Yoga and the Jesus Prayer

A week ago I returned here to Incarnation Monastery in Berkeley, and the next day received the author’s copies of Yoga and the Jesus Prayer (O Books). This is my latest book, but not entirely new. Although totally rewritten, it contains the core material from Yoga and the Jesus Prayer Tradition: An Experiment in Faith, published in 1984 by Paulist Press.

People have been looking for this out-of-print book for years now, and copies have been put up on on eBay and Amazon for ridiculous prices: 70 or 80 dollars. Now for just $22.95 ( or even less, with Amazon’s discount) you can read my comparison of Tantric Yoga and Greek Orthodox mysticism, or better said, my parallel reading of the tenth-century yogis of Kashmir and a Byzantine saint from the same period, to see where their respective experiences may converge.

In this new edition I also share some of my personal experience of yoga practice and meditation as a disciple of the disciples of Paramahansa Yogananda and later as a Christian monk in Big Sur, Italy, and India.

During the retreat I gave the weekend before last, at the Camaldolese hermitage in Big Sur, I drew on this book, focusing on the theme of kundalini awakening as a fire sacrifice. We meditated together, with the help of a simple breathing practice taught in the ancient Vjñana-Bhairava Tantra, and at the center of our meditations was the sacrifice of Jesus, made present in the daily Mass celebrated with the monks.

Cover of the new book (O Books)

About ashramdiary

Thomas Matus, who blogs this Ashram Diary, was born 1940 in Hollywood, California. Academics: A.B. in music from Occidental College (Los Angeles); S.T.L. in ecumenical theology from Athenaeum Anselmianum (Rome, Italy); Ph.D. in comparative mysticism from Fordham University (New York). Initiated into Kriya Yoga (by direct disciples of Paramahansa Yogananda) in 1958. Became a Catholic in 1960 and entered New Camaldoli Hermitage (Big Sur, California) as a novice monk in 1962. Lived for more than 30 years at the Monastery of Camaldoli in Italy. Traveled to India some 20 times; made frequent retreats at Saccidananda Ashram (Shantivanam) in southern India. Was in Brazil, off and on, from 1999 to 2006. Now back in California, he lives at the Hermitage in Big Sur and Incarnation Monastery in Berkeley, California. See:
This entry was posted in Big Sur, yoga and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Yoga and the Jesus Prayer

  1. Have discovered your blog via msn the other day and absolutely like it so much. Keep up the excellent work.

  2. Andrew says:

    Father, I must say that as an Orthodox Christian who has recently developed an interest in Hinduism, I find it absolutely amazing to see that a book has been written on a subject like this one. Your book will certainly be on my “to-read” list!

  3. Guy G Roumain says:

    I am just starting to read the book and I find it fascinating


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s