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Opening the Doors of Wonder: Reflections on Religious Rites of Passage Paperback – April 16, 2008


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Are religious rites of passage all they are cracked up to be? To answer that personal question, Magida sought the memories and wisdom of representatives of the five major world religions. He confesses that his own bar mitzvah was "a great disappointment" that left him with memories of "being yelled at a lot and wearing a suit that never stopped itching." Suspecting that his experience was exceptional rather than normal, he embarked upon a quest to learn whether other religions practice similar rites, how and when such rites are observed, and whether others' experiences of them mirrored or contradicted his own. What he gathered and presents here are insights into the effects of religious rites of passage from 20 high-profile persons, including Catholic comedian Julia Sweeney, Hindu self-help guru Deepak Chopra, Jewish Ms. magazine founder Letty Pogrebin, Buddhist monk Robert Thurman, and Muslim Yusuf Islam (singer-songwriter Cat Stevens). In the end, Magida's book amounts to a primer of world religions, including a brief history of each and its rites. Donna Chavez
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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"This fascinating book airs out a multitude of responses to a spiritual topic that we avoid at our peril - the presence (or lack) of rites of passage in modern America. Magida's style is often poetic, and his interviews reveal, often in surprising ways, how deeply, and often how invisibly, people of all faiths are influenced by religion's rituals and ceremonies. Moreover, they show how the failure or disappointment of our rites of passage can affect the way we deal with transition for the rest of our lives." - Phil Cousineau, author of The Art of Pilgrimage and Once and Future Myths" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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