Growing in Love and Wisdom: Tibetan Buddhist Sources for Christian Meditation

ISBN : 9780199862627

Susan J. Stabile
272 ページ
147 x 214 mm

In Growing in Love and Wisdom, Susan Stabile draws on a unique dual perspective to explore the value of interreligious dialogue, the essential spiritual dynamics that operate across faith traditions, and the many fruitful ways Buddhist meditation practices can deepen Christian prayer. Raised as a Catholic, Stabile devoted 20 years of her life to practicing Buddhism and was ordained as a Tibetan Buddhist nun before returning to Catholicism in 2001. She begins the book by examining the values and principles shared by the two faith traditions, focusing on the importance of prayer-particularly contemplative prayer-to both Christianity and Tibetan Buddhism. Both traditions seek to effect a fundamental transformation in the lives of believers, and both stress the need for experiences that have deep emotional resonance, that go beyond the level of concepts to touch the heart. Stabile illuminates the similarities between Tibetan Buddhist meditations and Christian forms of prayer such as Ignatian Contemplation and Lectio Divina; she explores as well such guided Buddhist practices as Metta and Tonglen, which cultivate compassion and find echoes in Jesus' teachings about loving one's enemies and transcending self-cherishing. The heart of the book offers 15 Tibetan Buddhist practices adapted to a contemplative Christian perspective. Stabile provides clear instructions on how to do these meditations as well as helpful commentary on each, explaining its purpose and the relation between the original and her adaptation. Throughout, she highlights the many remarkably close parallels in the teachings of Jesus and Buddha. Arguing that engagement between religions offers mutual enrichment and greater understanding of both traditions, Growing in Love and Wisdom shows how Buddhist meditation can be fruitfully joined to Christian prayer.


Part I: How We Think about Other Faith Traditions
Chapter 1: The Value of Interreligious Dialogue
Chapter 2: Core Truths that Operate Across Faith Traditions
Part II: Adapting Prayer Practices from Another Faith Tradition
Chapter 3: The Importance of Contemplation and Affective Experience
Chapter 4: Why Look to Tibetan Buddhist Meditation?
Part III: Analytical Meditations and Commentary
Chapter 5: Friend, Enemy, Stranger
Chapter 6: Tonglen
Chapter 7: Kindness of (M)other Sentient Beings
Chapter 8: Exchanging Self and Others
Chapter 9: The Four Immeasurables
Chapter 10: Meditation on Compassion
Chapter 11: Giving the Four Elements
Chapter 12: Perfect Human Rebirth
Chapter 13: Death
Chapter 14: Impermanence
Chapter 15: Overcoming Anger
Chapter 16: The Eight Worldly Concerns
Chapter 17: Taking Refuge
Chapter 18: Emanating as the Deity
Chapter 19: Meditating on the I
Part IV: Other Meditations and Practices
Chapter 20: Meditations to Develop Concentration and Mindfulness
Chapter 21: Other Practices
Suggestions for further reading


Susan Stabile is the Robert and Marion Short Distinguished Chair in Law, University of St. Thomas School of Law, Minneapolis. She is also a spiritual director, trained in the Ignatian tradition.