- Paperback: 156 pages
- Publisher: Liturgical Press (May 9, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0814648509
- ISBN-13: 978-0814648506
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,455,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Desperately Seeking Spirituality: A Field Guide to Practice Paperback – May 9, 2016
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About the Author
Meredith Gould, PhD, is a sociologist, longtime spiritual seeker, online community manager, and digital communications professional. Her consulting experience spans all levels of church across denominations. Dr. Gould is nationally known as a passionate advocate of using digital tools for ministry and to encourage practical spirituality. Learn more at www.meredithgould.com.
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For the actively and not-so-actively seeking Seeker, Gould breaks down the “Spiritual Practices of Being” into five essential and clear parts: Willingness, Curiosity, Empathy, Generosity, and Delight. We all feel that we know the definitions of these practices and likely identify with all of them. Meredith’s expressive prose pulls us into friendly discussions and self-examination that quickly shows how much we have to learn about each of these practices! You’ll be as surprised as I was when this short tome leads to personal revelation and change.
One exemplary example of changing how we view these Practices of Being is seen when Gould shares how Curiosity can:
“Slow down reactivity. Pausing or stopping entirely in the midst of turmoil to be curious will create time and space to calm down enough to be witness to whatever is happening.”
That’s expanding the definition of Curiosity in a way that will impact your life, the Seeker’s life, in profound ways. This pattern is repeated again and again in the book – we read about something we recognize and feel comfortable with, Meredith delves under the covers to uncover the greater meaning, and then we find ourselves in a new place.
Meredith’s personal asides and examples bring you into her world, a comfortable place among friends seeking together. It’s this comfort which allows the teachings, techniques, and new viewpoints to take root as you move through the book. Before you know it, this book becomes much more than you thought it would be. It goes deeper into your psyche than you planned on – all the while you’re flipping pages without thinking about it.
Desperately Seeking Spiritually includes many self-examination/reflection exercises throughout. Places to stop and reflect on what you’ve learned, write out some lessons, and internalize some new truths. Truly a field guide, the book gives you the opportunity to grow while you are reading not only upon later reflection.
Required reading for every person who wonders when they look to the Heavens while navigating the busy lives we all lead; the Seeker won’t be disappointed with Meredith’s work. Grab a cuppa, pull up a chair, and jump into Gould’s world that soon becomes your world.
Meredith Gould in her book Desperately Seeking Spirituality tries to smooth out the rough places of spirituality and it’s practices while allowing the reader to find a balance in her/his life. She approaches this through the idea of being a “seeker” of God, a title that will remain with us forever because perfection is never truly attained. She guides the reader through the pitfalls and struggles of faith and spirituality while offering tangible resources, exercises and thoughts to encourage the reader to not give up on finding the spiritual practices and holy moments that will deeply impact our lives.
Gould’s wit and simplicity of style opens this text up to all who are in desperate need of some spirituality or who need a refresh on what it means to seek after God in our everyday life.
At some point in the past, organized religion answered those questions for me. But, as many people, like me, describe themselves as spiritual but not religious, I'm looking to try to answer those questions looking away from organized religion, and looking in other directions. This book helps you find your own way, and where you end up, is up to you...
Each chapter is rich, so I took my time to savor each one. Im a pastor, and I'm pretty well-versed in the methodologies Gould describes, but I found myself re-discovering some that I had forgotten long ago. I got to the end of the book and found myself longing for reconnection to some of these practices.
Gould writes in a familiar style, one that is genuine and doesn't mince words. That gives this book an accessibility for those not familiar with spiritual practices.