There are many beautiful passages for meditation curated by Eknath Easwaran from the Christian tradition, including some that are attributed to Thomas à Kempis from The Imitation of Christ. This classic spiritual text can be a challenge for modern readers with its 15th century terminology, so in this hour-long introductory talk Easwaran explains its appeal. As he writes elsewhere:
“Much of The Imitation of Christ is no more dazzling than a manual for woodworkers. But then, if you really want to know about carpentry, you don’t want a manual that will dazzle; you want one that will tell you how to make a miter joint, how to use a skill saw, and what the best finish is for a tabletop. The Imitation of Christ is just that kind of book – an entirely practical manual for sincere spiritual aspirants.”
Between 1970 and 1972 Easwaran gave regular talks on The Imitation of Christ, and this is the first in the series. He places both the text and the author in context, and shows how we can apply its teachings in our spiritual practice today. Using examples from many of the world’s religions, Easwaran also highlights the universal nature of spiritual truth.