Thomas A. Kempis Directory Index

Thomas A. Kempis

The Imitation of Christ


Thomas, Kempis, 1380-1471

Table of Contents

Title Page


Book ONE. Thoughts Helpful in the Life of the Soul

Chapter 1. Imitating Christ and Despising All Vanities on Earth

Chapter 2. Having a Humble Opinion of Self

Chapter 3. The Doctrine of Truth

Chapter 4. Prudence in Action

Chapter 5. Reading the Holy Scripture

Chapter 6. Unbridled Affections

Chapter 7. Avoiding False Hope and Pride

Chapter 8. Shunning Over-Familiarity

Chapter 9. Obedience and Subjection

Chapter 10. Avoiding Idle Talk

Chapter 11. Acquiring Peace and Zeal for Perfection

Chapter 12. The Value of Adversity

Chapter 13. Resisting Temptation

Chapter 14. Avoiding Rash Judgment

Chapter 15. Works Done in Charity

Chapter 16. Bearing with the Faults of Others

Chapter 17. Monastic Life

Chapter 18. The Example Set Us by the Holy Fathers

Chapter 19. The Practices of a Good Religious

Chapter 20. The Love of Solitude and Silence

Chapter 21. Sorrow of Heart

Chapter 22. Thoughts on the Misery of Man

Chapter 23. Thoughts on Death

Chapter 24. Judgment and the Punishment of Sin

Chapter 25. Zeal in Amending our Lives

Book TWO. The Interior Life

Chapter 1. Meditation

Chapter 2. Humility

Chapter 3. Goodness and Peace in Man

Chapter 4. Purity of Mind and Unity of Purpose

Chapter 5. Ourselves

Chapter 6. The Joy of a Good Conscience

Chapter 7. Loving Jesus Above All Things

Chapter 8. The Intimate Friendship of Jesus

Chapter 9. Wanting No Share in Comfort

Chapter 10. Appreciating God's Grace

Chapter 11. Few Love the Cross of Jesus

Chapter 12. The Royal Road of the Holy Cross

Book THREE. Internal Consolation

Chapter 1. The Inward Conversation of Christ with the Faithful Soul

Chapter 2. Truth Speaks Inwardly Without the Sound of Words

Chapter 3. Listen Humbly to the Words of God. Many Do Not Heed Them

Chapter 4. We Must Walk Before God in Humility and Truth

Chapter 5. The Wonderful Effect of Divine Love

Chapter 6. The Proving of a True Lover

Chapter 7. Grace Must Be Hidden Under the Mantle of Humility

Chapter 8. Self-Abasement in the Sight of God

Chapter 9. All Things should be Referred to God as their Last End

Chapter 10. To Despise the World and Serve God is Sweet

Chapter 11. The Longings of our Hearts Must be Examined and Moderated

Chapter 12. Acquiring Patience in the Fight Against Concupiscence

Chapter 13. The Obedience of One Humbly Subject to the Example of Jesus Christ

Chapter 14. Consider the Hidden Judgments of God Lest You Become Proud of Your Own Good Deeds

Chapter 15. How One Should Feel and Speak on Every Desirable Thing

Chapter 16. True Comfort Is to Be Sought in God Alone

Chapter 17. All Our Care is to Be Placed in God

Chapter 18. Temporal Sufferings Should Be Borne Patiently, After the Example of Christ

Chapter 19. True Patience in Suffering

Chapter 20. Confessing Our Weakness in the Miseries of Life

Chapter 21. Above All Goods and All Gifts We Must Rest in God

Chapter 22. Remember the Innumerable Gifts of God

Chapter 23. Four Things Which Bring Great Peace

Chapter 24. Avoiding Curious Inquiry About the Lives of Others

Chapter 25. The Basis of Firm Peace of Heart and True Progress

Chapter 26. The Excellence of a Free Mind, Gained Through Prayer Rather Than By Study

