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Holistic Christianity: The Vision of Catholic Mysticism

Holistic Christianity: The Vision of Catholic Mysticism
1.50 lbs



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Index , Notes , Bibliography
$19.95 (19.95)

"A fresh and creative approach to discovering the wholistic character of the Catholic Mystical experience. Let Holistic Christianity enlarge the horizons of our journey into God and guide us on the contemplative path. A resource rich in wisdom."
—Edith Prendergast, rsc, Archdiocesan Director, Religious Education Los Angeles

"All being is one, good, and true according to the Scholastics. Dr. Conti, firmly grounded in the traditions of the Church, brings these attributes to every level of human existence and experience and also to divine revelation. Holistic Christianity is a veritable Catechism of the Catholic Church from a mystical point of view, truly a contemplative Analogy of Faith with all creation. It is readable and practical with an excellent bibliography."
—Father William Meninger, St. Benedict's Monastery, one of the founders of the contemplative prayer movement and author of The Loving Search for God: Contemplative Prayer and the Cloud of Unknowing, and 1012 Monastery Road

"Holistic Christianity is a beautiful book. It will be a bridge for many over the troubled waters between Eastern mysticism and Catholic teaching. Written in a poetic, contemplative style with practical spiritual exercises, it invites the reader to plunge into the realities described."
—Ronda Chervin, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor of Philosophy and Spirituality, Our Lady of Corpus Christi and author of Prayer of the Women Mystics

Consider a headband of gold, and a handful of sapphires, rubies, emeralds, and diamonds. Separately they are dazzling. But when the precious stones are elegantly set within the headband, we have a royal crown.

Too often the insights and practices of Christianity are examined in isolation from one another, obscuring their unitive radiance. Holistic Christianity reverses this fragmentation in a surprising way. It uncovers fifteen hidden “Holisms” of the Christian faith, braiding them into a luminous unity, the soul of Christianity.

Taken together, these great Holisms span immensities—earth and heaven, the seen and the unseen—and yet are intensely personal, poetic, immediate, soul-centering. It will be impossible to read this book and think in the same way about Christianity, or your life, again.

Full of intuitive wisdom, the comprehensive vision of Christianity stirring between the covers of Holistic Christianity will not so much persuade you from the outside, but will awaken sleeping understanding coded in your soul, evoking an unfolding from within.

“This book points to and describes where we are surely heading: full incarnationalism. The salvation that God is offering the universe is much more whole, much more now, much better than we dared to imagine. Joe Conti shares with us a Christ who is bigger than our small humanity, and a humanity that is still capable of such a Christ.”
—Fr. Richard Rohr, author of Everything Belongs:The Gift of Contemplative Prayer

“Joseph Conti draws from a wide range of sources in developing a vision of Christian life that integrates into a single whole the principles of holistic medicine, psychological healing, and contemplative spirituality.”
—James Finley, author of Merton’s Palace of Nowhere

"Conti picks up where Maritain left off in using Thomism as the basis for understanding mystical and spiritual experience. He demonstrates the perennial freshness of the perennial philosophy."
— Deal W. Hudson, Executive Director, Morley Institute for Church and Culture

“Dr. Conti initiated a personal dialogue with me from his very first page, and he faithfully sustained our relationship as he led me along the tried and true paths of Catholic spirituality…. It is clear that Conti has completed the exacting research at every juncture of his study, respecting the classical sources on Christian mysticism even as he proposes his own carefully measured insights.”
—George Saint Laurent, Ph.D., author of Spirituality and World Religions, Professor Emeritus, California State University at Fullerton

“A highly accessible, engagingly direct and deeply informed practice-oriented text.”
—Philip Novak, Chairman, Dept. of Philosophy and Religion, Dominican College of San Rafael, author of The World’s Wisdom

“…a novel breakthrough, assisted by vivid illustrations…”
—Dr. Robert Ellwood, Professor Emeritus of Religion, University of Southern California, author of Mysticism and Religion

Breakthrough to a serene world beyond reactive thought through Christian meditation and contemplation.

Holistic Christianity presents in one volume the splendor of the Catholic mystics' total vision, which can be lost in a bit by bit approach.

"New seeds of contemplation" sown by Thomas Merton come to fruition in the pages of Holistic Christianity.


Introduction: What is Holistic Christianity?
Chapter 1: Discovering Christianity’s Mystic Heart
Chapter 2: How to Experience God’s Presence Vividly
Chapter 3: The Thrice-Loved God, The Holism of the Absolute
Chapter 4: The Universe is the Kaleidoscopic Shadow of Christ
Chapter 5: Lightning Made Eternal, The Incarnation of God
Chapter 6: The Gospel According to the Christian Mystics
Chapter 7: The Ego: Truly Oriented to God
Chapter 8: The Mind-Body Partnership
Chapter 9: The Path to Union with God According to the Mystics
Chapter 10 The Song of the Grateful Soul
Chapter 11: Mystical Ecstasy: The Great Clue to Our Destiny in God
Chapter 12: The Bread of the Mystics: The Blessed Sacrament
Chapter 13: The Adventure of Being: Philosophy in a Christian Key
Chapter 14: The Mystical Body of Christ: The Church
Chapter 15: The Bride of Christ, Cometh She Like a Dancer
Chapter 16: How the Trinity is the Secret Axis of All Religions
Chapter 17: The Happy Trinity is Her Home: The Beatific Vision

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Customer Reviews

  • Author: keith hansen
    This book by Conti is insightful on many levels and his imagery is demonstrating certain posits he makes are interesting and make the read fun. This work, in my estimation, reaches to a reader like myself who is decently read on the subject, but its purpose seems to be to reach the person born into christianity but hadn't gotten involved until adulthood. I would and have recommended it to many friends males and females, Catholics and Protestant alike- and have heard praises.

    My life will not be the same after reading this book, I hope yours is effected the same way.
  • Author: Ric Williams
    This book far transcends any other "catechistical handbook" I've read for the way it inspires and describes Christianity's mystical depths. In a thoughtful, clear, and devotional way, Dr. Conti begins by taking readers through two guided prayers that prepare us for contemplating the essence of the Trinity.

    Perhaps I responded to this book so much because my background is similar to Dr. Conti's. When I was growing up, Christianity seemed to me rigid and dogmatic, especially compared to sophisticated Eastern wisdom traditions. As a young man, I felt that unless I understood how Christianity was related to Buddhism, I could not understand, or accept, either. Dr. Conti places the two traditions into context by describing the Christian Trinity as a Holism of the Absolute, with three dimensions: (1) the transcendent, uncreated Godhead, (2) the Cosmic Christ about us, and (3) the immanent Holy Spirit within us. For Dr. Conti, the Christian Trinity is the revelation of the holistic unity between (among others) the transcendent tradition of Buddhism, the immanent tradition of Hinduism, and the nature tradition of Taoism.

    For Christians, Christianity is a leap of faith that allows us to accept that God incarnated once and uniquely on earth. On the surface, this idea may appear "dualistic"-separating us from God. Dr. Conti's extraordinary contribution is describing how Christ's incarnation is not "dualistic," nor "non-dualistic," (to use a popular conception today), but "holistic" because it shows us how this unity works for each of us as we are ontologically transformed into Christ.

    To illustrate this transformation, he uses frequent and copious examples from scripture, theologians, Early Fathers, and saints to describe the relationship between our ego, our consciousness, and the Trinitarian God as we encounter the mystery of the Eucharist.

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