Over time our ideas about God and religion tend to match the stage of our own maturity and the level of our own consciousness. In addition to our different ideas of God, there are also those who profess some form of monotheistic religion but worship other gods: the power of the economy, military strength, fame. Perhaps they even use––or misuse––the name of God or credit God with whatever is gained.
Thus, the challenge for our times is this: how do we think of God as Jesus introduces God to us? While exploring Scripture, the thoughts of theologians, Benedictine monasticism, Jewish and Islamic traditions, along with his own personal reflections, Cyprian Consiglio, OSB Cam, shows us what it means to be church, to be a follower of Jesus, and to be like God: to imitate the self-emptying of God and Christ. We are called to show the world God as Jesus reveals God to be: merciful, compassionate, healer to all.
Cyprian Consiglio, OSB Cam, is a monk of New Camaldoli Hermitage in Big Sur, California, where he currently serves as prior of the community. An internationally known performer, recording artist, and composer, he has numerous collections of original sacred, world, and liturgical music to his credit. A student of the world's spiritual traditions, Consiglio has offered retreats and conferences around the world and authored articles for several books and periodicals. He is the author of Prayer in the Cave of the Heart: The Universal Call to Contemplation and Spirit, Soul, Body: Toward an Integral Christian Spirituality, both published by Liturgical Press.
"This book is the monk’s lectio of a lifetime. As prior he knows of what he reports: we imitate Christ Jesus by washing feet. In return we know the God who gives us birth."
Meg Funk, OSB, Our Lady of Grace Monastery, Beech Grove, Indiana
"The God Who Gave You Birth offers a timely, accessible, and delightful reflection on the theology of Kenosis–the self-emptying of God in the Incarnation, which the Church is called to emulate like yeast that 'acts by disappearing' and salt that 'acts by dissolving.' It is a gifted teacher who can explore complex theological concepts in refreshing and accessible ways, and Fr. Cyprian has done just that. His book gently but unapologetically explores the Christian mystical tradition on its own terms, not in isolation from other contemplative traditions, but in a way that celebrates Christianity’s distinctive contributions. His creative use of Scripture, hymnody, psychology, and Christian symbolism are gently woven together to create a sustained exploration on the meaning of Kenosis for the modern contemplative."
Fr. Vincent Pizzuto, PhD., University of San Francisco, Author of Contemplating Christ: The Gospels and the Interior Life
"After decades in a contemplative hermitage, Cyprian Consiglio has come to know God as intimate, infinite love, available to anyone willing to take Christ's path of self-emptying. At a time when too many Christians cling to the image of God as a thunderbolt-flinging Zeus or devote themselves to lesser gods entirely—money, military might, political power—Consiglio offers a joyful, compelling vision of what is possible when human beings encounter divine reality. The God Who Gave You Birth is a marvelous and potentially life-changing book."
Paula Huston, author of One Ordinary Sunday: A Meditation on the Mystery of the Mass
"No one has taught me more about faith, calm and clarity in the service of humanity than my old friend Cyprian Consiglio. What a grace it is to have his open-hearted wisdom and his unswayable spirit in the world, teaching us how to live for something larger than self and deeper than dogma."
Pico Iyer, author of The Art of Stillness
"Many, just like Cyprian Consiglio, are coming to recognize the absolute centrality of Christianity being a religion of letting go and not just holding on! This changes the goal, the practice, the entire emphasis in the Christian journey, making it look much more like the Jesus journey."
Richard Rohr, OFM, Center for Action and Contemplation, Albuquerque, New Mexico