Spiritual identity is the quest to know who we are, to find meaning in life and to overcome that sense of "is that all there is?"
At the heart of this quest are found Thomas Meron's illuminating insights leading from an awareness of the false and illusory self as the way to a realization of the true self.
For twenty-five years, Merton's Palace of Nowhere has been the standard for exploring, reflecting on, and understanding this rich vein of Merton's thought.
What does it mean to be made 'in the image and likeness of God'? This is the first and defining characteristic of our humanity celebrated in the opening pages of the Bible. Its subsequent record is of the struggle between good and evil in human life, a tension that we face daily within ourselves and in the relationships of our lives.
Western Christian tradition has often given the impression, and sometimes explicitly taught that this tension is primarily between the soul and the body. The result has been a denigration of the human body and distrust of our deepest physical desires. We no longer recognise within ourselves the characteristics of the divine image. Yet written into the vey fabric of our being in the mystery, wisdom, strength, beauty, creativity, eternity and presence of God.
This profound and challenging book clears away centuries of misunderstanding, confusion and shame that have damaged our self-perception. Drawing on both Jewish and Celtic Christian sources of spirituality, Philip Newell leads us to discover the sacredness of our souls and our bodies. Our present day assumptions about love, beauty, sexuality and worth are transformed by this truly ground-breaking book.
Downward Mobility and the Spiritual Life by Henri Nouwen
In these short reflections Herne Nouwen explores the theme of downward mobility as the way of Christ, and the things that tempt us away from it, namely, the lure of success, of power, of being needed and important. Originally serialized in the magazine Sojourners, Nouwen wrote the articles during his years as a professor at Yale Divinity School. There he enjoyed academic success and found fame as a spiritual writer, but was struggling to find his true vocation. Here he seeks to explain for himself and his readers how choosing the downwardly mobile path can, conversely, be the means of growth and new life in Christ.
This is an illustrated book by Matthew Linn, Sheila Fabricant Linn and Dennis Linn. They describe it as follows: 'When we are hurt, we are tempted to either act as a passive doormat or to strike back and escalate the cycle of violence. We can avoid both of these temptations and find creative responses to hurts by moving through the five stages of forgiveness. In so doing, we discover the two hands of nonviolence: one hand that stops the person who hurts us and the other that reaches out, calms that person and offers new life. This book has healing processes so simple that children can use them."