Books: Joy, Light, Sorrow and Splendour
by Chris Irven
and heartfelt prayer is uplifting and, like all prayer, pleasing
to God. But for most of us, most of the time it is difficult.
The friends of Jesus found it so and asked him to teach them
how to pray. He gave them and us a simple form of words covering
the main objectives of prayer: thanks and praise, repentance,
and entreaty for our bodily and spiritual needs. This ‘Lord’s
Prayer’, used by one third of the world’s population,
enables us to pray whether we feel fervent or not: it has
succinctness and structure.
A mantra has structure too, defined as a constantly repeated
prayer accompanied by meditation. And that’s the snag – ‘accompanied
by meditation.’ The rosary is a Christian mantra, but
the trick is to meditate on a thought while speaking words
often only vaguely connected with the thought. This book,
with 21 beautiful coloured illustrations and its profound
but light touch, tackles that problem in a uniquely original
way. Using the basic rosary form and the prescribed 20 episodes
in the life of Jesus as topics for meditation, it punctuates
each episode ten times by stepping through and fleshing out
the topic frame by frame. In slowing the pace from a race
to a stroll it allows time for heart and mind to engage.
The effect is startling and fruitful: each meditation becomes
a spiritual meal in itself, making the recitation of a full
rosary almost too much to take in, one might even say over
the top. The prayed rosary, already pleasing to God, becomes
uplifting and delightful to the prayer too.
ISBN : 978-1-906385-01-9
Price: £6.00 + £1.60 p&p
by Chris Irven • Chris