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Simply Pray

A Modern Spiritual Practice to Deepen Your Life

Erik Walker Wikstrom

“Let us think of prayer as an opening of one’s self to the depths of life—your own life and the greater Life of which we are all a part. Whatever else it might be—a conversation with the Divine, an internal dialog with your own inner wisdom, a practice of calming and centering—prayer can be understood as a movement into and through the Mystery of Life.”
—from the Introduction

Simply Pray presents a unique spiritual practice—one that provides an inclusive understanding of the sacred and is deeply rooted in all of the world’s great religions. Focusing on structure, Wikstrom identifies four types of traditional prayer—naming, knowing, listening, and loving. Building from this foundation, Simply Pray offers readers a prayer bead practice that is free from any specific religious expression and can be adapted to the user’s own religious needs and language. In addition, Wikstrom includes practical suggestions for composing original, unscripted prayers that can be used with the beads.

A student of Zen Buddhism for nearly 20 years, Erik Walker Wikstrom has a master’s degree in divinity from Harvard Divinity School and advanced training in spiritual guidance from the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation. He is the author of Teacher, Guide, Companion: Rediscovering Jesus in a Secular World (Skinner House Books).  

Praise for Simply Pray:

Simply Pray is an excellent and much needed bridge for people who struggle with a way to pray that is authentic to them and their sense of the Holy. Not only does Wikstrom help readers to understand the four fundamental forms of prayer shared by all major religions, but he offers a practical new form of prayer based on a modern use of prayer beads. A great many people realize that they need a fresh, steady spiritual practice and an understanding that opens their larger being to the Sacred amidst cultural pressures. This book goes a long way toward feeding the hunger of such people with a nourishing spiritual feast. You will not be disappointed in the practical yet deep wisdom drawn from the world’s faith traditions found throughout its pages.”
—Rev. Dr. Tilden Edwards, Founder and Senior Fellow, Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation

“Wikstrom writes about a topic as slippery and elusive as prayer in a style that is both clear and accessible, while maintaining a profound sense of mystery. His guidance is at once down to earth and deeply wise, and his tone both serious and tinged with a sense of well rooted humor bubbling just under the surface.”
—Ethel Hornbeck, Parish Assistant for Spiritual Formation, Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church, West Virginia

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Last updated on Wednesday, June 2, 2010.

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