Hello and welcome to The Inward Turn! My name is Katharine Rose and I’m an avid reader, writer, and seeker of wisdom and truth.
I was a Princeton Theological Seminary candidate on her way to complete a Master of Divinity degree before God did what He often tends to do: interrupt our life plans.
It was during a 6-day silent retreat a month before I was scheduled to begin classes that I strongly felt God calling me away from seminary and into the vast unknown.
The Inward Turn has grown out of my attempt to find solid ground – really, to find God – during a time of great uncertainty in my life.
Part of that uncertainty stemmed from feeling a sense of lost identity. As a Type A, achievement driven individual, my value and worth has always been tied to my credentials.
But, what I’ve (slowly!) been learning is that those things don’t define me; they’re not my identity and they’re not who I am. In fact, the more I’ve tried to root my identity in those things, the more unfulfilling my life has become.
St. Augustine, one of the early church fathers from the 4-5thcentury, wrote in his autobiography, Confessions:
“Why are [men] not happy? Because they are so fully preoccupied with other things which do more to make them miserable than those which would make them happy…[y]et there is a little light in men. Let them walk – let them walk in it, lest the darkness overtake them.”
Having immersed myself in the writings of ancient and contemporary Christian theologians, monks, preachers, gurus, etc., I’ve come to believe that turning inward – where this “little light” dwells – holds the key to unlocking the very things we tirelessly pursue in our outward striving.
Indeed, the joy and love, peace and fulfillment that we long to accompany us on life’s journey already exist, dwelling within and awaiting our discovery. “For behold,” the Gospel of Luke says, “the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21).
The Inward Turn is dedicated to distilling insights and wisdom from some of the world’s greatest spiritual thinkers to help guide us on our life journey, facilitating a richer understanding of God, and of ourselves.
From Trappist monk Thomas Merton, who encourages us to claim responsibility for our own lives; to Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius, who sheds light on how to control the mind; to Father Gregory Boyle, who provides insight into what compassion really is, a common theme begins to emerge: we must cease looking to the outside for answers, for fulfillment, for joy, and instead look within.
As someone who is only just beginning this inward turn, it is my hope that you’ll join me, and that the resources shared within might guide you to walk and to flourish in your own little light.
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Thank you Katharine. I am so pleased to have found your site: I too have been struggling with questions of role and identity, have been trying to adopt a stoical approach to my problems whilst trying to be compassionate towards the people who have given me so much grief. This concerns the Anglican Church and my belief that I should study to be a Reader. Other people, ordained women, had other ideas and blocked my studies. It’s hard to be faced with lies and hypocrisy from people you thought were worthy of respect. Their behaviour beggars belief. Anyway, I am on another path now, taking baby steps in my new reality and tentatively feeling good about it. Hence, I am pleased to find your site. I’m sure I am going to learn a lot….I certainly need to! May God bless you!
Brenda, thank you so much for your comment. I am so sorry to hear of your pain and grief..life can certainly be challenging, but I’ve found that it also has a way of teaching us the things we need to learn when we need to learn them. I wish you all the peace and joy on your new path. God bless you!
This Site of yours is so wonderful. I found it in error but was so glad I did. I’m a firm believer in silence,
Solitude and serenity. To just sit in His presence.
Meditate, contemplate or just sit in nothingness
and wait………. . Sometimes He speaks or gives you a thought. If he does it’s heavenly bliss. But most
Times it doesn’t happen which is ok too.
Keep up this site. Please. It’s good Spiritual Medicine.
Thank you for commenting, Bob. I’m so glad that you not only found the site, but found it beneficial. I appreciate the encouragement! God bless you.