The Holy Longing: Guidelines for a Christian Spiritualityby Ronald Rolheiser
Pub. Date: 07/28/1999
Publisher: Crown Religion/Business/Forum
Ronald Rolheiser makes sense of what is frequently a misunderstood word: spirituality. In posing the question "What is spirituality?" Father Rolheiser gets quickly to the heart of common difficulties with the subject, and shows through compelling anecdotes and personal examples how to channel that restlessness, that deep desire, into a healthy
Ronald Rolheiser makes sense of what is frequently a misunderstood word: spirituality. In posing the question "What is spirituality?" Father Rolheiser gets quickly to the heart of common difficulties with the subject, and shows through compelling anecdotes and personal examples how to channel that restlessness, that deep desire, into a healthy spirituality.
This book is for those searching to understand what Christian spirituality means and how to apply it to their own lives. Rolheiser explains the nonnegotiablesthe importance of community worship, the imperatives surrounding social action, the centrality of the Incarnation, the sustenance of the spiritual lifeand how spirituality necessarily impacts every aspect of human experience. At the core of this readable, deeply revealing book is an explanation of God and the Church in a world that more often than not doubts the credibility of both.
- Crown Religion/Business/Forum
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- 1st U.S. Edition
- Product dimensions:
- 5.80(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.88(d)
Table of ContentsPreface ix
PART ONE THE SITUATION What Is Spirituality? 3
The Current Struggle with Christian Spirituality 20
PART TWO THE ESSENTIAL OUTLINE FOR A CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALITY
The Nonnegotiable Essentials 45
PART THREE THE INCARNATION AS THE BASIS FOR A CHRISTIAN SPIRITUALITY
Christ as the Basis for Christian Spirituality 73
Consequences of the Incarnation for Spirituality 82
PART FOUR SOME KEY SPIRITUALITIES WITHIN A SPIRITUALITY
A Spirituality of Ecclesiology 111
A Spirituality of the Paschal Mystery 141
A Spirituality of Justice and Peacemaking 167
A Spirituality of Sexuality 192
Sustaining Ourselves in the Spiritual Life 213
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The book is a little slow in the beginning, but once you get in to it, it is absolutely wonderful. It really gets you to think about things using a different perspective. It offers a good explanation as to why we need church to have real faith. It also provides a good explanation of why face to face confessions are good for our souls. It also explains how if we substantiate God within ourselves, we do not need to hand someone the bible or to preach using words to bring God to others,but we will 'radiate the compassion and love of God,-in our faces and our actions.'
From the first paragraph of the preface to the final quote by Julian of Norwich, The Holy Longing was both tender hearted and intellectually stimulating. There was something to underline on 99% of it's 257 pages, and I crammed the margins with notes. (That great line from the preface was a quote from Tielhard de Chardin, who said that most sincere people who lack belief in God lack Him because they have never heard about Him in a correct way.) The Holy Longing compels engaged reading. This book contains the best annotation on The Lord's Prayer that I have ever read, and I love his chapter on participating in the Incarnation. As one person said, half in wonder, half in objection, "It can't be true because it is too good to be true!" As Ronald Rolheiser quotes from the Goethe poem in the first chapter, we are troubled guests on a dark earth. That is the state of everyone at one point or another, often over and over again. We are born with longings and desires, some that can be satisfied here and some which never seem to be. You can tell me that you don't have a spirituality, but as a human being you do have a spirit, with those desires and fears and hopes, and you are doing something about it. From Mother Theresa to Janis Joplin to Princess Diana, no human being- Religious or Irreligious- gets away from being spiritual. The question is, in those three women's lives, did their spirituality make them whole or did it help tear them apart? This fascinating first part would make great dialogue with any seeker, and once Mr. Rolheiser starts talking about specific Christian spirituality I don't think they would stop reading. He carries us from the general to the particular so gently that we can all make the journey. Once he has laid this framework he applies his winsome, conversational tone to the Church as a body of believers, the Paschal Mystery, and social justice and peace…. among other things. He writes real and he writes with reverence, just like he explains that the body of Christ contains the delightful and the unpalatable, and we are called to be in communion with both. And I'd recommend this book. Get ready to ask questions. Reading a good book is an experience, and not a passive one. (Just for example, these are some thoughts that this book inspired: "We live in a grand, detailed, singing world, and it begs us to respond to it. How can we not throw up our arms and embrace the pale blue sky?" "Like Ravi Zacharias asks, are we promised exactly what we want from the prayer vending machine, or are we promised the presence of Christ?" "If Christianity did not revolve around sacrifice, crucifixion, and stigmata all pointing to redemption, then all people in pain, depression, abandonment and illness, all those hospital bound and divorced and dying, they'd know we were lying about Divine and human nature." )
I majored in Religious Studies at a private Catholic university. In my 4 years of study I found this particular book to be the most enjoyable and useful.
This book is very helpful if you are looking for a book to explore your spirituality. Every chapter gives you food for thought.
Loaded with food for thought and for living life more deeply.
wow good book