Common errors to avoid when reading a spiritual book


Not every aspect of a saint’s life needs to be imitated, and that’s okay.

When reading a good spiritual book, especially one that details the life and practices of a saint, sometimes we may think that everything should be imitated. This can often leave us overwhelmed, thinking that this is the only path to sanctity.

Venerable Augustine Baker, a holy Benedictine monk of the 17th century, gave detailed suggestions on what to avoid when engaging in spiritual reading. These suggestions can help us look at spiritual books or articles from a different perspective, recognizing that each person is on a unique path to God and what works for another person doesn’t necessarily mean it will work for us.

Here are several of Baker’s suggestions as found in his book, Holy Wisdom.

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