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Simple Truths: On Values, Civility, and Our Common Good

Stephen Bauman, Author
Stephen Bauman, Author . Abingdon $19 (180p) ISBN 978-0-687-33341-7
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For 10 years Bauman, senior minister at Christ Church in Manhattan, has been delivering daily one-minute inspirational messages on WCBS Radio; Simple Truths brings 166 of those pieces to print. Most explore questions of civility, faith and the values that we hold—or ought to hold—dear. Daily habits, business ethics, international events and even overheard conversations are all grist for Bauman. There are some "aha" moments in these short meditations, such as one that explores consumer brands as the new religion, or another visiting the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. Overall, however, these short pieces probably played better over the radio than on paper. The content fits what a listener can process during a busy rush hour commute, while book readers tend to seek something a bit meatier. Quite a few are so tightly wrapped up with an unambiguous moral that there is little for the reader to actually contemplate. Others relate to holidays, or to national or political events long past, leaving the reader to imagine the original context. (June)

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