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Healing the Divide is a bold call to understand Jesus according to the earliest lineage of Christian Mystics--a call to transform our dualistic minds and heal a divided Church. This book is a must-read if you find yourself -frustrated by the fundamentalist and new age polarization of twenty-first-century Christianity; -bewildered by religious pluralism; -searching for Christianity's elusive mystic core. Twenty-first century Christianity is in crisis, careening toward fundamentalism on the one hand and a rootless new age Christianity on the other. Twenty-first century Christianity is also reeling from the maze of religious pluralism. Smith addresses and tempers these extremes by passionately and succinctly revealing Jesus as understood by the Alexandrian mystics. The Alexandrian mystics are the most long standing lineage of early Christian mystics. Their perspective on Jesus celebrates creative tensions, tempers extremes, and reveals Christian mysticism's definitive core.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781620323656
Publisher: Resource Publications (CA)
Publication date: 03/29/2013
Pages: 316
Product dimensions: 8.80(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Amos Smith lived his first ten years overseas and finished his growing up years in Virginia. He has lived in Indonesia, Bolivia, Uganda, India, and has traveled the world since. Smith earned a BA in Comparative Religion from The University of California at Santa Cruz in 1993, an MDiv from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley in 1998, and a DMin from Chicago Theological Seminary in 2008. He is a lifelong student of three streams: Progressive Christianity, Contemplative Christianity, and Quaker Mysticism. Smith began his interest in religion when serving as an acolyte and crucifer at Saint George's Episcopal Church in Arlington, VA. During college days, Smith became a member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). Friends' silent meetings for worship were Smith's introduction to Centering Prayer and Christian Mysticism. In 1999, Amos began his career as an ordained minister in Montana at the base of The Beartooth Mountains. Smith has since served as an ordained minister for eighteen years in Washington, Oregon, and Arizona. Smith is a family man, hiker, amateur musician, seasoned Centering Prayer practitioner, retreat leader, and Contemplative Christian writer. His writing has been published in various newspapers and magazines including The Billings Gazette, The Spokesman Review, Friends Journal: Quaker Thought and Life Today, Chicago Seminary Press, Wipf & Stock Publishers, and Paraclete Press. Amos and his family live in Tucson, AZ.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix

Foreword Dr. Leonard Sweet xi

Preface xv

Part 1 A Beginning

1 A Yearning Too Deep For Words 3

2 Discovering Christianity's Mystic Roots 9

3 Going Deeper Into Paradox 17

Part 2 The Tightrope

4 Tempering the Extremes 35

5 Asking the Age-old Question 52

6 Cyril of Alexandria Proclaims Jesus' Mystic Essence 65

Part 3 Jesus' Exquisite Union of Divinity & Humanity

7 Incarnation: Christianity's Soul 87

8 Rediscovering the Symmetry of the Incarnation 98

Part 4 Clarity & Conviction about Jesus in a Pluralistic World

9 Christian Theology's Essence for the Twenty-first Century & Beyond 115

10 Fragmentation to Wholeness 123

Part 5 The Christian Mystics' Love of the Human Being

11 The Least of These 133

12 The Foreigner 153

Part 6 The Christian Mystics' Love of God

13 The Holistic Mind of The Alexandrian Mystics 169

14 The Silent Prayer of The Alexandrian Mystics 188

15 Understanding The Silent Prayer of The Alexandrian Mystics 202

Part 7 Conclusion

16 Anchored in Jesus According to The Alexandrian Mystics 215

17 Filling in the Trenches, Healing the Divide 226

Afterword Richard Rohr 237


Appendix A Glossary 241

Appendix B The Lineage of Alexandrian Mystics 269

Appendix C The Nicene Creed (325 CE) 271

Appendix D Biblical Roots of The Jesus Paradox (Miaphysite) 273

Appendix E Miaphysite's Geographic Roots Today 277

Appendix F Miaphysite versus Monophysite, and other Early Church Heresies 279

Appendix G Miaphysite's Historic Roots: Redressing the Council of Chalcedon 286

Bibliography 291

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"In Healing the Divide, Amos Smith's fresh perspective preserves the integrity of the Christian mystical epicenter from contamination from both the Christian hard right and the sometimes rudderless new age."
—Cynthia Bourgeault, author of The Wisdom Jesus

"This is a foundational work written in a style that will be respected by scholars—yet easily accessible to ordinary Christians and would-be seekers. The Jesus Paradox revealed in Healing the Divide is needed for the foundational reform and reformulation of the Christian message."
—From the Afterword by Richard Rohr

"Read Healing the Divide and eat the mystery. It's a check-up call to your identity and mission."
—From the Foreword by Leonard Sweet, author of I Am a Follower

"This is the most balanced treatment of Jesus I have ever seen. Maybe this book can alleviate the polarizing madness afflicting Western Christianity today."
—Ken Barnes, UCC Pastor

"Amos Smith writes about the incarnation with great enthusiasm. His work is commendable!"
—William Meninger, Benedictine Monk and author of Julian of Norwich

"This is the clearest and most accessible treatment of Oriental Orthodox Christology I have seen by a Western author."
—Abba Yohannes, Ethiopian Orthodox Monk

"This book is written by a Contemplative Mainline Protestant, foreworded by an Evangelical, with an afterword by a Progressive Catholic. And it's about Oriental Orthodox Mysticism! That's a new breed of ecumenism!"
—Sandra Casey-Martus, Episcopal Priest

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