Thursday, May 28, 2009

Call It a Comeback?

I know, I know. I slacked off for a while there. The blog gods are probably all frowny.

Anyway. Let's begin. So I’m going to have to take a book back to the library. I’m sure it’s great; I just haven’t been able to get into it, and it's already overdue. It’s Leap Over a Wall by Eugene Peterson. Fans of the Bible paraphrase The Message will recognize the name.

It’s been a while since I read any contemporary spirituality, actually. Although I did like Blue Like Jazz. And a few weeks ago I needed to skim Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis for work purposes, if that counts as spiritual reading. The thing is, I found that exercise to be a little bit disorienting. Lewis is very thinky. And that’s great and everything. But that cerebral quality made me feel like I was chasing intellectual rabbits all over the place long after I'd put the book down. I didn’t feel like I’d absorbed anything.

My priest once closed an e-mail with a quote from an early church father. I can’t remember it exactly—and my Googling turned up nothing—but it said something like, “The mark of true wisdom is that it leads you to stillness and quiet in your mind.” I’m not ready to write off all modern spiritual writing. I’m sure there’s some great stuff out there I don’t know about, and I'm probably just too immature or too easily led into overthinking to really benefit from most spiritual authors. But a lot of what I read feels busy and jumpy; it feels like it’s on shaky ground. It doesn’t feel very peaceful, and it doesn’t feel very true.

Maybe I’ll return to spiritual books someday soon. But for right now, I think a sojourn away from modern authors isn’t such a bad thing. Keep it simple.

Sorry to get a little heavy on you my first day back. I'll post about Adam Lambert or something soon to make up for it.

Peace out.


Lisa said...

Anthony de Mello has served me pretty well for modern spiritual writing lately. And of course, for something decidedly less modern you could always try Teresa of Avila. :)

Jessica said...

Are you my sister? :) I haven't read any Anthony de Mello, but his Wikipedia entry looks very interesting.

Lisa said...

Luuuuuuuuke...I am your sister. Yep. :)