A Theology of Love: Reimagining Christianity Through A Course in Miracles

Richard Smoley. Inner Traditions, $18.99 trade paper (240p) ISBN 978-1-62055-925-3
Smoley (How God Became God), former editor of Gnosis magazine, urges readers to rescue Christian doctrine from what he believes is contemporary irrelevance by applying Helen Schucman’s bestselling 1979 A Course in Miracles in this unwieldy theological work. He opens with a critique of the shallowness of contemporary Christian thought before taking a confusing route through mysticism to explore creation and how humans construct realities. He draws heavily on Judaism, as well as Hinduism, Buddhism, and esoteric Christianity, to argue for a universal understanding of the interplay between the self and other. The book’s second part is a much clearer, though still disjointed, reworking of Christian notions. Smoley explains the view expressed in A Course that physical reality is illusory and limiting, arising through a false sense of the ego as separate from what one perceives. Based on this, he argues, one should rethink what death means, understand the nature of Jesus, reframe relationships as less transactional, and cultivate new forms of spiritual practice. The final chapter’s outline of the key theological claims of A Course is useful for untangling the earlier arguments. Though many intriguing ideas are presented, Smoley’s oblique style diminishes their impact. This may entice some into learning more about A Course in Miracles, but it delivers a modest payoff on its own. (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 09/03/2019
Release date: 11/01/2019
Genre: Religion
Ebook - 978-1-62055-926-0
Audio Product - 978-1-64411-137-6
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