Finding God through Meditation – Mental Prayer & Centering Prayer

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St Peter of Alcantara on Mental Prayer
Finding God through Meditation

What is “centering prayer”? What did Sts Peter of Alcántara and Teresa of Avila teach about good prayer? Dan and Melissa reflect on the differences between good prayer and false prayer, as found in St Peter of Alcántara’s book Finding God through Meditation.

Topics/Questions covered in the show:

  • Are there incorrect ways to pray?
  • What did Jesus have to say about prayer?
  • How does the Catholic Church relate to non-Christian religions?
  • The asceticism of St Peter.
  • Do St Peter’s thoughts on prayer affirm or contradict St Teresa of Avila’s teaching?
  • Do we need to empty our minds in order to pray well?
  • How should we orient our minds for good prayer?
  • What does St Teresa mean by “human industry” regarding prayer?
  • Why are some methods of prayer good and others not good?
  • If the spiritual life is supposed to be simple, why is so much written about it?
  • Why are so many people drawn to centering prayer?


  • Finding God through Meditation – St. Peter of Alcántara
  • Finding God through Meditation ebook – St. Peter of Alcántara
  • Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation
  • EWTN Religious Catalogue – online
  • 30 Days with Teresa of Avila – Dan Burke and Anthony Lilles
  • John 14:21 – “…And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him…” – USCCB Bible link
  • Revelation 3:20 – “…If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, [then] I will enter his house and dine with him, and he with me.”
  • Quietism – New Advent link
  • John 4:4-42 – The Samaritan woman – USCCB Bible link
  • Nostra Aetate – Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions, a document of the Second Vatican Council, paragraph 2: “Indeed, she proclaims, and ever must proclaim Christ ‘the way, the truth, and the life’ (John 14:6), in whom men may find the fullness of religious life, in whom God has reconciled all things to Himself.”
  • John 14:6 – “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'” – USCCB Bible link
  • The Interior Castle Study Edition
  • Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on Some Aspects of Christian Meditation – Cardinal Ratzinger – website
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:23 – “May the God of peace himself make you perfectly holy and may you entirely, spirit, soul, and body, be preserved blameless for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – USCCB Bible link
  • Onething 2015 – Dan Burke speaking engagement, Kansas City (Dec. 28-31)
  • Pilgrimage 2016 to Avila with Dan Burke and Teresa Tomeo (March 28 – April 4, 2016)
  • To send questions about the 2016 Pilgrimage to Avila, click here:
  • For Call in questions for future shows 818-646-7729 — please leave your name, location, and question.
  • Click on the arrow below to listen to the show! Don’t forget to tell your friends about the show and help us get the word out. If the show is inspiring to you and you would like to help us make it a daily show, please click here to donate. All donors will receive a signed copy of your choice of Dan’s new books: Finding God through Meditation30 Days with Teresa of Avila, or Navigating the Interior Life. Click HERE for mobile devices or on the arrow below to listen to the show:

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