Waiting: A Nonbeliever's Higher Power

Waiting: A Nonbeliever's Higher Power

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by Marya Hornbacher
     
 

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For those who don't believe in God, feel disconnected from the ideas of God presented in organized religion, or are simply struggling to determine their own spiritual path, Marya Hornbacher, author of the New York Times best sellers Madness and Wasted, offers a down-to-earth exploration of the concept of faith.Many of us have been trained to

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Overview

For those who don't believe in God, feel disconnected from the ideas of God presented in organized religion, or are simply struggling to determine their own spiritual path, Marya Hornbacher, author of the New York Times best sellers Madness and Wasted, offers a down-to-earth exploration of the concept of faith.Many of us have been trained to think of spirituality as the sole provenance of religion; and if we have come to feel that the religious are not the only ones with access to a spiritual life, we may still be casting about for what, precisely, a spiritual life would be, without a God, a religion, or a solid set of spiritual beliefs.In Waiting, best-selling author Marya Hornbacher uses the story of her own journey beginning with her recovery from alcoholism to offer a fresh approach to cultivating a spiritual life. Relinquishing the concept of a universal "Spirit" that exists outside of us, Hornbacher gives us the framework to explore the human spirit in each of us—the very thing that sends us searching, that connects us with one another, the thing that "comes knocking at the door of our emotionally and intellectually closed lives and asks to be let in."When we let it in and only when we do, she says, we begin to be integrated people. And we begin to walk a spiritual path. And there are many points along the way where we stop, or we fumble, or we get tangled up or turned around. Those are the places where we wait.Waiting, you'll discover, can become a kind of spiritual practice in itself, requiring patience, acceptance, and stillness. Sometimes we do it because we know we need to, though we may not know why. In short, we do it on faith.Marya Hornbacher is the author of two best-selling nonfiction titles, Madness: A Bipolar Life and Wasted: A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia. She has also authored a recovery handbook, Sane: Mental Illness, Addiction, and the 12 Steps, and a critically acclaimed novel, The Center of Winter.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
How should an atheist approach the Alcoholics Anonymous program? Writing with affecting prose and remarkable honesty, Hornbacher (Wasted) examines the 12 Steps as a nonbeliever, wrestles with a process that promotes connection to a higher power that may not exist, and is able to find a sober and spiritual life that is independent of God. Arranged so the months of the year parallel the 12 Steps, Hornbacher takes readers through the depths of addiction to moments of sober but solitary reflection, and eventually toward a recovery marked by spiritual purpose and a desire to help others. An atheist referring to "spiritual steps, leading to spiritual experiences" may raise eyebrows, but the author persuasively shows that a personal spirituality is indeed within reach. This work may be invaluable for individuals facing addiction or a crisis of faith, or for anyone having problems squaring the practicality of AA with its religious language. The bottom line seems to be that living a healthy life in the service of others is spiritual enough. (June)
Booklist

Most 12-step programs insist that connection to God or a higher power is necessary for overcoming debilitating addictions. But how does this work for nonbelievers? Best-selling author and award-winning journalist Hornbacher carefully crafts a memoir of her recovery from alcoholism to answer this very question. Connecting each step toward freedom from addiction to months of the year, the author shows how the path to spirituality without God can bring forth healing and wholeness. This involves a process of 'waiting,' slowing down, opening to the stillness and quiet, waiting for answers within. This form of waiting prepares a path for personal grounding that can make us self-sustaining versus needy. Hornbacher's version of spirituality, although without a God being, contains a high regard for the spirit of life and a deep faith in the value of connecting and sharing with others. Her personal experiences reveal the preciousness of self-acceptance and gratitude, and comfort gained through comforting others. An extremely valuable offering for individuals attempting recovery through 12-step programs while questioning God-centered faith and organized religion.

— Susan DeGrane

— Susan DeGrane

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781616491901
Publisher:
Hazelden Publishing
Publication date:
05/18/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
168
Sales rank:
271,678
File size:
2 MB

Meet the Author

Marya Hornbacher is the author of two best-selling nonfiction titles, Madness: A Bipolar Life and Wasted: A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia. She has also authored a recovery handbook, Sane: Mental Illness, Addiction, and the 12 Steps, and a critically acclaimed novel, The Center of Winter.

An award-winning journalist, she lectures nationally on eating disorders and writing. She lives with her husband in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

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Waiting: A Nonbeliever's Higher Power 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
doubtingTom More than 1 year ago
This is part of a growing secular wealth of discussion about recovery. I know that nonbelievers have always been finding recovery by using the Steps but they have been largely written out of AA history. Hornbacher has a fresh new way to look at recovery that no one with an open mind will find offensive. Doubting is so much more humble and maybe more spiritual that certainty. I think so anyway. I read a review by Joe C on RebellionDogsPublishing DOT com and ordered a copy. I've bought three for gifts since then
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading this book. The spiritual direction it took really surprised me.