Cover image for A spirituality of resistance : finding a peaceful heart and protecting the earth
A spirituality of resistance : finding a peaceful heart and protecting the earth
Gottlieb, Roger S.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Crossroad Pub. Co., [1999]

Physical Description:
x, 195 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
BL624 .G67 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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This personal and powerful book speaks to anyone who has ever wondered how to be happy when there is so much suffering in the world -- anyone who seeks a peaceful heart in a dark time.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gottlieb makes an interesting, passionately written addition to confessional literature. He intends partly to reconcile two sides of his own temperament--a side that "searches for peace" and "would cultivate a forgiving heart" and a side that "rages at injustice" and "cannot affirm a world which contains so much unjustified pain" --and partly to reconcile two unnecessarily opposed groups in the larger society, "political fighters" and "spiritual seekers." His particular passion is environmentalism, and he devotes some time to arguing its uniqueness. Whether it is unique or not, his description of ways in which "ordinary" existence contributes to environmental destruction deserves careful attention. To the extent that spirituality is connected with being at home in the world, a world in which one's deepest commitments are betrayed by the simple act of settling into common routines is spiritually challenging. Turning a critical eye on the temptation to withdraw often associated with spirituality and the temptation to compromise often associated with politics, Gottlieb helps readers thoughtfully address that challenge. --Steven Schroeder

Publisher's Weekly Review

Invoking the spirits of Dorothy Day, Abraham Joshua Heschel and Martin Luther King Jr., Gottlieb (This Sacred Earth: Religion, Nature, Environment) strives to shape a personal spirituality marked by social justice. Most often, he says, people associate spirituality with personal happiness and inner peace. The author notes that most methods of spiritual practice encourage individual growth and spiritual self-esteem. Yet, says Gottlieb, this turn inward spiritually detaches people from the problems of the world where they live their everyday lives. Gottlieb argues that we must stop separating spirituality from social responsibility and instead recognize that our spirituality imbues all our political and social decisions. The author uses the massive evils of the Holocaust and the destruction of the environment to illustrate his thesis that religious people often separate the spiritual from the political. Urging spiritual seekers to identify resistance with spiritual fulfillment, Gottlieb asserts that in such an act "we encounter the face of God, awaken to the call of the Goddess, and realize our deepest connections to the mysteries of human life." Gottlieb's brand of spirituality promotes the achievement of true peace and oneness with all of reality through embracing evil and pain. Gottlieb's pleas for a spirituality that overcomes and resists evil even as it embraces it are eloquent and passionate. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved