Tuesday, June 3, 2014

This Tremendous Lover

I've been reading a book given to me by my fiancee, a beautiful work of sound teaching and deep spirituality: This Tremendous Lover by Dom Eugene Boylan, OCR. Dom Boylan was an Irish monk of the Trappist order, and in 1946 he published this book, which would be held to be a masterpiece.

I've been working through it slowly, as one savors a flavorful steak or sips a sweet wine, and have found many a thought-provoking, challenging, or uplifting point or passage; my copy is filled with underlining and starred sections and marginal notes. I thought I'd share a few of my favorites with you, to give you a taste so that you might want to order this spiritual delicacy yourselves.
Mercy is the attitude of goodness confronted with misery. (22)
The love of our hearts is something unique, something no one else can give Him. True, He could create other hearts to love Him, but once He has created us and given us free will, the love of our particular heart is something unique and in a way irreplaceable. (70-71)
It must be remembered that although the spiritual life is a life of love, it is not a life of sentiment. On the contrary, love is based on knowledge give by faith and reason. In a word, devotion is founded on dogma. (112) 
In prayer, it is the movements of the heart that matter. Words are good insofar as they help the movements of the heart. But words for the sake of words, or repetition for the mere sake of repetition, should be avoided. There is no need to keep talking all the time. (131) 
If we remember that the most fruitful life of any human being was that lived by our Lady, and that her life was essentially ordinary, obscure, and laborious, we shall, perhaps, find a new value in the ordinary things in the day's round when done for God. (195)
The whole trouble is that--literally--we do not know what is good for us; and what makes the trouble still worse is that we think we do. (200)
Our own notions of perfection are often full of error. We imagine holiness as the perfecting of our own life; whereas, in fact, it is the perfecting of the life of Christ within us. We imagine that the really important part of a life of holiness is the good works we perform and the fruit we produce; whereas the thing that primarily matters is the love, the supernatural love, with which they are performed. (260)
I'm fast approaching the chapter on the married life. My fiancee has read passages from this chapter to me before, which merely whet my appetite. And since we're getting married in 17 days, it seems appropriate!

1 comment:

  1. This may not sound fair, because it’s not

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    The really cool thing is, when you know how to give a man this “secret ingredient”...

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    It’s that moment when he says to himself “Where have you BEEN all my life?”

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    ReplyDelete