Fill These Hearts: God, Sex, and the Universal Longing

Fill These Hearts: God, Sex, and the Universal Longing

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by Christopher West
     
 

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The bestselling author, speaker, and teacher of John Paul II's Theology of the Body explores the yearning we all have for God and each other.

Fill These Hearts is a book about desire.  Not trivial wants or superficial cravings, but the most vital powers of body and soul, sexuality and spirituality, that haunt us and compel us on our

Overview

The bestselling author, speaker, and teacher of John Paul II's Theology of the Body explores the yearning we all have for God and each other.

Fill These Hearts is a book about desire.  Not trivial wants or superficial cravings, but the most vital powers of body and soul, sexuality and spirituality, that haunt us and compel us on our search for something.  Weaving life-altering lessons together from classical and contemporary art, pop music, movies, and the Christian mystical tradition, popular theologian Christopher West explores the ancient but largely forgotten idea that the restless, erotic yearnings we feel in both our bodies and our spirits reveal the cry of our hearts for God.  Along the way, West blows the lid off the idea of Christianity as a repressive, anti-sex religion by demonstrating that Christ came to stretch and inflame our desire for love and union to the point of infinity.


From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Some skeptics may believe that the only thing God has to say about sex is “Don’t do it!” West, a popular author (At the Heart of the Gospel), speaker, and faculty member at the Theology of the Body Institute, attempts to dispel this perception and introduce a more nuanced and holistic approach to Catholic teaching about sexuality. With a solid foundation in natural law theory and Pope John Paul II’s “theology of the body,” the author attempts to navigate a middle way between a discouraging fear of human sexuality and an overindulgence in carnal desires, which he believes to be all too common in contemporary culture. West encourages all people to be mystics and attempt to encounter the glorious mystery of God in daily life. This will enable everyone to discern what is true, beautiful, and good so that people of faith do not waste time and energy pursuing desires that lead to dead ends. The traditional Catholic worldview that the author presents, unfortunately, will not resonate with everyone. The most valuable take-home message for all is that we should consider where our desires might lead us before acting upon them. (Jan. 8)
From the Publisher
"Well done! Christopher West has done a masterful job of confronting the inherent dualism lurking in much of modern Western theology, exposing the deepest longings of the human soul as an authentic yearning for union with God.”  
–Wm. Paul Young, author of The Shack and Cross Roads
 
"Fill These Hearts is a cultural balm. Christopher West writes with great love, of great love, drawing readers into His Sacred Heart."
–Kathryn Jean Lopez, nationally syndicated columnist and editor-at-large, National Review
 
"Christopher West has a great gift for theological exploration. In this book he weaves lessons from classical and contemporary art, pop music, movies and the Christian mystical tradition to explore the ancient idea that the yearnings we feel in our bodies and spirits reveal the cry of our hearts for God."
–Nicky Gumbel, vicar and bestselling author of Questions of Life

"Drawing deeply from the well of the Theology of the Body, Christopher West explains that the Faith is not simply about following a code of conduct but about Beauty. The beauty of the human body, the beauty of our culture and the beauty of the whole cosmos are all a reflection of this same Beauty. This is the mystery that needs to be proclaimed joyfully for all to hear for it holds the key to joy in this life and the next, for each of us. Above all, West writes with this joy."
 –David Clayton, Artist in Residence and Fellow at Thomas More College

"Christopher West is a gifted and effective evangelist with a passion for tackling one of the greatest obstacles to belief today: the heresy that Christianity is a joyless, rule-bound religion. Not so, argues West, in this timely, powerful book. Drawing upon Scripture, the saints and the glimmers of truth in pop culture, West reminds us that Christianity is essentially a love story, and Christian sexual ethics exist to help us fulfill, not repress, our deepest desires. For anyone who has ever doubted that Christ’s call to purity of heart is good news, Fill These Hearts will prove a surprising and consoling read, one with the potential to change your life as well as your mind."
–Colleen Carroll Campbell, author of My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir
 
"In Fill These Hearts, Christopher West explains the nature of desire, freedom, and love, including erotic love. He does so as a believing Catholic, yes. But if you come to this book with the typical prejudices aimed at what Catholics believe about these things, you are likely to be shaken to your very core. Be warned: this book is unlike any other you’ve ever read. It holds up the spirit of our age – as expressed in modern, presumed “secular” idioms like rock ‘n’ roll and popular movies – and places it under the searchlight of the most fundamental understandings of human nature. What emerges is a book that is as knowing about the modern world as it is about the teachings of Christ and the mystic-saints who have followed him throughout the ages. In fact, West brings these phenomena together in a way that has never been done before, and does so without a false note on either score."
–John Waters, columnist, The Irish Times and author of Lapsed Agnostic
 
 
 
 
 

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307987143
Publisher:
The Crown Publishing Group
Publication date:
01/08/2013
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
468,921
File size:
3 MB

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher

"Well done! Christopher West has done a masterful job of confronting the inherent dualism lurking in much of modern Western theology, exposing the deepest longings of the human soul as an authentic yearning for union with God.”  
–Wm. Paul Young, author of The Shack and Cross Roads
 
