The Invisible Church: Finding Spirituality Where You Are (Psychology, Religion, and Spirituality) First Edition; First Printing
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Frequently bought together
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
"The Invisible Church by Pittman McGehee and Damon Thomas is the most provocative understanding of the psychology of religion that I have read since Erich Fromm's The Art of Loving. It speaks to our obvious questions. It awakens our unconscious yearnings." (John Shelby Spong, Author, Jesus for the Non-Religious)
"For the thoughtful modern, The Invisible Church: Finding Spirituality Where You Are, opens a path between mindless literalism on the one hand and arid secularism on the other. McGehee and Thomas reclaim the psychological profundity of religion while simultaneously summoning the reader to grow into spiritual maturity. With wit, humor, and parabolic insight, they wonderfully open the reader to discern the Divine moving through the forms of our daily lives." (James Hollis, Ph.D., Jungian analyst in Houston, Texas)
"Our Mother, the Church, is in desperate need of restoration in our troubled times! I know of no better authority than Rev. Pittman McGehee to address this formidable task." (Robert A. Johnson D. Hum, Author of numerous bestsellers including She, He, We and Inner Work)
"Feisty, pungent, learned, and always thought provoking, J. Pittman McGehee points us to spiritual experiences without walls. Essential reading for anyone interested in direct, lived experience of the sacred." (Dr. Jerry M. Ruhl, Jungian psychologist and co-author of Living Your Unlived Life and Balancing Heaven and Earth)
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
In my twenties my therapist tried to initiate a sexual relationship with me. When I resisted his advances, he became furious and lashed out at me. They say Hell hath no wrath like a woman scorned, but when a man's fragile ego is bruised because his advances are rejected, men can be pretty vicious too. It was a nightmare.
I was strong enough to leave but I felt emotionally violated and abandoned plus I had been with him for months and since I paid a lot of money for that mistreatment, I also felt robbed. Thus, I don't see psychologists like Jung as the good guys waging war against the bad guys (fundamentalists) as the author seems to.
However, I can certainly relate to the author's objections about some fundamentalists and the damage they do. I bounced around for a long time trying this church and that church naively believing that if the church said it was a Christian Church, it would distribute the grace I experienced in Sunday School as a child.
Let's see, there was the prosperity movement. That was a hoot. Then there was the praise the Lord so everyone can see how happy Christians are and get saved. There were the guilt provoking sermons about whether or not people could see Jesus in me. Had I witnessed? Did I smile and look happy so people would want what I had? Of course not! I was dying inside at the time! Was I a soul winner for Jesus? Then there was the church where the whole congregation was praying for God to give the minister a Mercedes so people could see how God blesses his people and get saved. That too was a nightmare.
But eventually a pastor in a very conservative fundamentalist Church (who also happened to be a recovering alcoholic) got me involved in Adult Children of Alcoholics meetings. That's when my inner work began. That's actually when my life began. That fundamentalist will always be a hero to me.
Point being, every profession, religion and every denomination has the good, the mediocre and the horrible.
Another example? One of my girlfriends had a psychologist who tried to convince her to remove her clothing while he watched. It was a "trust" exercise. She came to me a bit puzzled that her psychologist would ask her to consider that. She didn't know if she should or not? After all, he was only encouraging her to strip down to her bra and underwear and she revealed that much skin in a bathing suit at the beach didn't she? She wasn't a naive teenager and suspected the more she demonstrated her trust for him, the more clothing he would eventually ask her to remove. I knew of him through a mutual acquaintance who knew him socially. They assured me he was a practicing alcoholic.
I'm happy to say I was instrumental in connecting her with an ethical psychology teacher I was taking a class from at the time so the rug was not pulled completely out from under her feet like it was mine.
I can still see that psychology teacher jumping up out of his chair, his eyes flashing when he heard what that psychologist was prescribing for her. He told me to have my friend call him and then walked her through breaking the bond with her old therapist and continued treating her.
She simply told her psychologist she was discontinuing therapy at which point he told her she would never survive psychologically. She would be like a surgery patient left on the operating table in the middle of surgery. He didn't know she had a very ethical psychologist waiting in the wings to reassure her she would be just fine and immediately provide competent treatment.
That psychology teacher will always be a hero to me. It's as if he jumped on his white horse, rode off and rescued my friend preventing her from going through the hell I went through. He not only helped her, he helped restore my faith in mankind.
We all need heros. I get the impression that Mr. McGehee considers Jung a hero, and that's fine if that works for him. Yet it's an undisputed fact that Jung carried on a sexual relationship with a young woman in his care for quite a while. So Jung is not now and never will be a hero to me. In fact I understand that Sigmund Freud helped her through that crisis (and not at Jung's request) so maybe I have an easier time seeing Freud as heroic than Jung.
There is some very good stuff in this book, but I personally winced every time the author used the phrase "the Jesus myth" because I have a much easier time believing Jesus was a real man (not just a myth) than I do nearly deifying Jung. I hate the self-righteous, judgemental arritudes of some fundamentalists, but I cherish the fundamental beliefs the Christian faith is founded on.
I'm sorry some fundamentalists have branded Mr. McGehee a heretic. I don't feel any one should ever be branded a heretic even if we no longer stone, crucify, or burn people at the stake. But even though I'm pretty liberal, I can assure you that Jungian new age mythology is not the rock I want my church built on, but that's just me, and I've already admitted I could be biased.
I gave this book three stars because the author was
1) so very right about the need for inner work YAY!
2) right about the fact that the kingdom of God is within .. YES!
3) and he is right to warn people about some of the legalistic fundamentalists.
But I don't believe the writing is very accessible to the average person (who is not familiar with Jungian jargon), even if they would not experience the same knee jerk reaction I did (about Jung).
I attended a workshop that Pittman gave in Richmond in September 2010. I even had a chance to sit and have a simple lunch with him. I was honest with him about being a pantheist in my spiritual views. In truth I had violently vomited the Christian belief I was raised with, many years ago. Reading Pittman's book made me find many common points with the author, who stressed several times in the book that being individuated and authentic comes with a high price. I can say that Pittman is the first Christian author (OK, he is liberal by his own admission) who opened the door for any kind of healing from organized religion that has insulted my intellect and scared me with its fear and guilt tactics. The author affirmed my dignity as a seeker and affirmed the sacred path I follow by being open to what all kinds of gifts that myths bring.
During his visit in Richmond, the author mentioned his monthly trips to give talks all over the country, and the discomfort associated from the airport hassles. These hassles are tempting him to stop traveling, but he is not sure what to do. I would ask the author "What would Jesus do?", or much better yet (borrowing from the author's own book) "What would (the fully individuated) Pittman do?"
I highly recommend this book for readers who want to salvage their "organized religion" beliefs and are willing to encounter the spark of the divine that dwells within! Finally I want to thank the authors (sorry that I only focused on Pittman as the author in my review) for an open and honest book that brings many blessings.