What happens when our need for constant newness minimizes our interest in prayer, learning and the mysteries of nature? An intriguing look at spiritual boredom and what the absence of inspiration means to the present and future of the Jewish tradition.
Boredom is a prevalent theme in Herman Melville’s works. Rather than a passing fancy or a device for drawing attention to the action that also permeates his work, boredom is central to the writings, the author argues. He contends that in Melville’s mature work, especially Moby Dick, boredom presents itself as an insidious presence in the lives of Melville’s characters, until it matures from being a mere killer of time into a killer of souls.
In the first book to argue for the benefits of boredom, Peter Toohey dispels the myth that it's simply a childish emotion or an existential malaise like Jean-Paul Sartre's nausea. He shows how boredom is, in fact, one of our most common and constructive emotions and is an essential part of the human experience. This informative and entertaining investigation of boredom--what it is and what it isn't, its uses and its dangers--spans more than 3,000 years of history and takes readers through fascinating neurological and psychological theories of emotion, as well as recent scientific investigations, to illustrate its role in our lives. There are Australian aboriginals and bored Romans, Jeffrey Archer and caged cockatoos, Camus and the early Christians, Durer and Degas. Toohey also explores the important role that boredom plays in popular and highbrow culture and how over the centuries it has proven to be a stimulus for art and literature. Toohey shows that boredom is a universal emotion experienced by humans throughout history and he explains its place, and value, in today's world. "Boredom: A Lively History "is vital reading for anyone interested in what goes on when supposedly nothing happens.
A fascinating look at what will increase spiritual power in your life and ministry. In 48 Laws of Spiritual Power, best-selling author Frank Viola lays out the unchanging principles of tapping into God's power and releasing it to serve others. These laws are based on over thirty years of ministry experience--trench-tested in Frank's life and the lives of others who have spent decades in ministry. Though these laws may seem counterintuitive and uncommon, they will equip you to look for God's power in your ministry. In short, digestible chapters packed with secrets of effective and impactful ministry, 48 Laws of Spiritual Power will equip you with what you need for your ministry to thrive. With straight-to-the-point insights, the book provides a unique perspective on God's work and practical tools for overcoming the inevitable hardships that are part of any ministry. 48 Laws of Spiritual Power will: Help you access God's power in your personal life and release it in the lives of others Introduce you to uncommon wisdom that is rarely talked about in seminary or Bible college Give you a fresh look at how to transform your ministry with the power God is ready to grant you The key to effective ministry is God's power.
In [ital] Becoming a Multicultural Church[ital], Bowers reflects upon and shows how churches can benefit from the experience of First Congregational Church of Randolph, Massachusetts [em dash] the church she pastors [em dash] once a historically "traditional" one social grouping church, but now a "multicultural" church and one of the numerically largest churches in Randolph. She offers practical strategies and explores the processes involved, in a conversational style that will make it an easy read for pastors.
At a time of great material comfort and increasing prosperity more and more people are having that old "is that all there is?" feeling. Many of those enjoying newfound prosperity are now looking for a larger life. Clifford Williams responds to their spiritual restlessness with an engaging book of short, pointed meditations that are sympathetic, timely, and challenging. "This is a book," writes the author, "for those who pause now and then in life's mad rush to think quietly about where they are headed." A "larger life" is the promise of this book to those who wonder why, with all they have, they are still unsatisfied.
Many of our endeavors -- be it personal or communal, technological or artistic -- aim at eradicating all traces of dissatisfaction from our daily lives. They seek to cure us of our discontent in order to deliver us a fuller and flourishing existence. But what if ubiquitous pleasure and instant fulfilment make our lives worse, not better? What if discontent isn't an obstacle to the good life but one of its essential ingredients? In Propelled, Andreas Elpidorou makes a lively case for the value of discontent and illustrates how boredom, frustration, and anticipation are good for us. Weaving together stories from sources as wide-ranging as classical literature, social and cognitive psychology, philosophy, art, and video games, Elpidorou shows that these psychological states aren't unpleasant accidents of our lives. Rather, they illuminate our desires and expectations, inform us when we find ourselves stuck in unpleasant and unfulfilling situations, and motivate us to furnish our lives with meaning, interest, and value. Boredom, frustration, and anticipation aren't obstacles to our goals--they are our guides, propelling us into lives that are truly our own.
Voted Best Book of 2010 by Englewood Review of Books "In whatever place you live, do not easily leave it." –Abba Anthony In an age where we might email a friend in Africa, skype a co-worker in Brazil, and teleconference with people in different time zones–all in one day–the sheer speed of life can be dizzying. Like children stumbling off a merry-go-round, says Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, we are grasping for something to anchor our lives in a sea of constant change. In The Wisdom of Stability, Wilson-Hartgrove illuminates the biblical and monastic understanding of why staying in one place is both a virtue and good for you. "For the Christian tradition," he writes, "the heart's true home is a life rooted in the love of God." When we cultivate an inner stability of heart – by rooting ourselves in the places where we live, engaging the people we are with, and by the simple rhythms of tending to body and soul – true growth can happen. The Wisdom of Stability is a must-read for pastors, leaders, and anyone seeking an authentic path of Christian transformation.
This book assembles the fragments of Henri Lefebvre’s unrealized sociology of boredom and explores the sociohistorical and spatial conditions and contradictions of boredom and everyday life in the modern world.
This book explores the ways in which the body is sacred in Western medicine, as well as how this idea is played out in questions of life and death, of the autopsy and of the meanings attributed to illnesses and disease. Ritual and religious modifications to, and limitations on what may be done to the body raise cross cultural issues of great complexity philosophically and theologically, as well as sociologically - within medicine and for health care practitioners, but also, as a matter of primary concern for the patient. The book explores the ways in which medicine organises the moral and the immoral, the sacred and the profane; how it mediates cultural concepts of the sacred of the body, of blood and of life and death.
Considering how essential fundraising is to ministry, many church leaders remain terrified of asking for or talking about money. Fearless Church Fundraising removes the terror from stewardship, urging leaders to focus on deep spiritual conversion and a clear, compelling mission before they design the pledge cards. In this rich resource part handbook, part workbook, part spiritual guidebook former monk and popular consultant Charles LaFond combines road-tested strategies and sample campaign documents with a spiritual director's sensitivity. The result is an irresistible, user-friendly text that promises to transform your ministry's fundraising and its spiritual life.