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On Loving God Paperback – March 17, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 40 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (March 17, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1470197391
  • ISBN-13: 978-1470197391
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 7.4 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #329,720 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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He will love his soul for God's sake; and he will love God for Himself alone.
Julian P. Weber
"On Loving God" is a perfect example of this great saint's insights, intellectual depth, and clear and sophisticated writing style.
Dr. Bojan Tunguz
St Bernard casts new light on God's love and how a Christian should return that love.
Ted Bergin

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

40 of 41 people found the following review helpful By michael p. aparo on March 26, 2001
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading the richly rewarding "On Loving God by Bernard of Clairvaux, Emero Stiegman." It was serendipitious for me, as I was only looking for the author [an old lost friend and my daughter's godfather] on the internet. When I found out he wrote this book, I just had to read it.
It was not easy. Only 42 pages of Bernard's text and another 108 pages of commentary, [plus notes, bibliography and index] make up this slim volume. But don't be fooled: what it lacks in size is more than balanced by its density. It took a long time to read, even though Emero's style is gentle and fluid. But each sentence is packed with solid meat, and one needs time to digest. My conclusion is that Bernard is a genius whom I never really appreciated until I met him again through Emero's eyes and heart. Emero is also a genius for being able to digest and interpret Bernard so lucidly and lovingly.
Emero's conclusion to his commentary reveals much about the two men: In speaking about Bernard's treatise on loving God, he says: "In the strength of its fidelity to the most elemental truths of consciousness this interpretation of the data of experience is justly prized by the phiolospher, who is satisfied in the unity of its vision, and by the theologian, who discovers in it, not applications of doctrine but a source of doctrinal clarification. The philosopher and theologian in everyone who reads Saint Bernard has succumbed to him, What wins attention is not so much his personality - though history agrees he was a charmer - or his style - though his craft was finely honed - but a powerful simplicity in his perception of the human struggle. Breaking though the successive barriers left by cultural evolution to reappropriate this vision is a richly rewarding task.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By L. Bond, Jr. on December 11, 2005
Format: Paperback
This brief book On Loving God is a wonderful summary of God's love for humanity. It is a rich text, studded with support from biblical passages. The running theme throughout this book is, appropriately, love. The book will raise some interesting questions in your mind, such as why you love that which you love. For instance, he mentions that if you love a certain being for what it offers, it is actually that object which it offers that you love, and not the being himself. There are many other fine expositions on the subject of love. . . but I will leave them for you to digest on your own, as I will not be able to relate them to you sufficiently in this review.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Bojan Tunguz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 4, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
St. Bernard of Clairvaux was a French abbot and a reformer of the Cistercian monastic order. He is also one of the most influential Catholic saints. Hir spiritual insights have garnered her such a strong reputation and the following that he was recognized as one of the "Doctors of the Church," a group of 33 holy men and women who have over the centuries made an important impact on Catholic spirituality and theology. The list includes some true intellectual giants, such as St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas. The depth and the breadth of their works have probably not been surpassed by the thinkers in any field of human intellectual endeavor. On the other hand there are those Doctors of the Church who may not have written much, but their particular insights and visions have proved to be so important and influential that their contributions deservedly need to be held in the highest esteem. Even though he has not written as many works as St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Bernard's writings are as inspirational, insightful and elegantly written as anything coming from those two giants. "On Loving God" is a perfect example of this great saint's insights, intellectual depth, and clear and sophisticated writing style.

Love is one of the central Christian theological virtues. In fact, it could be argued that the entire message of Christianity can be summed in one short phrase: God is Love (1 Jn 4:16). However, the kind of love that God is, and how it relates to our human love can sometimes be very hard to grasp. St. Bernard aims to answer these questions in a systematic way that relies on Scripture, Tradition, and philosophical insights.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Julian P. Weber on April 4, 2009
Format: Paperback
The reason for loving God is God Himself; and the measure of love due to Him is immeasurable love. Nothing is more reasonable, nothing is more profitable. If one seeks for God's claim upon our love here is the chiefest: Because He first loved us (I John 4:19). (Chapter 1)

Man must seek in his own higher nature for the highest gifts; and these are dignity, wisdom and virtue. By dignity I mean free-will, whereby he not only excels all other earthly creatures, but has dominion over them. Wisdom is the power whereby he recognizes this dignity, and perceives also that it is no accomplishment of his own. And virtue impels man to seek eagerly for Him who is man's Source, and to lay fast hold on Him when He has been found. Pride only, the chief of all iniquities, can make us treat gifts as if they were rightful attributes of our nature, and, while receiving benefits, rob our Benefactor of His due glory. (Chapter 2)

To them that long for the presence of the living God, the thought of Him is sweetest itself: but there is no satiety, rather an ever-increasing appetite, even as the Scripture bears witness, 'they that eat me shall yet be hungry' (Ecclus. 24:21). 'Whoso eateth My flesh and drinketh My blood hath eternal life' (John 6:54). That signifies, whoso honors My death and after My example mortifies his members which are upon the earth (Col. 3:5) shall have eternal life, even as the apostle says, 'If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him' (II Tim. 2:12). (Chapter 4)

'What shall I render unto the Lord for all His benefits towards me?' (Ps. 116:12). Reason and natural justice alike move me to give up myself wholly to loving Him to whom I owe all that I have and am.
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