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Awakening the Spirit, Inspiring the Soul : 30 Stories of Interspiritual Discovery - Wayne Teasdale

Awakening the Spirit, Inspiring the Soul

30 Stories of Interspiritual Discovery

By: Wayne Teasdale (Editor), Martha Howard (Editor)

Hardcover

Published: 1st June 2004
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This fascinating array of thirty original spiritual mini-autobiographies showcases the varied ways that people come to faith - and what that means - in today's multi-religious world. Examining their own journeys from belief to disillusionment and from searching to discovery, contributors from many faiths, ages, and backgrounds tell the stories of how they learned to integrate the life of the Spirit into their daily lives, and the remarkable transformations that followed.

From South Africa to India, Chicago to San Francisco, and many places in between, AWAKENING THE SPIRIT: INSPRING THE SOUL is the first international collection of its kind; it takes readers on a trip through the spiritual lives of Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Muslims, Jews, and people who are continually searching to find their spiritual identity.

Many of these brief, inspiring memoirs exhibit the spirit of interspirituality that is growing in the world today, showing readers how to build the foundation for a religion and spirituality that can serve to unite, rather than divide, humanity.

Published to coincide with the Parliament of the World's Religions in Barcelona, Spain, 2004.

In Aquil Charlton's essay, "Sacred Story," she says, "Hearing the beliefs of others helps tune our ears to the sound of God being evoked in our presence. We can listen to the plights of others for familiar stepping stones and stumbling blocks that remind us of our own path." Isn't this the very gift we bring to bear in spiritual direction? We tune our ears and our hearts to the sound of God being evoked through the directee's sharing. This book, consisting of thirty individual stories, was gathered over the past four years by Teasdale, a Catholic lay monk, and Howard, a medical doctor and practicing Buddhist. As members of the Council for a Parliament of the world Religions' Spiritual Life Circle, they sought "to come to terrns with the value and effectiveness of spirituality across religions and cultures" and "to inquire into what works in all forms of the spiritual life to open minds, expand hearts, and transform lives into radiant examples of compassion, kindness and love-in-action."

This collection, written by people whose lives often reflect openness to more than one tradition (Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Jew) is effective and engaging. While some may find this a "mixed bag" in spiritual sophistication, that is what I found most captivating. This is a valuable resource for our culture, with so many seeking personal growth in spirituality. In a short space, readers can enjoy a range of spiritual experiences that challenge, inspire, and awe.

Russill Paul's essay helps us move into a greater understanding of interspirituality, a "both-and" experience in the spiritual realm. Paul offers a well-developed commentary on interspirituality, understood as the next wave of consciousness. He presents qualitative distinctions important for understanding interspirituality-its benefits and challenges. He observes, "the fear of interspirituality, which is the fear of globalizarion, is reflective of the most basic fear we all have: Will any semblance of our own lives and impressions remain when we merge with the Divine at death?" He continues, "Through an emerging global awareness, the Divine is showing us that our identity is not lost but merges with all things."

These stories invite us in tolisten, to reflect, to make connections and spiritual directors will find numerous uses for them. I can note five. For personal reflection to encounter a wide variety of stories reflecting various religious paths leading to a transformative, often mystical, experience of awakening to new insights, new commitments, new realities. For understanding diverse generations, especially generations different from the director's own. For encountering religious traditions and blends, which will stretch many directors focused in one tradition within their practice. For directees, as stories for spiritual reading. For spiritual growth groups, to invite members to share their own stories.

