8 episodes

Turning to the Mystics is a podcast for people searching for something more meaningful, intimate and richly present in the divine gift of their lives. James Finley, clinical psychologist and Living School faculty, offers a modern take on the historical contemplative practices of Christian mystics like Teresa of Avila, Thomas Merton, John of the Cross among others. Leaning into their experiences can become a gateway to hope, healing and oneness. Together with Kirsten Oates from the Center for Action and Contemplation, they explore listener questions and examine their own paths as modern contemplatives in this beautiful and broken world.

Turning to The Mystics with James Finley Center for Action and Contemplation

    • Christianity

Turning to the Mystics is a podcast for people searching for something more meaningful, intimate and richly present in the divine gift of their lives. James Finley, clinical psychologist and Living School faculty, offers a modern take on the historical contemplative practices of Christian mystics like Teresa of Avila, Thomas Merton, John of the Cross among others. Leaning into their experiences can become a gateway to hope, healing and oneness. Together with Kirsten Oates from the Center for Action and Contemplation, they explore listener questions and examine their own paths as modern contemplatives in this beautiful and broken world.

    Thomas Merton: Session 4

    Thomas Merton: Session 4

    Please note: CAC Podcasts will run regular programming on each show's usual release day. On Wednesdays, we will release special episodes specifically addressing the pandemic and providing contemplative resources for our community.
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    This is the fourth episode of eight that focuses on the mystic, Thomas Merton. In the spirit of Lectio Divina, James Finley re-visits Thomas Merton’s prayer from Thoughts in Solitude that he touched on in Session 2. In this session, Jim turns it into a reflective prayer and guides us into better ways of understanding ourselves, our lives in the presence of God, and how God sustains and guides us as Jim finishes with a meditative practice.  
    For the transcript to this podcast, you can find it here.  
    To learn more, visit jamesfinley.org  
    Turning to the Mystics is a podcast by the Center for Action and Contemplation. We'd love to hear your thoughts, comments or feedback. To do so, email us at podcasts@cac.org
    This podcast is made possible, thanks to the generosity of our donors. If you would love to support the ongoing work of the Center for Action and Contemplation and the continued work of our podcasts, you can donate at cac.org/podcastsupport Thank you!
    Have a question you’d like Jim or Kirsten to answer on a future episode? 
    Email us: podcasts@cac.org 
    Or, send us a voicemail: cac.org/voicemail 

    • 28 min
    Bonus: Sink Into the Taproot of Your Heart

    Bonus: Sink Into the Taproot of Your Heart

    In this special episode of Turning to the Mystics, James Finley is joined by Kirsten Oates to pause and reflect on this timely moment we are all in with the world facing the pandemic, COVID-19. James grounds his mystical teaching in light of the suffering world and offers guidance on how this contemplative grounding heightens our response to that suffering. In his inimitable poetic voice, James guides us through a visualization exercise, helps us ground our fear in love, and sensitizes us to our awakened hearts. Closing out this episode, Kirsten and James dialogue about their experiences in this time of uncertainty and personal suffering.  
    This is a podcast by the Center for Action and Contemplation. We'd love to hear your thoughts, comments or feedback. To do so, email us at podcasts@cac.org
    This podcast is made possible, thanks to the generosity of our donors. If you would love to support the ongoing work of the Center for Action and Contemplation and the continued work of our podcasts, you can donate at cac.org/podcastsupport Thank you!
    Have a question you’d like Jim or Kirsten to respond to on a future episode? 
    Email us: podcasts@cac.org 
    Or, send us a voicemail: cac.org/voicemail 

