Letters from the American Desertby Frederick Glaysher
Fully cognizant of the relativism and nihilism of modern life, Glaysher finds a deeper meaning and purpose for the individual and the world community in the writings and
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In Letters from the American Desert, Glaysher reflects on the cultural, political, and religious history of Western and non-Western civilizations, pondering the dilemmas of postmodernity.
Fully cognizant of the relativism and nihilism of modern life, Glaysher finds a deeper meaning and purpose for the individual and the world community in the writings and global vision of Baha'u'llah, as expressed in "The Universal Principles of the Reform Bahai Faith." Confronting the antinomies of the soul, grounded in the dialectic, Glaysher charts a path beyond the postmodern desert.
Alluding to Martin Luther and W. B. Yeats at All Souls Chapel, "metaphors for poetry," Glaysher meditates on the universal, moderate form of the Bahai Teachings as interpreted by Abdul-Baha, who had spoken throughout the West in Europe, England, and the United States from 1911 to 1913. Abdul-Baha's message of the oneness of God, all religions, and humankind holds out a new hope and vision for a world in spiritual and global crisis.
Far from a theocracy, the Reform Bahai Faith envisions a separation of church and state as the will of God, in harmony and balance with universal peace, in a global age of permanent pluralism, in a world of multiplicity, where religion is a distinctive mark of the individual, not of collective, communal identity.
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Meet the Author
Frederick Glaysher studied writing under a private tutorial, at the University of Michigan, with the poet Robert Hayden and edited both Hayden’s Collected Prose (University of Michigan Press) and his Collected Poems (Liveright). He holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from the University of Michigan, the latter in English. At the college and university level, he taught American and non-Western literature, world religions, etc., for ten years.
Mr. Glaysher lived for more than fifteen years outside Michigan—in Japan, where he taught at Gunma University in Maebashi; in Arizona, on the Colorado River Indian Tribes Reservation, site of one of the largest internment camps for Japanese-Americans during WWII; in Illinois, on the central farmlands and on the Mississippi; ultimately returning to his suburban hometown of Rochester. He has been a Fulbright-Hays and NEA scholar on China and India and has traveled and studied throughout China.
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