What I found myself wanting as I read the book was a biographical note for each seeker. Having connected with them at a spiritual level, I wanted to know more. That being said, I recommend this text as a valuable compendium, fostering the hope that our current generation welcomes a resurgence of the mystical tradition in its many manifestations. This is the hope we base our ministry of direction upon, and the Hope we serve.--Margaret Diener"Presence: An International Journal of Spiritual Direction" (09/01/2005)"


In Aquil Charlton's essay, "Sacred Story," she says, "Hearing the beliefs of others helps tune our ears to the sound of God being evoked in our presence. We can listen to the plights of others for familiar stepping stones and stumbling blocks that remind us of our own path." Isn't this the very gift we bring to bear in spiritual direction? We tune our ears and our hearts to the sound of God being evoked through the directee's sharing. This book, consisting of thirty individual stories, was gathered over the past four years by Teasdale, a Catholic lay monk, and Howard, a medical doctor and practicing Buddhist. As members of the Council for a Parliament of the world Religions' Spiritual Life Circle, they sought "to come to terrns with the value and effectiveness of spirituality across religions and cultures" and "to inquire into what works in all forms of the spiritual life to open minds, expand hearts, and transform lives into radiant examples of compassion, kindness and love-in-action."

This collection, written by people whose lives often reflect openness to more than one tradition (Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Jew) is effective and engaging. While some may find this a "mixed bag" in spiritual sophistication, that is what I found most captivating. This is a valuable resource for our culture, with so many seeking personal growth in spirituality. In a short space, readers can enjoy a range of spiritual experiences that challenge, inspire, and awe.

Russill Paul's essay helps us move into a greater understanding of interspirituality, a "both-and" experience in the spiritual realm. Paul offers a well-developed commentary on interspirituality, understood as the next wave of consciousness. He presents qualitative distinctions important for understanding interspirituality-its benefits and challenges. He observes, "the fear of interspirituality, which is the fear of globalizarion, is reflective of the most basic fear we all have: Will any semblance of our own lives and impressions remain when we merge with the Divine at death?" He continues, "Through an emerging global awareness, the Divine is showing us that our identity is not lost but merges with all things."

These stories invite us in--tolisten, to reflect, to make connections--and spiritual directors will find numerous uses for them. I can note five. For personal reflection to encounter a wide variety of stories reflecting various religious paths leading to a transformative, often mystical, experience of awakening to new insights, new commitments, new realities. For understanding diverse generations, especially generations different from the director's own. For encountering religious traditions and blends, which will stretch many directors focused in one tradition within their practice. For directees, as stories for spiritual reading. For spiritual growth groups, to invite members to share their own stories.

What I found myself wanting as I read the book was a biographical note for each seeker. Having connected with them at a spiritual level, I wanted to know more. That being said, I recommend this text as a valuable compendium, fostering the hope that our current generation welcomes a resurgence of the mystical tradition in its many manifestations. This is the hope we base our ministry of direction upon, and the Hope we serve.

--Margaret Diener "Presence: An International Journal of Spiritual Direction "

Foreword
Introduction
The golden rule : an evolutionary future
Look inside, look outside : concentric circles of interfaith actionp. 1
Know love, know lifep. 6
Down from the mountainp. 7
A Muslim at the Catholic workerp. 12
To be a menschp. 18
Finding harmony in the spiritual journeyp. 22
The giftp. 28
One small step can change your lifep. 33
Fulfilling the heart's deepest longingp. 35
Awakeningp. 41
The search for narrativep. 52
The fly boxp. 57
How the AIDS pandemic changed my lifep. 62
Religious diversity on the spiritual pathp. 66
Sacred storyp. 72
Vision of the futurep. 77
Ethical speech as spiritual practicep. 86
In search of myselfp. 89
I dop. 98
Spiritual searchp. 103
Interspirituality : the next wave of consciousnessp. 110
Witnessp. 118
Living Christ, living gurup. 122
My path back to Judaism was paved in breakbeats : the return of a Jewish B-boyp. 132
From mourning to lightp. 139
Sustaining a commitment to the common goodp. 150
Watching the previewsp. 157
The yellow carnationp. 160
The secret of the six perfections and the four immeasurable mindsp. 164
A Christian contemplative in an interspiritual worldp. 173
Conclusion : toward a unified humanity : from the age of materialism to the age of integral spiritualityp. 180
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781594730399
ISBN-10: 1594730393
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 244
Published: 1st June 2004
Publisher: Jewish Lights Publishing
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2  x 2.2