Answering the Contemplative Call

I am pleased to announce that my forthcoming book, Answering the Contemplative Call: First Steps on the Mystical Path, has been entered into the Amazon.com database. The book will not be released until January 2013, but you can pre-order your copy by clicking here. Eventually the book will also be available on Kindle and Nook, but if you like a good old fashioned paper-and-ink book, you can pre-order this title now.

Here’s a bit of information about the book:

The mystical path is not some sort of static experience for the select few, says Carl McColman, rather, it is a living tradition, a rich and many-layered dimension of spirituality that is in large measure a quest to find the mysteries at the heart of the universe, paradoxically nestled within the heart of your own soul.

McColman first introduced readers to Christianity’s lost mystical roots in his popular book, The Big Book of Christian Mysticism. Now McColman is back with Answering the Contemplative Call, to show readers how to apply the riches of the mystical tradition to daily living.

This book is organized in three sections:

  • “Recognizing the Call,” Explores how each one of us is called to the mystical life, and what that might look like.
  • “Preparing for the Journey,” shows what we need to do in response to the contemplative call.
  • “Embarking on the Adventure” considers what those first steps on the path might look like.

Along the way McColman quotes from the great mystics of the Christian tradition who have also traveled this path, including Teresa of Avila, Thomas Merton, Evelyn Underhill and more.

In Answering the Contemplative Call, McColman offers a practice that will help readers come to a place meaning and purpose in their lives.


There’s been an interesting conversation on my Facebook page about the cover. Most folks seem to love it, but a few feel a bit uncomfortable with the fact that the image is looking down the stairwell, rather than up. I can understand such a sense of cognitive dissonance — after all, isn’t mysticism all about “ascent”? But even more than ascent, mysticism is about paradox, and I see paradox all over this picture: moving down, but toward the light.

What do you think?