SOUL MAPS: A Guide to the Midlife Spirit

Mardi Tindal, Author
Mardi Tindal, Author . Augsburg $11.99 (160p) ISBN 978-0-8066-4451-6
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Almost no one relishes the prospect of facing midlife; it hovers darkly on the horizon, crouching to confront us with loss, anxiety and mortality. Have we fulfilled our purpose in life? Have we accomplished what we set out to do in our younger years? How do we measure our worth to others and the world? What are we being called to do with our remaining time? Tindal, adult program coordinator at Five Oaks Center, has confronted her own midlife demons and found some paths that affirm the spiritual wealth of midlife. Using interviews with a number of people—Christians, Hindus, Muslims, Baha'is and Sikhs—she collects pieces of spiritual wisdom about relationships, health, self-esteem and family. For example, Tindal reports that "Nina" learns from her relationship with aging parents that she has a limited amount of time to learn spiritual truths from her elders. The rather simplistic spiritual maps that Tindal offers to those on the midlife journey include daily prayer and meditation, Scripture study, involvement with religious communities and pilgrimages to holy places. Each chapter concludes with several questions that guide readers to ponder the mysteries of midlife. At best, Tindal's reflections teach us that we're not alone in experiencing the bleak valleys of midlife, and that we can learn from others who have traveled these paths before us. In fact, her spiritual truths are so self-evident that readers will wonder why they haven't already discovered them and put them into practice. (Dec.)

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