"Fill These Hearts is a cultural balm. Christopher West writes with great love, of great love, drawing readers into His Sacred Heart."
–Kathryn Jean Lopez, nationally syndicated columnist and editor-at-large, National Review
 
"Christopher West has a great gift for theological exploration. In this book he weaves lessons from classical and contemporary art, pop music, movies and the Christian mystical tradition to explore the ancient idea that the yearnings we feel in our bodies and spirits reveal the cry of our hearts for God."
–Nicky Gumbel, vicar and bestselling author of Questions of Life

"Drawing deeply from the well of the Theology of the Body, Christopher West explains that the Faith is not simply about following a code of conduct but about Beauty. The beauty of the human body, the beauty of our culture and the beauty of the whole cosmos are all a reflection of this same Beauty. This is the mystery that needs to be proclaimed joyfully for all to hear for it holds the key to joy in this life and the next, for each of us. Above all, West writes with this joy."
 –David Clayton, Artist in Residence and Fellow at Thomas More College

"Christopher West is a gifted and effective evangelist with a passion for tackling one of the greatest obstacles to belief today: the heresy that Christianity is a joyless, rule-bound religion. Not so, argues West, in this timely, powerful book. Drawing upon Scripture, the saints and the glimmers of truth in pop culture, West reminds us that Christianity is essentially a love story, and Christian sexual ethics exist to help us fulfill, not repress, our deepest desires. For anyone who has ever doubted that Christ’s call to purity of heart is good news, Fill These Hearts will prove a surprising and consoling read, one with the potential to change your life as well as your mind."
–Colleen Carroll Campbell, author of My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir
 
"In Fill These Hearts, Christopher West explains the nature of desire, freedom, and love, including erotic love. He does so as a believing Catholic, yes. But if you come to this book with the typical prejudices aimed at what Catholics believe about these things, you are likely to be shaken to your very core. Be warned: this book is unlike any other you’ve ever read. It holds up the spirit of our age – as expressed in modern, presumed “secular” idioms like rock ‘n’ roll and popular movies – and places it under the searchlight of the most fundamental understandings of human nature. What emerges is a book that is as knowing about the modern world as it is about the teachings of Christ and the mystic-saints who have followed him throughout the ages. In fact, West brings these phenomena together in a way that has never been done before, and does so without a false note on either score."
–John Waters, columnist, The Irish Times and author of Lapsed Agnostic
 
 
 
 
 

Meet the Author

CHRISTOPHER WEST is a research fellow and faculty member of the Theology of the Body Institute. He is also one of the most sought after speakers in the Church today, having delivered more than 1,000 public lectures on four continents, in more than a dozen countries, and in over 200 American cities. His books--Good News About Sex & Marriage; Theology of the Body Explained; and Theology of the Body for Beginners--have become Catholic bestsellers.

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Fill These Hearts: God, Sex, and the Universal Longing 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
MLJW24 More than 1 year ago
This ranks with a very small number of books that are truly "Life Changing" without such a claim being mere hyperbole. For me, this alters forever the view of God, Sex and what it actually means to be a human being. It will be impossible for me to view movies, music, food, sex, desire, God, relationships, in the same way after reading this book. It is like going from grainy black & white film to IMAX 3D. Rarely have I been drawn in to read a book cover to cover in one sitting, but this was a quick, exciting, entertaining, but profound journey of revelation about what humans ache for, the deepest longing for love and the ache and fear of loneliness. It felt like reading a book co-written by Seth Godin/Tribes and Rick Warren/The Purpose Driven Life. But, this was not a practical guide to do anything or 'become' something different. This was an exposition, a discovery of who we already are, but may have forgotten or perhaps never known. In doing so, it changes everything about life and who we are, what we want and why we want it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is phenomenal!!! Christopher West is a genius!  I was once teetering on the edge of becoming a Christian, and Christopher West's book "At The Heart of The Gospel" is what pushed me over! Now, this new book, I had to get and read immediately!!  There's so much tangible truth to this message, it truly is universal! THIS BOOK IS AMAZING!!   I may even convert to Catholicism cause this book makes more sense and gets me yearning for God more than a Max Lucado or Joel Osteen book (both good authors though).  BUY IT!  READ IT!! DISCOVER GOD'S LOVE!!! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I highly recommend the book. If you've heard Christopher West speak you'll appreciate it as a followup, if you've not heard him and you read this you most certainly will want to seek out one of his presentations.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a wonder filled book. It gives light to understanding the desires and longings of our heart's. It's helping me understand and direct them in a proper manner, bringing peace to my mind and giving rest to my desires and longings as I wait for them to be fulfilled in their perfect timing. A new light to my waiting as I continue to try and understand my humanity and my erotic longings for the infinit, who alone can bring complete satisfaction to our aching, these longings in the human heart. It has helped me understand me better and it's helping me overcome my heart break as well. Thank you for writing this indispensable book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago