Here's the spiritual classic that will elevate your prayer life from the “ordinary” to the “supernatural” by exploring and guiding you through the five fundamental stages of prayer.
Contrary to popular belief, true progress in your prayer life is not solely a function of adherence to a fixed set of rules. Rather, it is governed almost entirely by the emerging fruits of your prayer as the Holy Spirit leads you to live a life ever more pleasing to God. Thus, progress in prayer is more of an art than a science. Few Christians become mystics not because few are called but because few figure out how to navigate the stages of prayer and leverage the fruits to achieve union with God.
Fr. Arintero will show you how to progress from simple vocal prayer to the depths of spiritual meditation. You'll learn how to “travel by foot” when those inevitable moments of dryness in prayer surface, and you'll learn how to maximize progress in times of deep consolation.
With the writings of Sts. Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Francis de Sales, and Thomas Aquinas as his touch points, Fr. Arintero explains what is happening to the soul as it begins to enter into union with our Lord, including such manifestations as locutions and intellectual visions. Additionally, you will learn what to expect at each stage of contemplation, as well as the corresponding gifts many receive, such as ecstasies and raptures. Through the wisdom of the mystics, Fr. Arintero unpacks these mysteries and shares insights about:
- The importance of making specific resolutions to grow in virtue
- Why times of both great and light aridity are natural
- How God pours out the gift of wisdom on souls through prayer
- Why attachment to specific methods of prayer can hinder God's movement
- What distractions in prayer may indicate and how to approach them
- How to prepare yourself for prayer of quiet and infused recollection
You'll also receive guidance from the saints and mystics on difficulties in prayer, the fruits of the Holy Spirit, passive and active purgation, and the practice of mental prayer.
There is no authentic active life without a fervent contemplative life. Fr. Arintero will teach you “not to think much but to love much” in prayer. You will glean how to attain peace and joy in God's presence in this life and the next. By striving to grow in virtue and union with God, you will be emboldened to work for His kingdom and the salvation of souls. Through prayer, your charity will become more ardent, and you will be an instrument of God's healing in the world.
288 pages, paperback