From merchant banker to monk

Laurence Freeman OSB, Spiritual Teacher of the World Community of Christian Meditation is in Auckland April 17th to 21st.

From merchant banker to monk and a life of meditation – that was the path taken by Laurence Freeman after he graduated from Oxford with a Master’s degree in English Literature.

He tried his hand at journalism, at working at the United Nations and at merchant banking.

But, as one who had been educated by the Benedictines, he found his true calling as a Benedictine monk.

Along the way he embraced meditation and went on to become the founder and spiritual teacher of the London-based World Community for Christian Meditation (WCCM).

He is also founder and director of the John Main Centre for Christian Meditation and Inter-religious Dialogue at Georgetown University.

Internationally, Laurence Freeman is regarded as one of the leaders in the burgeoning contemplative interfaith dialogue movement. A good friend of the Dalai Lama, these two spiritual leaders have jointly led The Way of Peace dialogue; in Bodh Gaya, India in December, 1998, Florence, Italy in May, 1999 and Belfast, Northern Ireland in October, 2000.

Writing in Interreligious Dialogue Laurence Freeman says:

“If religions – with all their rich diversity and contradictions and all their cultural roots – can listen to each other, to learn from their differences and to share what they have in common, then there is ground for hope that political, military and economic power-holders in our different nations, states and trading blocks will learn to do the same. Indeed, if religions cannot do this, what hope is there that politicians, multinationals and soldiers will ever do it? The stakes for dialogue are much higher than ever before in history.”

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