Christine Valters Paintner is the online abbess for Abbey of the Arts, a virtual monastery offering programs and resources on contemplative practice and creative expression. She is the author of thirteen books on monasticism and creativity, including her most recent Earth, Our Original Monastery and her second collection of poems forthcoming this fall, The Wisdom of Wild Grace.
This is part one of a two part episode. To listen to part two, click here.
Earth is the place where we learn our most fundamental prayers, hear the call of the wild arising at dawn to awaken us to a new day, participate in the primal liturgy of praise unfolding all around us, and experience the wisdom and guidance of the seasons. — Christine Valters Paintner, Earth: Our Original Monastery
She leads writing retreats and pilgrimages in Ireland, Scotland, Austria, and Germany and online retreats at her website AbbeyoftheArts.com, living out her commitment as a Benedictine Oblate in Galway, Ireland, with her husband, John.
Christine returns to Encountering Silence (click here to listen to her previous interview with us, from 2018) bringing her warm, wise and inclusive spirituality which encompasses deep contemplation with an inspiring commitment to creative expression.
Everything in creation becomes a catalyst for my deepened self-understanding. The forest asks me to embrace my truth once again. The hummingbird invites me to sip holy nectar, the egret to stretch out my wings, the sparrows to remember my flock. Each pine cone contains an epiphany; each smooth stone offers a revelation. I watch and witness as the sun slowly makes her long arc across the sky and discover my own rising and falling. The moon will sing of quiet miracles, like those which reveal and conceal the world every day right before our eyes. — Christine Valters Paintner, Earth: Our Original Monastery
Some of the Resources and Authors We Mention In This Episode:
- Christine Valters Paintner, Earth, Our Original Monastery: Cultivating Wonder and Gratitude through Intimacy with Nature
- Christine Valters Paintner, The Wisdom of Wild Grace: Poems
- Christine Valters Paintner, The Artist’s Rule: Nurturing Your Creative Soul with Monastic Wisdom;
- Christine Valters Paintner, The Eyes of the Heart: Photography as a Christian Contemplative Practice;
- Christine Valters Paintner, The Wisdom of the Body: A Contemplative Journey to Wholeness for Women;
- Christine Valters Paintner, The Soul’s Slow Ripening: 12 Celtic Practices for Seeking the Sacred.
- Christine Valters Paintner, Dreaming of Stones: Poems
- Christine Valters Paintner, Lectio Divina: The Sacred Art
- The Desert Mothers and Fathers, Early Christian Wisdom Sayings
- The Psalms
- David Abram, The Spell of the Sensuous: Pereption and Language in a More-Than-Human World
- Sr. Corita Kent, Learning by Heart: Teachings to Free the Creative Spirit
- Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation
- David Whyte, River Flow: New and Selected Poems
- Helen Waddell, tr., Beasts and Saints
- Francis and Clare, The Complete Works
- Julian of Norwich, The Showings of Julian of Norwich
Episode 94: Wild Silence and the Cloister of the Earth: A Conversation with Christine Valters Paintner (Part One)
Hosted by: Carl McColman
With: Cassidy Hall, Kevin Johnson
Date Recorded: March 30, 2020
Featured photo credit: Kilmacduagh Monastery photograph by Carl McColman, copyright 2002.