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The Cloister Walk

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How would you answer the author’s question: “ Are monks wasting their time in seeking to convert themselves, and the world, from evil? Visitors can still see the clearly laid out foundations of the abbey, parts of the richly decorated cloister walk and the thatched monks’ lavatory - the only one of its kind in Britain.

What is the role of silence in spiritual life, and why is silence so hard to come by in our culture? The nitpicking fingers of the rational mind will disturb the poem’s delicate roots if allowed in too early. They gossip, crack jokes, fall asleep in church, suffer through depression and doubt like the rest of us. How does the Word of God provide her with “ a hope that no modern therapeutic approach can give” (p.e., creeds) serve to drive people away from religion by functioning as “a grocery list of beliefs that one has to comprehend and assent to before one dare show one’s face in church. Not only has our religion abandoned it, we distrust it in our literature and reject as useless its expression, unless it is a lesson on how to deconstruct poems for the purposes of a test later. Here, she compresses these years of experience into the diary of one liturgical year, offering observations on subjects ranging from celibacy to dealing with emotions to Christmas music.

She found herself deeply moved and spiritually enriched by the daily Liturgy of the Hours, the oral recitation of Scripture, and the spiritual practice of hospitality within this community. And so, living in a community as dedicated to words as monks and nuns do, do the religious communities she interacts with. Kathleen Norris, a married woman with a thoroughly Protestant background and often more doubt than faith, finds herself, somewhat to her own surprise, on two extended residencies at St John's Abbey in Minnesota. To be fair, there are some interesting bits in here about various saints, and Norris's reflections on the Psalms contain some insights.The author’s spiritual quest required unlearning the lessons and attitudes about church from her childhood. They both use their time to inwardly reflect on who they are at the moment, and to get to know the monks and nuns they’re living with. For the past 35 years, a small band of dedicated friends have poured their hearts and love into Friends of Silence. I think I’ve maybe got some of it in the end though- she talks about how life without metaphor is unbearable to her. Monks and nuns are often seen in such a light, as useless figures who hide from society and whose devotion leaves out one of the greatest commandments, spreading the gospel.

DESCRIPTION: Located in beautiful inner Cloisters area of Devington Park is this light and spacious first floor two bedroom apartment. Dust Jackets are not guaranteed and when still present, they will have various degrees of tear and damage.The property also benefits from the use of all the communal grounds and facilities, plus allocated and visitors parking. For those of us like yours truly, who could happily live in a fortress of solitude surrounded by books and cats, this is an interesting take on the strength of human bonds and the necessity of community.

A married woman, throughly Protestant and often with more doubts than faith, Katheen Norris finds herself drawn to the ancient practice of monasticism, to a community of celibrate men whose days are centred around a rigid schedule of prayer and work. Muchelney Abbey was thought to have been first established under a foundation charter from King Cynewulf in 762. An award-winning poet, Kathleen Norris brings her appreciation for language and metaphor to the reading of Bible, especially the psalms, and shares the way she slowly, sometimes painfully, “let words work the earth of her heart. Part record of her time among the Benedictines, part meditation on various aspects of monastic life, The Cloister Walk demonstrates, from the rare perspective of someone who is both an insider and outsider, how immersion in the cloistered world -- its liturgy, its ritual, its sense of community -- can impart meaning to everyday events and deepen our secular lives.Scripture, like poetry, is rife with metaphoric language, and in metaphor, Norris finds a bridge to connect the head with the heart. From letters signed by Disney himself to classic children’s books or ephemera, be sure to check out some of the collectible Walt Disney books on Biblio! The author conveys several times her complete astonishment at finding herself a resident in a monastery.

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