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5.0 out of 5 stars Best book of Roman Catholic theology to come this millenium, the salvation of our race, if only you will take and read and act, December 27, 2011
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This review is from: Virtues: For Another Possible World (Paperback)
Friar Leonardo Boff has long served as one of the most influential, eloquent and brilliant Roman Catholic theologians, with many of his most noted works of the past quarter century and longer available readily here on amazon. For instance we may well revisit such edifying spiritual treatises as Saint Joseph: The Father of Jesus in a Fatherless Society and Cry of the Earth, Cry of the Poor (Ecology & Justice Series). Earlier academic works include Introducing Liberation Theology, as well as the well known Jesus Christ Liberator: A Critical Christology for Our Time and Trinity and Society and Holy Trinity, Perfect Community. The discerning seeker may also deeply benefit from studying Francis of Assisi: A Model for Human Liberation, whose charism of humble service and compassion this great Catholic theologian so fully incarnates.

This present recent work any reader may find easily accessible and brilliant, moving and inspiring, strengthening our hard task to go out and to love and to rebuild our world in peace.

This work like any classical work of theology is divided into three parts, called by the translator Alexandre Guilherme, Books.

The first part explores deeply our most essential virtue, which is hospitality, "the right and duty of all" as that which defines us as a race and which alone can save our planet. Boff brings in the myth of Philemon and Baucis from Metamorphoses: A New Translation by Charles Martin in a brilliant, gracious and thorough bilingual examination, using the original text. What a joy it is to see the Latin again, accompanied by the perceptive indications of Friar Boff! To follow these passages are to be moved to tears as Boff explains fully what is incumbent upon each of us as members of the human race at this time in history.

And so moving especially for myself, trained in the Benedictine tradition, whose central mystery is precisely hospitality, receiving all, especially the rejected and abandoned and wandering and lost, as Christ, finding God within, a source of unexpected miracles.

The second part of this great work discusses the virtues which form as a fruit of hospitality: Co-living, respect and tolerance, essential if we are to survive as one together, not in mutual assured destruction, but as one people in peace.

The third book brings us to the celebration of our unity as one, though diverse, in exploring the joyous mystery of our communality, of our eating and drinking together in love through our deep, shared concern for the happiness of one another, of our agape, of what Saint Benedict calls the cenobitic life. All of these threads are wonderful woven as one in the section Living in Peace: "A Culture of Peace in a World of Conflict."

Clearly this is talk we have not heard in some time, and talk we need most to hear well now. Under the raging rhetoric of wearying worrisome war which has monopolized us for a decade and more, this is talk which sounds quite strange yet welcome to us. This is the talk we must hear, and act upon, gladly, a great relief, at long last, to hear this strong talk of peace, as the only way we will ever survive, with true security, in peace.

Please read this book very seriously, very joyfully, as if our future depends upon it, as it does.

Boff writes on page fifty: "The animal kingdom is ruled by competition and subordination, and the human kingdom is ruled by mutual care, cooperation, equality, and love." Let us make it so, as God wants for us and all Creation, in Love.

Please study as well a similar treatment of our virtues in Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World. The title is startlingly to some, yet this treatise swiftly delves into the meaning of compassion, empathy, caring, and Love.

Please see as well the edifying, deeply touching, unparalleled excellence and profoundly orthodox examination of our basic Roman Catholic prayers in Praying with Jesus and Mary: Our Father, Hail Mary
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Virtues: For Another Possible World
Virtues: For Another Possible World by Leonardo Boff (Paperback - January 1, 2011)
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