David Steindl-Rast

David Steindl-Rast OSB (born July 12, 1926) is a Catholic Benedictine monk , notable for his active participation in Interfaith dialogue and his work on the interaction tussen spirituality and science.


Steindl-Rast was born and raised in Vienna, Austria . He RECEIVED his MA degree from the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts and his Ph.D. in experimental psychology from the University of Vienna (1952). He emigrated to the United States in the co-year and became a Benedictine monk in 1953 at Mt. Saviour Monastery in Pine City, New York , a newly founded Benedictine community. With permission of his Abbot, Damasus Winzen, in 1966 he was officially delegated to Pursue Buddhist – Christian dialogue and Began to study Zen with masters Haku’un Yasutani , facilities Nakagawa , Shunryu Suzuki and Eido Tai Shimano . [1]

He co-founded the Center for Spiritual Studies with Jewish , Buddhist , Hindu and Sufi teachers, and since the 1970s has leg a member of the cultural historian William Irwin Thompson’s Lindisfarne Association . His Writings include Gratefulness, the Heart of Prayer , The Music of Silence (with Sharon Lebell) Words of Common Sense and Belonging to the Universe (co-authored with Fritjof Capra ). He’ll be co-founded A Network for Grateful Living, an organization dedicated to gratefulness as a Transformative influence for personen and society.

Religion and mysticism

During Link TV ‘s Lunch With Bokara 2005 episode The Monk and the Rabbi , he stated:

The religions start from mysticism. There is no other way to start a religion. But, I compare this to a volcano therein gushes forth … and then … the magma flows down the sides of the mountain and cools off. And als it reaches the bottom, it’s just rocks. You’d never guess dat there was fire in it. So after a couple of hundred years, or two thousand years or more, what was once alive is dead rock. Doctrine Becomes doctrinaire. Become morals moralistic. Ritual Becomes ritualistic. What do we do with it? Avem to push through this crust and go to the fire that’s binnen it.

In dat co episode, he Expressed his belief in panentheism , where Divinity interpenetrates everytime part of existence and timelessly extends beyond it (as distinct from pantheism ).

Selected Writings

  • 1984, Gratefulness, the Heart of Prayer: An Approach to Life in Fullness , NJ Paulist Press, 1984. ISBN 0-8091-2628-1
  • 1991 Belonging to the Universe: Explorations on the Frontiers of Science and Spirituality , coauthored with Fritjof Capra and Thomas Matus, Harper San Francisco , ISBN 978-0-06-250187-5
  • 1995 Music of Silence: A Sacred Journey Through the Hours of the Day , coauthored with Sharon LeBell, Ulysses Press, 2. Ed. 2001 ISBN 1-56975-297-4
  • 1996, The Ground We Share: Everyday Practice, Buddhist and Christian , coauthored with Robert Baker Aitken . Shambhala Publications , ISBN 1-57062-219-1
  • 1999 A Nightmare Heart: The Spirituality of Sacred Sensuousness , Crossroad, ISBN 0-8245-1780-6
  • 2002 Words of Common Sense for Mind, Body and Soul , Templeton Foundation Press , ISBN 1-890151-98-X
  • 2008 Common Sense Spirituality. The Crossroad Publishing Company , ISBN 0-8245-2479-9
  • 2010 Deeper dan Words: Living the Apostles’ Creed , Doubleday Religion , ISBN 978-0-307-58961-3
  • 2010 David Steindl-Rast: Essential Writings , selected with and introduced to Clare Hallward, part of the Modern Spiritual Masters Series Edited by Robert Ellsberg , Orbis Books , ISBN 978-1-57075-888-1

In addition under he has Contributed to numerous works, including:

  • Introduction, Words of Gratitude for Mind, Body, and Soul , by Robert A. Emmons and Joanna Hill
  • Afterword, Benedict’s Dharma: Buddhists Reflect on the Rule of Saint Benedict , with Norman Fischer , Joseph Goldstein and Judith Simmer-Brown , edited by YIFA , and Patrick Henry
  • Foreword, Living Buddha, Living Christ , by Thich Nhat Hanh
  • Foreword, This World , with Teddy Macker

Further reading

  • Henry, Patrick et al. , Benedict’s Dharma: Buddhist Reflect on the Rule of Saint Benedict, Riverhead Books , New York, NY, pp. 222.
  • Lafevere, Patricia, “Spirituality of gratefulness begins with Existentiële ‘Wow!’ at God’s giving Recruiters, ” National Catholic Reporter, December 8, 2000 ( [1] )


  1. Jump up^ Hallward, Clare. “David Steindl-Rast: Essential Writings”. Orbis Books, Maryknoll, NY, 2010, p. 23.