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John Main, Desert Father and Celtic Monk

One of the greatest challenges that Christianity faces today is the practical rediscovery of its age-old traditions of prayer and contemplation, and one of the principle attempts to do this in recent times was begun by the Benedictine monk and priest John Main. Bede Griffiths called him “the most important guide in the Church today”, for his teaching of a simple clear way of prayer that helps discover our Divine spark within as children of God.

Kim Nataraja, a teaching authority at the World Community of Christian Meditation, is a great admirer of John Main. She writes: “John Main’s teaching does not take theology and belief as its starting point but focuses instead on personal experience in prayer and the way this leads to self-knowledge of the whole of our being.

It is in Malaysia that John Main first came across the simple way of praying with a mantra. He then later discovered the same way of prayer in the teaching of John Cassian, a 4th century Christian monk, who had sat at the feet of the Desert Fathers and Mothers and had summarised their teaching in his writings.

There is therefore a clear connection between John Main and the early Church Fathers, like Clement and Origen and the Desert Fathers and Mothers. There is another fascinating, albeit lesser-known, connection between John Main and contemplative prayer: John’s family used to live in Ballinskelligs on the western tip of Kerry, which is also an ancient monastic site within view of the Skellig Michael where Celtic monks sought solitude for deep silent prayer. The striking similarities between these two groups of monks, one in the North African desert and the other at the edge of the endless ocean, is one aspect that we will explore during the weekend. In doing so we will also explore the essence of John Main's guidance on meditation and the way it leads to personal growth.

The practice of meditation, which is at the core of John Main’s teaching, will form an important part of the weekend.”

Kim Nataraja joined the World Community for Christian Meditation in 1993 and, in 1999, started to help Laurence Freeman OSB to guide and co-ordinate the International School. Although she stepped down from being the Director of the International School in July 2016, she continues to coordinate the School in Europe. She is the author of several books, including ‘Journey to the Heart’ and ‘Sharing the Gift’. She is also a very experienced retreat and workshop leader. Her courses at Ammerdown are always well received, as evidenced by this comment by a past participant: “Kim is truly outstanding. She both encouraged and challenged us with wisdom, love, kindness, acceptance and humour.”

 

Led by: Kim Nataraja

Please arrive by 6pm on Friday. Course ends with lunch on Sunday.

One of the greatest challenges that Christianity faces today is the practical rediscovery of its age-old traditions of prayer and contemplation, and one of the main attempts to do this in recent times was begun by the Benedictine monk and priest John Main. Bede Griffiths called him “the most important guide in the Church today”, for his teaching of a simple clear way of prayer that helps discover the Divine spark within as children of God.

Kim Nataraja, a teaching authority at the World Community of Christian Meditation, is a great admirer of John Main. She writes: “John Main’s teaching does not take theology and belief as its starting point but focuses instead on personal experience in prayer and the way this leads to self-knowledge of the whole of our being.

It was in Malaysia that John Main first came across the simple way of praying with a mantra. He then later discovered the same way of prayer in the teaching of John Cassian, a 4th century Christian monk, who had sat at the feet of the Desert Fathers and Mothers and had summarised their teaching in his writings.

There is therefore a clear connection between John Main and the early Church Fathers, like Clement and Origen and the Desert Fathers and Mothers. There is another fascinating, albeit lesser-known, connection between John Main and contemplative prayer: John’s family used to live in Ballinskelligs on the western tip of Kerry, which is also an ancient monastic site within view of the Skellig Michael where Celtic monks sought solitude for deep silent prayer. The striking similarities between these two groups of monks, one in the North African desert and the other at the edge of the endless ocean, are aspects that we will explore during the weekend. In doing so we will also explore the essence of John Main's guidance on meditation and the way it leads to personal growth.”

The practice of meditation, which is at the core of John Main’s teaching, will form an important part of the weekend.

Kim Nataraja joined the World Community for Christian Meditation in 1993 and, in 1999, started to help Laurence Freeman OSB to guide and co-ordinate the International School. Although she stepped down from being the Director of the International School in July 2016, she continues to coordinate the School in Europe. She is the author of several books, including ‘Journey to the Heart’ and ‘Sharing the Gift’. She is also a very experienced retreat and workshop leader. Her courses at Ammerdown are always well received, as evidenced by this comment by a past participant: “Kim is truly outstanding. She both encouraged and challenged us with wisdom, love, kindness, acceptance and humour.”

Book a place

Choose between residential or non-residential below and then click Add to Basket.

Residential

R2317-R

John Main , Desert Father and Celtic Monk

Starts: 9th June, 2017

Ends: 11th June, 2017

Full cost: £240.00
You will pay a deposit now and you will be contacted for the balance within two weeks of the start of the course.
Deposit: £65.00

This course is nearly sold out - please contact Ammerdown to check for availability.
+44 176 143 3709
admin@ammerdown.org

Non-residential

R2317-NR

John Main, Desert Father and Celtic Monk

Starts: 9th June, 2017

Ends: 11th June, 2017

Full cost: £160.00
You will pay a deposit now and you will be contacted for the balance within two weeks of the start of the course.
Deposit: £65.00

This course is nearly sold out - please contact Ammerdown to check for availability.
+44 176 143 3709
admin@ammerdown.org

Special offers:

Multi-purchase: If you book three or more residential courses all at once, Ammerdown will give you 5% discount on the total fees (N.B. this 5% discount does not apply when a bursary has already been agreed)

Extend your stay: Subject to availability, you are welcome to extend your stay before or after your course. If you choose to do so, Ammerdown will give you a 5% discount on our standard ‘Private Stays’ rates: please contact the centre to arrange this.