Volume 6 / Issue 1 SPRING 2020

S p i r i t ua l i t y S t u d i e s 6 - 1 S p r i n g 2 0 2 0 5 Larry Culliford 1 Introduction – A Perfect Reason for Congregating The Spirituality Institute for Research and Education (SpIRE) has been based at Milltown Park in Dublin since being founded in 2015. The Institute recently acquired a new library containing many of the works once part of the extensive Milltown Institute library. In addition to important historical works in the field, it houses specialist books for applied spir - ituality studies, also the latest relevant articles and journals. At the invitation of SpIRE’s Director, Michael O’Sullivan, and Chair, Bernadette Flanagan, the library was launched on 5th March 2020 by the author, who gave the following lecture to an invited audience of about eighty religious and lay people [2]. It is a great honour to be here, and we have a perfect reason for congregating, to proudly and joyfully inaugurate a library of spirituality, especially today as it is World Book Day. For the great privilege and by way of thanks, I will be donating a few of my own books to the library. I would also like to present an authenticated first edition copy of Thomas Mer - ton’sConjectures of a Guilty Bystander (Merton 1966) signed by Merton himself, which I acquired some years ago from the Thomas Merton Center in Louisville, Kentucky. About the author Dr Larry Culliford MA, MB, BChir, MRCPsych , is an independent scholar trained in medicine at St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, and Guy’s Hospital, London. After working as a psychiatrist in New Zealand, Aus - tralia and the British National Health Service, he retired in 2007 to concentrate on writing, lecturing and giving workshops. His acclaimed books include The Little Book of Happiness (Rider 1999) andHappiness: The 30 Day Guide (Rider 2001) both under the penname Patrick Whiteside; also Love, Healing & Happi - ness (O Books 2007), The Psychology of Spirituality: An Introduction (JKP 2011), Much Ado about Something: a Vision of Christian Maturity (SPCK 2015) and The Big Book of Wisdom (Hero Press 2020). Larry has published several papers onspirituality and psychiatry, taking a spiritual history, teaching spirituality and health care to third-year medical students, and related topics. He has also written a long-running blog for Psychology Today under the by-line Spiritual Wisdom for Secular Times . In 1999, Larry was a co-founder of the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Spirituality and Psychiatry special interest group. He is a former Chair of the Thomas Merton Society of Great Britain & Ireland, and a longstanding member of both the British Association for the Study of Spirituality and the Scientific and Medical Network. Larry lives happily with his wife Sarah in West Sussex, UK. He runs a website www.ldc52.co.uk and is available at larry@ldc52. co.uk.