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Marriage: The Mystery of Faithful Love Paperback – 1991


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 84 pages
  • Publisher: Sophia Institute Press; Reprint edition (1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 091847700X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0918477002
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 4.9 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #428,716 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Columbia
These pages are like a psalm written to celebrate the beauty, the wonder, and the mystery of marriage.

Peter Kreeft
Clear . . . and utterly faithful to the truth.

--Personal Endorsements

Language Notes

Text: English, German (translation)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
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See all 15 customer reviews
The passage of time has made this book only more relevant.
Robert R. Quintana, Jr.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone considering marriage or who is already married and wishes to deepen their spousal love.
Thomas DePauw
Von Hildebrand beautifully describes the mystery of conjugal love.
Aquinas

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 7, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
von Hildebrand recovers for our modern world a vision of marriage not often believed to be possible, showing that -- in fact -- such a marriage is both eminently possible and _necessary_, a marriage in which the bond is much deeper than legal or emotional, a marriage in which the couple -- as another reivewer noted -- "fight against themselves on behalf of the other." It is a thing of hard work, of surrender, of bliss, and of deep growth and union. It is a path to true sanctity. This is the marriage for which everyone longs but which few realize is possible.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Joseph P. Tevington on July 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
One hundred and twenty-nine of Pope John Paul II's general audiences (9/5/79 to 11/28/84) have become known to us as his Theology of the Body. In spreading the good news about the late Holy Father's teachings, Christopher West explains: "The Holy Father presents a vision of Marriage and sexuality never before articulated." Clarification may be in order. It takes nothing away from the Theology of the Body to look at some of its influences.

In 1929, German philosopher Dietrich Von Hildebrand published "Marriage," which was excitedly received by his country's papal nuncio (who later became Pope Pius XII). On its web site, EWTN explains that Marriage constituted the "earliest orthodox presentation of the personalistic approach to matrimony which would find its way into Vatican II's Guadium et Spes, Pope Paul VI's encyclical Humanae Vitae and...the writings of Pope John Paul II....Pope Pius XII called von Hildebrand `the 20th century Doctor of the Church.'" Published just one year before Pope Pius XI's Casti Connubii, "Marriage" is a wonderful little book, which reads as fluidly and beautifully as a Christopher West presentation of the Theology of the Body (My quotes are from Sophia Institute's 1997 paperback edition.):

"there is no greater mystery in the natural order of things than the fact that this closest of all unions procreates a human being with an immortal soul (although the soul, in each case, is a direct creation of God), and that this act brings a new being into existence destined to love God and to adore Him, a new being made after His image" (p. 26). "How terrible to think of man wanting to destroy this unity which God has established so mysteriously, deeming those united in the highest earthly union of love worthy to take part in His creative power" (p. 28).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Thomas DePauw on May 23, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book, along with JPII's Theology of the Body, really opened my eyes to the intrinsic meaning of marriage. Here von Hildebrand illuminates the reality of marriage as an objective bond resulting from the spouses' solemn decision to bind themselves to each other in Christ. Because of the objectivity of this bond, von Hildebrand clearly shows that once the solemn vows have been made marriage is outside of a person's arbitrary inclinations, and thus is irrevocable. Furthermore, he points to marriage as a fulfillment of the loving "I-Thou" communion of the spouses, the sacramental vessel through which they raise each other towards God in their love and create, in cooperation with Him, new human beings intended for heaven. In this way von Hildebrand particularly expresses the unique mystery of marriage as a natural good elevated and sanctified by Christ to even such an extent as to symbolize the union between Christ and His Church.

In addition to making the important distinction between the meaning of marriage as conjugal love and the end as procreation, von Hildebrand also serves as a beacon of light on the true nature of love and freedom in a secular world which horribly twists both of these concepts. He quickly points out the absurdity of thinking that love is merely infatuation or attraction and argues forcefully that true love must have an intention of permanent, exclusive self-giving to the beloved, a self-giving which can only become entirely actualized in marriage. Von Hildebrand distinguishes between love of neighbor and conjugal love to show that conjugal love is not simply love of neighbor with superadded sensuality, but rather an entirely unique love oriented towards the beloved in a special way.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Aquinas on November 30, 2008
Format: Paperback
Von Hildebrand beautifully describes the mystery of conjugal love.

Listen to what he says on page 9:

"But two human beings can also turn to face one another, and in touching one another in an interpenetrating glance, give birth to a mysterious fusion of their souls. They become conscious of one another, and making the other the object of his contemplation and responses, each can spiritually immerse himself in the other. This is the I-thou relationship, in which the partners are not side by side, but face to face".

If you like this short book, I would also recommend "the heart".
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By martha on July 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very interesting book. Hildebrand was German and his wife translated the book to English, so I found some passages a bit hard to understand but overall, easy to read.
The topic is not taken seriously enough by the vast majority of people today. Most soon to be married and married would benefit from reading this book.
Written by a philosopher who spoke out against Hitler and had to leave his homeland because of this, Hildebrand was a hero.
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