Douglas E. Christie


Professor of Theological Studies
Department of Theological Studies
Loyola Marymount University
1 LMU Drive, Suite 3700
Los Angeles, CA 90045-2659, USA
Office: University Hall, Suite 3700










Academic Background

Ph.D., Christian Spirituality, Graduate Theological Union, 1988

M.A. Theology, University of California, 1980

B.A. Religious Studies; B.A. Psychology, University of California, Santa Cruz, 1977.


Areas of Research

Dr. Christie is the author of the award winning book, The Word in the Desert, the editor of the journal Spiritus, and teaches in the area of Christian Spirituality.


Selected Publications




2013- The Blue Sapphire of the Mind: Notes for a Contemplative Ecology (Oxford University Press).



1993 - The Word in the Desert: Scripture and the Quest for Holiness in Early Christian Monasticism (Lond, New York: Oxford University Press).


Editorial work

2001- Spiritus: A Journal of Christian Spirituality (Journal of the Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality): Founding editor.

2000 The Christian Spirituality Bulletin: Founding editor.

Articles/Book Chapters

  • “The Eternal Present: Slow Knowledge and the Renewal of Time.” Journal of Buddhist-Christian Studies (forthcoming, Spring, 2013).
  • “Things that used to be Familiar . . . Become Strange”: Certeau and the Possession at Loudun.” Spiritus 12:2 (2012): 190-97.
  • “Practicing Paradise: Contemplative Awareness and Ecological Renewal,” Anglican Theological Review 94:2 (2012): 281-303.
  • “Monasticism,” in Cambridge Companion to Christian Mysticism, eds. Amy Hollywood and Patricia Beckman (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012).
  • “The Luminous Word: Scripture in the Philokalia, in Brock Bingamen and Bradley Nassaif, eds. The Philokalia (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012).
  • “The Blue Sapphire of the Mind: Christian Contemplative Practice and the Healing of the Whole,” Sewanee Theological Review 54:3 (June, 2011).
  • “The Gift of Tears: Loss, Mourning and the Work of Ecological Restoration,” Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology 15:1 (2011).
  • “Spirituality: Contemporary Trends,” Encyclopedia of Religion in America, eds. Charles H. Lippy and Peter W. Williams (Washington D.C.: C.Q. Press, 2010).
  • “The Life of Antony,” in Christian Spirituality: The Classics, ed. Arthur Holder (Oxford: Blackwell, 2009), 13-24.
  • “Place-Making as Contemplative Practice,” Anglican Theological Review 91:3 (Summer, 2009): 347-372.
  • “Evagrius on Sadness,” Cistercian Studies Quarterly 44:4 (2009): 395-409.
  • “Darwin’s Contemplative Vision,” Spiritus 9:1 (Spring, 2009): 89-95.
  • “The Birth of the Word in the Soul,” Weavings (Jan/Feb. 2008).
  • “Vision Becoming Joy: The Desert in History and Imagination,” American Benedictine Review 58:2 (June 2007): 172-181.
  • “Spirituality in an Age of Ecological Loss,” Ascent 31:1 (Fall 2007): 27-43.
  • “Hesychia” Weavings 22 (Spring, 2007)
  • 2007 “The Spirit of Place: The Columbia River Watershed and the Meaning of Community,” in Thomas O’Brien and Scott Paeth, eds. Religious Perspectives on Business Ethics (Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2007: 277-294.
  • 2006 “The Work of Loneliness: Thomas Merton’s Experiments in Solitude,” Anglican Theological Review 88:1 (Winter 2006): 25-46.
  • “St. Antony’s Fire,” Weavings XXI: 2 (March/April 2006): 23-30.
  • “The Weight of the World: The Heaviness of Nature in Spiritual Experience,” in Bruce Lescher and Elizabeth Liebert, eds., Exploring Christian Spirituality (New York: Paulist, 2006): 142-160.2005 “Nature,” In Arthur Holder, ed., The Blackwell Companion to Christian Spirituality (Oxford: Blackwell, 2005): 478-495.
  • “Simplicity, or the Terror of Belief: The Making and Unmaking of the Self in Early Christian Monasticisim,” Cistercian Studies Quarterly 40:4 (2005): 353-364.
  • +“Desert Spirituality,” in the Westminster Dictionary of Christian Spirituality, Philip Sheldrake, ed. (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox, 2005).
  • 2003 “The Wild and the Sacred,” Anglican Theological Review 85:3 (Summer, 2003): 493-510.
  • "The Spirit of Place: The Columbia River Watershed Letter and the Meaning of Community,” Horizons 30: 1 (Spring, 2003): 7-24.