Chapter 27. Self-Love is the Greatest Hindrance to the Highest Good

Chapter 28. Strength Against Slander

Chapter 29. How We Must Call Upon and Bless the Lord When Trouble Presses

Chapter 30. The Quest of Divine Help and Confidence in Regaining Grace

Chapter 31. To Find the Creator, Forsake All Creatures

Chapter 32. Self-Denial and the Renunciation of Evil Appetites

Chapter 33. Restlessness of Soul—Directing Our Final Intention Toward God

Chapter 34. God is Sweet Above All Things and in All Things to Those Who Love Him

Chapter 35. There is No Security from Temptation in This Life

Chapter 36. The Vain Judgments of Men

Chapter 37. Pure and Entire Resignation of Self to Obtain Freedom of Heart

Chapter 38. The Right Ordering of External Affairs; Recourse to God in Dangers

Chapter 39. A Man Should Not Be Unduly Solicitous About His Affairs

Chapter 40. Man Has No Good in Himself and Can Glory in Nothing

Chapter 41. Contempt for All Earthly Honor

Chapter 42. Peace is Not to Be Placed in Men

Chapter 43. Beware Vain and Worldly Knowledge

Chapter 44. Do Not Be Concerned About Outward Things

Chapter 45. All Men Are Not to Be Believed, for It Is Easy to Err in Speech

Chapter 46. Trust in God Against Slander

Chapter 47. Every Trial Must Be Borne for the Sake of Eternal Life

Chapter 48. The Day of Eternity and the Distresses of This Life

Chapter 49. The Desire of Eternal Life; the Great Rewards Promised to Those Who Struggle

Chapter 50. How a Desolate Person Ought to Commit Himself Into the Hands of God

Chapter 51. When We Cannot Attain to the Highest, We Must Practice the Humble Works

Chapter 52. A Man Ought Not to Consider Himself Worthy of Consolation, But Rather Deserving of Chastisement

Chapter 53. God's Grace Is Not Given to the Earthly Minded

Chapter 54. The Different Motions of Nature and Grace

Chapter 55. The Corruption of Nature and the Efficacy of Divine Grace

Chapter 56. We Ought to Deny Ourselves and Imitate Christ Through Bearing the Cross

Chapter 57. A Man Should Not Be Too Downcast When He Falls Into Defects

Chapter 58. High Matters and the Hidden Judgments of God Are Not to Be Scrutinized

Chapter 59. All Hope and Trust Are to Be Fixed In God Alone

Book FOUR. An Invitation to Holy Communion

Chapter 1. The Great Reverence With Which We Should Receive Christ

Chapter 2. God's Great Goodness and Love is Shown to Man in This Sacrament

Chapter 3. It Is Profitable to Receive Communion Often

Chapter 4. Many Blessings Are Given Those Who Receive Communion Worthily

Chapter 5. The Dignity of the Sacrament and of the Priesthood

Chapter 6. An Inquiry on the Proper Thing to Do Before Communion

Chapter 7. The Examination of Conscience and the Resolution to Amend

Chapter 8. The Offering of Christ on the Cross; Our Offering

Chapter 9. We Should Offer Ourselves and All That We Have to God, Praying for All

Chapter 10. Do Not Lightly Forego Holy Communion

Chapter 11. The Body of Christ and Sacred Scripture Are Most Necessary to a Faithful Soul

Chapter 12. The communicant Should Prepare Himself for Christ with Great Care

Chapter 13. With All Her Heart the Devout Soul Should Desire Union with Christ in the Sacrament

Chapter 14. The Ardent Longing of Devout Men for the Body of Christ

Chapter 15. The Grace of Devotion is Acquired Through Humility and Self-Denial

Chapter 16. We Should Show Our Needs to Christ and Ask His Grace

Chapter 17. The Burning Love and Strong Desire to Receive Christ

Chapter 18. Man Should Not Scrutinize This Sacrament in Curiosity, But Humbly Imitate Christ and Submit Reason to Holy Faith


Index of Subjects

Index of Names

List of Scripture References