In a challenging multidisciplinary analysis of psychological change and spiritual development, psychologist Benner (Soulful Spirituality) leads off by arguing that “full personhood comes only from a lifelong journey of becoming that, as we shall see, must be lived in a posture of openness, trust, willingness and surrender.” Blending insights from psychology, theology, anthropology, his own clinical practice, and other disciplines, the author suggests that the adventurous journey of the “awakening self” is one of experiencing the possibility of “radical” transformation leading to oneness with God. Throughout the book, stories from the Christian mystics and other spiritual tutors provide a rich array of examples of communion with the divine as the writer presents his vision of the self as it moves from one stage of consciousness to the next. Benner’s generous use of examples from outside the framework of traditional Christian thought and his rather unorthodox approach to congregational life may make some readers uncomfortable. But if they persist, they will find this profound journey into spiritual and psychological growth provocative, enriching, and full of insights that will stay with them after they have put down the book. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/12/2011 Release date: 02/01/2012 Genre: Religion
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