    • 52 min
    Thomas Merton: Session 3

    Thomas Merton: Session 3

    This is the third episode of eight that focuses on the mystic, Thomas Merton. In the spirit of Lectio Divina, James Finley reflects on Thomas Merton’s perspective of our ultimate identity. Drawing from a chapter in Merton’s New Seeds of Contemplation, Jim reflects on how we can recognize our True Self beyond the illusions of our ego, and finishes with a meditative practice.  
    For the transcript to this podcast, you can find it here. 
    To learn more, visit jamesfinley.org 
    Turning to the Mystics is a podcast by the Center for Action and Contemplation. We'd love to hear your thoughts, comments or feedback. To do so, email us at podcasts@cac.org
    This podcast is made possible, thanks to the generosity of our donors. If you would love to support the ongoing work of the Center for Action and Contemplation and the continued work of our podcasts, you can donate at cac.org/podcastsupport Thank you!
    Have a question you’d like Jim or Kirsten to answer on a future episode?
    Email us: podcasts@cac.org
    Or, send us a voicemail: cac.org/voicemail 

    • 25 min
    Thomas Merton: Session 2

    Thomas Merton: Session 2

    This is the second episode of eight that focuses on the mystic, Thomas Merton. In the spirit of Lectio Divina, James Finley highlights a prayer from Merton’s Thoughts in Solitude, reflects on sustaining the fidelity to communion with God so that it can touch the whole world, and finishes with a meditative practice.  
    To learn more, visit jamesfinley.org 
    For the transcript to this podcast, you can find it here.
    Turning to the Mystics is a podcast by the Center for Action and Contemplation.We'd love to hear your thoughts, comments or feedback. To do so, email us at podcasts@cac.org
    This podcast is made possible, thanks to the generosity of our donors. If you would love to support the ongoing work of the Center for Action and Contemplation and the continued work of our podcasts, you can donate at cac.org/podcastsupport Thank you!
    Have a question you’d like Jim or Kirsten to answer on a future episode?
    Email us: podcasts@cac.org
    Or, send us a voicemail: cac.org/voicemail

    • 30 min
    Thomas Merton: Session 1

    Thomas Merton: Session 1

    This is the first episode of eight that focuses on the mystic, Thomas Merton. In the tenor of the ancient practice of Lectio Divina, James Finley begins with a seminal passage from Merton’s New Seeds of Contemplation, reflects on the qualitive essence of the spirit of this text and finishes with a meditative practice.
    To learn more, visit jamesfinley.org
    Turning to the Mystics is a podcast by the Center for Action and Contemplation. We'd love to hear your thoughts, comments or feedback. To do so, email us at podcasts@cac.org
    This podcast is made possible, thanks to the generosity of our donors. If you would love to support the ongoing work of the Center for Action and Contemplation and the continued work of our podcasts, you can donate at cac.org/podcastsupport Thank you!
    For the transcript to this podcast, you can find it here.
    Have a question you'd like Jim or Kirsten to answer on a future episode? 
    Email us: podcasts@cac.org
    Or, send us a voicemail: cac.org/voicemail

    • 22 min
    Turning to Thomas Merton

    Turning to Thomas Merton

    In this episode, Kirsten Oates and James Finley are in conversation about Jim’s approach to studying the mystics, how one might integrate their teachings into our daily lives, and most notably a background and sense of the mystic who is the focus of this first series, Thomas Merton. By the end of this episode you will have robust understanding of the life and work of Thomas Merton and his impact on James Finley. 
    To learn more, visit jamesfinley.org  
    Turning to the Mystics is a podcast by the Center for Action and Contemplation. We'd love to hear your thoughts, comments or feedback. To do so, email us at podcasts@cac.org
    This podcast is made possible, thanks to the generosity of our donors. If you would love to support the ongoing work of the Center for Action and Contemplation and the continued work of our podcasts, you can donate at cac.org/podcastsupport Thank you!
    For the transcript to this podcast, you can find it here.
    Have a question you'd like Jim or Kirsten to answer on a future episode?
    Email us: podcasts@cac.org
    Or, send us a voicemail: cac.org/voicemail

    • 53 min

Customer Reviews

Kiwi Pat ,

A treasure indeed!

This introduction session with Jim Finley (& Kirsten Oates) is beautifully recorded and paced - a gift for a wounded, vulnerable heart longing for the Oneness that already is... Thank-you for this treasure. Here’s to the next one!

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