How to read: lectio divina in an English Benedictine monastery

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10 Citations (Scopus)


This paper provides an ethnographic account of reading in a contemporary English Benedictine monastery. It focuses on lectio divina, a particular tradition which has been described as a 'slow, contemplative praying of scripture'. The use of this method is contextualised historically and compared with other approaches to scripture reading. This paper argues that lectio divina aims to transform the relationship between the reader and text by changing the method through which we approach the written word. Learning how to read is related to the ongoing process of learning how to listen, and it is argued that this relational approach to reading emerges from the social life of the monastery. 2011 04 14.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395-411
Number of pages17
JournalCulture and Religion
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2010


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