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How To Pray Always

Item Number: 2431

Catalog Code: HTPA-DIS

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How To Pray Always

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Is it really possible -- or necessary -- to “pray without ceasing”?


Yes. Here’s how

There are two wrong ways to respond to Our Lord’s command to “pray without ceasing,” writes Raoul Plus, SJ, in this compact spiritual classic from the 1920s. One is to undertake “a succession of religious exercises one after the other” -- a clear impossibility, even for saints. The second is to dismiss it as a deliberate overstatement, exhorting us merely to pray more.



The right way to respond, demonstrates Fr. Plus -- a famed French writer whose popular books appeared in English translation -- is laid out in the first section, along with the other fundamental principles of “a life of perfect recollection.” In the second section, Fr. Plus explains their practical application:


  • How we can be constantly united with God without constantly thinking about Him
  • The traditional, all-important distinction between the act of prayer and the state of prayer
  • Our Lord shows how to practice the state of prayer
  • Two habits -- one moral, one spiritual -- that are indispensable to the state of prayer. How to cultivate both
  • Why discipline of the will is central to a life of “continual recollection”
  • Three ways of directing your will toward God
  • Prerequisites for turning all daily tasks into a prayer. The importance of “pure intention”
  • The “art” of keeping watch over one’s thoughts and clearing the brain of idle fancies
  • The three conditions for success in prayer
  • The fundamental from which “all the technique of prayer can be deduced”
  • How to drive away the causes of distractions in prayer
  • Three types of difficulties in prayer, and their cures
  • Why St. Ignatius recommends preparing the subject of prayer the preceding evening.
  • Why he recommends not kneeling immediately
  • “Interior silence”: what it is, and why you cannot live a Christian life without it
  • The “line of demarcation” that divides the “truly interior soul” from the “pious dilettante”
  • Two common ways of separating ourselves from God
  • One prayer method that is especially suited for beginners, or those who are tired
  • When, and why, books of meditations should not be used
  • How to persevere in prayer. How to cope with periods of desolation
  • Pitfalls that lessen the value of prayer
  • Dangers of confusing consolations in prayer for special graces
  • Why prayer often seems more difficult as the soul proceeds on the path to perfection
  • One dangerous fiction about prayer
  • The need to exert ourselves in prayer. But how?
  • The practice, and advantages, of brief “aspirations”. How long, and frequent, should they be? Some favorites of the saints
  • How God tests us during prayer. Why only some of us succeed


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