Lyle Bogin wrote:
"With prayer, look to the Orient - after all, they have been at it longer."
Hmmmm...not so sure about that.
I'm not sure what you're not sure about. This was mostly a quote from Thomas Merton, a Trappist monk of the 20th century who was instrumental in introducing Oriental spiritual traditions through the Catholic Church to mainstream America in the 50'-60's. In fact, he died tragically by electrocution in a hotel in China I believe (or Japan) while on a visit and exchange. Sorry I don't have the source handy - you can question my memory, but I don't see any reason to contradict what Merton said. Many of the practices of Christianity are very similar and even have Oriental roots. Don't forget that for most of history most of the Christian Church was Oriental. Also that as an emergant tradition out of Judaism it shares those traditions. There is rather conclusive evidence that the cultural exchanges between India and the Middle East included religion through the gymnosophists and other aescetics. One Indian ritual is amazingly similar to the observance of Passover.