Item description for Sadhana, a Way to God: Christian Exercises in Eastern Form by Anthony De Mello...
Overview A series of spiritual exercises which combine Eastern meditation techniques with Christian prayer is designed to aid in achieving inner peace
Truly a one-of-a-kind, how-to-do-it book, this small volume responds to a very real hunger for self-awareness and holistic living. It consists of a series of spiritual exercises for entering the contemplative state -- blending psychology, spiritual therapy, and practices from both Eastern and Western traditions. Anthony de Mello offers here an unparalleled approach to inner peace that brings the "whole" person to prayer -- body and soul, heart and mind, memory and imagination. In forty-seven exercises that teach things such as awareness of physical sensations, stillness, healing of hurtful memories, and consciousness of self and world, de Mello succeeds in helping all who have ever experienced prayer as difficult, dull, or frustrating. The essential key, he notes, is to journey beyond mere thought-forms and discover satisfying new depths in prayer "from the heart." This allows for a greater sense of awareness amid silence, and disposes the one who prays to untold riches, spiritual fulfillment, and ultimately, a mystical experience of God-centeredness. Drawing on Scripture, as well as insights from Eastern and Western spiritual masters, the author has a unique appeal that transcends time, culture, and religious background. For many years a bestseller in the English language, "Sadhana" has now been translated into more than two dozen foreign languages. Readers the world over have eagerly received this sincere spiritual leader, who has led many toward the wealth of insight and spirit that dwells within them.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 7.95" Width: 5.79" Height: 0.4" Weight: 0.3 lbs.
Release Date Sep 1, 1984
ISBN 0385196148 ISBN13 9780385196147
Availability 0 units.
More About Anthony De Mello
Anthony de Mello, S.J., was the director of the Sadhana Institute of Pastoral Counseling in Pune, India. A member of the Jesuit province of Bombay (Mumbai), he was known throughout the world for his writings and spiritual conferences. Although he died suddenly in 1987, through his many books, including Awareness, Sadhana, and The Song of the Bird, which have been translated into more than thirty- five languages, he leaves a rich legacy of spiritual teaching.
Serious Christian meditation with an Eastern twist Sep 24, 2006
Anthony de Mello was a Jesuit spiritual director and writer, prior to his sudden and untimely death in 1987.
I first read Sadhana probably 12 or 14 years ago. This time, I brought it with me into the hospital as a back-up read, but didn't start it until I came home. The book is in three sections and divided into 47 "exercises" or short chapters, and should be read over a period of time - I took almost five weeks, reading one or two exercises a day.
The three sections are entitled Awareness, mostly having to do with various thought, concentration, and breathing exercises. I used exercise five for four weeks (you'll have to get the book to find out what exercise five is!)
The second section is Fantasy but perhaps would be better labeled Imagination, and is somewhat Ignatian. Imagine yourself in a Gospel story, imagine you are dying and say good-bye to your body, the joyful (and sorrowful) mysteries of your life - stuff like that.
The last section is Devotions, with lessons like The "Benedictine" method, the Jesus Prayer, the Prayer of Intercession.
The book is very good and once read can serve as a sort of reference - go back and re-use the things you found valuable. Of course the trick is to actually do the exercises over a period of time. Time is important - it takes time for the value of these approaches to affect you. Or as some would say, to "sink in".
I guarantee that when you finish the book you will NOT be able to levitate, have visions, etc, but you probably will be a calmer and saner person. Not bad.
Great primer for the fundamentals of Christian prayer Apr 28, 2004
Whether or not de Mello was "enlightened" or not when he wrote this (based on another reviewer's comments), this book serves as a classic primer for the fundamentals of Christian prayer. It includes much of the eastern influence which de Mello became more associated with toward the end of his life. The book talks much about meditation, lectio divina, and the spiritual exercises. De Mello's contribution here is to attempt to bridge a gap in Christian prayer with some non-traditional methods. It is an invitation to a deeper form of prayer, where communication with God comes through the heart. Indeed, this form of prayer is all the more Christian in my opinion for its observance of the type of prayer Jesus himself used according to scripture.