  • 2002 “The Transforming Power of the Word: Asceticism and Hermeneutics in Early Christian Monasticism.” In The World of Religions: Essays on Historical and Contemporary Issues. Ed. By Garry W. Trompf and Gildas Hamel (Delhi: ISPCK, 2002), 43-68.
  • “Wisdom: The Hidden Face of God.” Weavings 17:4 (July/August 2002): 6-20.
  • 2001 “Hearing, Reading, Praying: Orality, Literacy and the Shape of Early Monastic Spirituality,” Anglican Theological Review 83:2 (Spring, 2001): 5-25.
  • "Memory and Hope,” Portland Magazine 20:1 (Spring 2001): 30-34.
  • 2000 “Words Beneath the Water: Logos, Cosmos and the Spirit of Place,“ in Christianity and Ecology. Edited by Dieter T. Hessel and Rosemary Radford Ruether. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2000): 317-336.
  • “Christ in Ten Thousand Places: Cultivating the Art of Attention,” Cistercian Studies Quarterly35: 1 (January2000): 113-123.
  • “The Immense Call of the Particular: Czeslaw Milosz on Nature, History and Hope.” Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment 7:1 (Winter 2000): 115-129.
  • “Into the Empty Places,” Weavings 15:1 (Jan/Feb 2000): 19-27.
  • 1999 "The Sense of Place," The Way 39:1 (January, 1999): 59-72.
  • “Into the Body of Another: Eros, Embodiment and Intimacy with the Natural World,” Anglican Theological Review 81:1 (Winter, 1999): 13-37.
  • "The Place of the Heart: Geography and Spirituality in The Life of Antony," in Purity of Heart in Early Ascetical Literature. Edited by Harriet A. Luckman and Linda Kulzer (Collegeville: Liturgical Press, 1999):45-66.
  • “Living on the Edge of Eternity,” in The Best Spiritual Writing 1999. Edited by Philip Zaleski (San Francisco: Harper, 1999): 38-49.
  • 1998 "The Call of the Desert: Purity of Heart and Power in Early Christian Monasticism," Pro Ecclesia 7: 2 (Spring, 1998): 216-234.
  • "Living on the Edge of Eternity," Weavings 13: 4 (July/August 1998): 15-24
  • "Desert Spirituality," Year-long series in Liguorian Magazine.
  • 1997 "Oral Culture and Biblical Interpretation in Early Christian Monasticism," Studia Patristica XXX (Leuven: Peeters Press, 1997): 144- 150.
  • "Living Between Two Worlds: Home, Journey and The Quest for Sacred Place," Anglican Theological Review 79: 3 (Summer, 1997): 413-432.
  • "Biblical Interpretation and Asceticism in Early Greek Christianity" in Paul M. Blowers, ed. The Bible and the World of Greek Christianity (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1997): 415-440.
  • "Into the Labyrinth: Walking the Way of Wisdom," Weavings XII: 4 (July/August, 1997): 19-28.
  • "The Word in the Desert: The Biblical Spirituality of Early Christian Monasticism," American Baptist Quarterly XVI: 1 (March, 1997): 69-80.
  • 1996 "Nature, Spirit and Imagination in the Poetry of Mary Oliver," Cross Currents 46: 1 (Spring, 1996): 77-87.
  • "Learning to See: Epiphany in the Ordinary," Weavings 11: 6 (Nov/Dec. 1996): 6-16.
  • "Interlude: The Literature of Nature and the Quest for the Sacred," in The Sacred Place, ed. by W. Scott Olsen and Scott Cairns (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1996): 165-177.
  • "Fire and Silence," Orion Magazine 15: 4 (Autumn 1996): 65-67.
  • 1995 "We Already Have All That We Seek: Prayer as Radical Simplicity,"
  • Weavings 10: 3 (May/June 1995): 14-23.
  • 1994 "Mapping the Sacred Landscape: Spirituality and the Contemporary Literature of Nature," Horizons 21: 1 (Spring, 1994): 22-47.
  • "The Literature of Nature and the Quest for the Sacred," The Way Supplement 81 (1994): 4-14.
  • 1993 "A Feeling for the Natural World: Spirituality and the Appeal to the Heart in Contemporary Nature Writing," Continuum 2: 2-3 (Spring, 1993).
  • "The Grace of Unknowing," Weavings 8: 5 (September/October, 1993).
  • "Scripture, Self-Knowledge and Contemplation in Cassian's
  • Conferences," Studia Patristica 25 (Leuven: Peeters Press, 1993).
  • 1989 "Practice Makes Perfect: Interpretation of Scripture in the Apophthegmata Patrum," Studia Patristica 20 (Leuven: Peeters Press, 1989): 213-18.
  • "Rediscovering Love's World: Thomas Merton's Love Poems and the Language of Ecstasy," Cross Currents 39: 1 (Spring, 1989): 64-82.


Personal Webpage


Oxford Blog (The Blue Sapphire)

Spiritus: A Journal of Christian Spirituality

The Society for the Study of Christian Spirituality (SSCS)