with the natural elements can enliven Christian spiritual life. In this brilliant book, Benedictine Oblate Christine Valters Paintner synthesizes concrete ideas, simple prayers, and a wealth of thought-provoking quotations on the spiritual significance of the four elements.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In a warm, personable manner, Paintner, a Benedictine oblate and spiritual director, invites the reader to engage creation as a sacred text by prayerfully exploring theological dimensions of the elements. Drawing on Celtic tradition, Paintner explores religious and cultural symbolism; for example, water’s associations with the direction west, the season autumn, and its physical forms and spiritual dimensions, such as tides, thirst, tears, baptism. Suggestions for reflection and action include the application of lectio divina, a practice of “sacred reading” typically used with scripture, to nature, encouraging the reader “to listen deeply for the stirring of the holy in sacred texts around us.” In each chapter, Paintner offers reflections on her prayer life during the book’s composition, demonstrating how she applied the spiritual practices she suggests (such as lighting a candle when contemplating “Fire”). Quotes from scripture, poets, essayists, and Christian mystics encourage the reader to seek divine revelation and comprehension of God’s love for all creation by “cultivating a contemplative relationship to nature.” Simple and powerful, this book will be a welcome new resource for individuals and groups seeking spiritual connection to creation. (Mar.)
Library Journal
Paintner (Awakening the Creative Spirit), a Benedictine oblate, here gives us a fresh and original treatment of Christian spirituality. The elements she speaks of—water, wind, earth, and fire—are of course not elements as contemporary science understand them, but Paintner's work is closer to poetry than science, as she reflects on the metaphorical powers of these old-style elements and selects poetry and prayers that engage them. Her chapters include ideas for reflection and prayer, as well as guides for lectiones divinae with each of the elements. VERDICT A lovely, brief book reconnecting Christian spirituality with the natural world.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781933495224
Publisher:
Ave Maria Press
Publication date:
03/28/2010
Pages:
149
Sales rank:
534,139
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.37(d)

Meet the Author


Christine Valters Paintner serves as the Program Coordinator for the Ignatian Spirituality Center in Seattle and is also adjunct faculty at Seattle University's School of Theology and Ministry. Paintner is a Benedictine Oblate and serves as Art Editor for Presence: An International Journal of Spiritual Direction.

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Water, Wind, Earth, and Fire The Christian Practice of Praying with the Elements 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Big clearing with a big round tree. Inside the tree is the Leaders den....but a branch is where I will speak. ~Deathstar
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The alpha wold growls as he sees Farrah. He crouche don barking as he chased the wolf out.