Companion for Meditators Mar 10, 2004
This book, contrary to some of the criticism it has received through the years, is a classic resource for meditation and prayer for those of us on a spiritual journey; and if you ask me, it doesn't much matter what religion you happen to practice. The word "Sadhana" has a myriad of meanings, so it reminds me of Ludwig Wittgenstein's old slogan, "Don't give me the meaning, give me the use!" And the use, my dear friends, is esoteric for each and every one of us. Sadhana could be described as a personal understanding of God, or discipline-even spiritual practice.
In this book Anthony offers 47 exercises derived from Zen Buddhist sources, Christian scripture, modern psychology, and even yoga; de Mello's palate was always an eclectic one. He was a true master when it came time for him to speak to an audience, retaining this mysterious ability to completely captivate all those in the room. In some sense, what de Mello prescribes in this work is basically zazen meditation (Zen Buddhist form of meditation); even going so far as facing our corpse in order to live freely as though we were already dead. Wonderful advice. This book is much more than "cognized prayer"-no-this one talks about devoting your entire being into the act, not simply your words. An earlier reviewer remarked that Anthony would not recommend this book; I don't know of such information, and I certainly don't find him to be the type to make `claims of enlightenment.' I would have smacked him if he said, "I wrote this before my enlightenment." Such a naughty word - "BEFORE." Nora gives the fundamentalists side of the book, of which this work will never satisfy such folk. I'm sorry, but Anthony de Mello was a mystic, not a poisonous snake dancer. Nora demonstrates the Vatican's take in a nutshell, yet if you look at the early Gnostic texts, it's all right there; perfectly in line with what de Mello speaks about in here. We must knock inward, to realize there NEVER WAS AN INSIDE OR OUTSIDE. Anyway, I got off subject a bit. Great book!
The Perfect Gift Book Nov 8, 2003
Sadhana is a book that continuously leaves my possession into the hands of friends. It is the best written, most comprehensive book on meditation; as suitable for the beginner as it is for someone like myself who has been meditating for almost 30 years.
Although deMello intended the book to be a guide for group meditation, it serves the individual as well. In Sadhana, deMello has conjoined Eastern and Western techniques whose origins include Ignatian and Benedictine methods, yoga, Zen Buddhism, and Christian mysticism. The result is 47 exercises that are broken down into three groups; awareness, fantasy, and devotion. deMello's Jesuit proficiency as a teacher is reflected as he guides the reader through each exercise.
I have supplemented my meditation schedule with several of these exercises and as a result, my spiritual development has become enriched.
Written before his Self-Realization! Jul 22, 2003
NOT recommendable!!! Reason: Anthony De Mello 'himself' didn't recommend this book!
You can read his own words concerning this book in "We heard the bird sing", a compilation of memories from people who knew him personally and studied under his personal guidance. I found this book in India. There he "regrets" to have written the book: "Sadhana: A Way to God". It was his first book but at that time he doesn't 'really' reached God-Realization. His ego 'thought' he reached it. His regret was enormous because at that time this one was his bestselled book throughout the world.
The book he himself recommended the most was "The Song of the Bird". He called it his "most dangerous" book, a book full of heart-enlightening stories from all spiritual traditions. Another book of De Mello 'I' highly recommend for earnest seekers is "The Way to Love". I love this book!!! "Awareness" is also 'authentic stuff'!
"Contact with God" is also not recommendable for spiritual seekers! Definitely it is also not from (the awakened) Anthony De Mello. He never 'wrote' this book: It is a compilation of his (?) words 'after his death', but definitely not words from (the awakened) Anthony De Mello. "The Way to Love" is also a compilation 'after his death' but these words are truly from the awakened Anthony De Mello.