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The Dark Night of the Soul
 
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The Dark Night of the Soul [Formato Kindle]

Gerald G. May

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Descrizione prodotto

Sinossi

Now in paperback: a distinguished psychiatrist, spiritual counsellor and bestselling author shows how the dark sides of the spiritual life are a vital ingredient in deep, authentic, healthy spirituality.

Gerald G. May, MD, one of the great spiritual teachers and writers of our time, argues that the dark 'shadow' side of the true spiritual life has been trivialised and neglected to our serious detriment. Superficial and naively upbeat spirituality does not heal and enrich the soul. Nor does the other tendency to relegate deep spiritual growth to only mystics and saints. Only the honest, sometimes difficult encounters with what Christian spirituality has called and described in helpful detail as 'the dark night of the soul' can lead to true spiritual wholeness.

May emphasises that the dark night is not necessarily a time of suffering and near despair, but a time of deep transition, a search for new orientation when things are clouded and full of mystery. The dark gives depth, dimension and fullness to the spiritual life.


Dettagli prodotto

  • Formato: Formato Kindle
  • Dimensioni file: 289 KB
  • Lunghezza stampa: 236
  • Numeri di pagina fonte ISBN: 0060554231
  • Editore: HarperCollins e-books; Reprint edizione (31 marzo 2009)
  • Venduto da: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Lingua: Inglese
  • ASIN: B0020Q3FK4
  • Da testo a voce: Abilitato
  • X-Ray:
  • Posizione nella classifica Bestseller di Amazon: #205.719 a pagamento nel Kindle Store (Visualizza i Top 100 a pagamento nella categoria Kindle Store)

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Amazon.com: 4.6 su 5 stelle  47 recensioni
98 di 102 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
4.0 su 5 stelle They Say the Darkest Hour is Right Before the Dawn 16 aprile 2006
Di Andrew Schonbek - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile
In this book, profound but obscure like the material with which it deals, psychiatrist Gerald May describes a process of spiritual growth that is operational in the difficult seasons of life.

Drawing from the experiences of Teresa of Avila and John of the Cross, he explores a journey of consciousness that leads us into the recognition of "our deep and irrevocable communion with the Divine".

It is a path through darkness, a path of letting go, a path of abandoning oneself, losing oneself, and in so doing ultimately finding what is real. The following quotes reveal something of this journey:

* The darkness of the night implies nothing sinister, only that the liberation takes place in hidden ways, beneath our knowledge and understanding.

* Although not knowing may itself seem like a bad thing, I am convinced it is one of the great gifts of the dark night of the soul.

* The spiritual life for Theresa and John has nothing to do with actually getting closer to God. Union with God is neither acquired nor received; it is realized, and in that sense it is something that can be yearned for, sought after, and - with God's grace - found.

* The dark night helps us to become what we are created to be: lovers of God and one another.

* ...we are not only born with God at our center, but we are born with a heart full of desire for God. This yearning is our fundamental motive force; it is the human spirit. It is the energy behind everything we seek and aspire to.

* Liberation, whether experienced pleasurably or painfully, always involves relinquishment, some kind of loss.

* Sometimes the only way we can enter the deeper dimensions of the journey is by being unable to see where we are going.

* ...in worldly matters it is good to have light so we know where to go without stumbling. But in spiritual matters it is precisely when we do think we know where to go that we are most likely to stumble.

* When we cannot chart our own course, we become vulnerable to God's protection, and the darkness becomes a "guiding night," a "night more kindly than the dawn."

* We cannot achieve our own liberation or fulfillment; we would not even know where to begin. But neither does God reach down from the sky and manipulate us like puppets. ...the process of the dark night is neither accomplished on our own nor worked within us by God alone.

* Though we don't realize it at the time, when habitual senses of God do disappear in the process of the dark night, it is surely because it is time for us to relinquish our attachment to them. We have made an idol of our images and feelings of God, giving them more importance than the true God that they represent.

* The darkness, the holy unknowing that characterizes this freedom, is the opposite of confusion and ignorance. Confusion happens when mystery is an enemy and we feel we must solve it to master our destinies. And ignorance is not knowing that we do not know. In the liberation of the night we are freed from having to figure things out, and we find delight in knowing that we do not know.

It is comforting to come to understand that what we may experience as painful, dry, and difficult periods of life are often seasons of deep becoming. It is another way by which we learn that, as the Lord said it to St. Paul, "My grace is sufficient; my power is made perfect in weakness".
98 di 108 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Sheds light on the "dark night" 19 febbraio 2004
Di Un cliente - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina rigida|Acquisto verificato Amazon
Pray-ers who have experienced the rich silence of quiet prayer typically find themselves feeling strangely unsatisfied after praying this prayer for a while. The sense of God's presence and love wanes and a growing sense of one's being somehow off track increases. This beautifully written and highly informative little book by one of the present time's most eloquent and knowledgeable mystics is a trustworthy guide to what lies ahead. It's central message is that the prayer of quiet is God's doing, not one's own, and that one's emotional and psychological responses are transitory and not of God. The call is to wait patiently, trustingly, and faithfully, and know that in the dark mystery God is working to bring the soul closer to God. Dr. May's decades of reading and praying with John of the Cross and Teresa of Avila shine forth in this book.
33 di 35 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Helpful understanding of the "Dark Night" 25 dicembre 2005
Di Angel Book Reader - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile|Acquisto verificato Amazon
Gerald May in this book helps the reader to appreciate the spiritualities of both St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of Avila. Rather than looking at the dark night of the soul as something negative, the author looks at it from a very positive perspective. He says, "The dark night is a profoundly good thing. It is an ongoing spiritual process in which we are liberated from attachments and compulsions and empowered to live and love more freely." There is a strong liberation perspective in the whole book. Again and again, the author looks at this phenomenon as liberation for freedom and this freedom is freedom for love.

The author identifies some misunderstandings that people have about the dark night and tries to correct them. He says it is not negative or sinister; there is no need for a big and dramatic tragedy for authentic spiritual growth to take place; and that the dark night of the soul is not something that occurs once in a lifetime.

Attachment is a compulsive condition that robs us of our freedom. He describes unpleasant attachments as those we consider as being bad habits. He says when these hinder our love, they become addictions and in spiritual life, the objects of our attachments and addictions become idols. He says our attachments are very successfully when we live in denial. The problem with spiritual denial is that it makes us unaware of our idolatry and enables us to believe we have a full and free capacity for love.

The author says for St. John of the Cross, the dark night of the soul is "a secret way in which God not only liberates us from our attachments and idolatries, but also brings us to the realization of our true nature. The night is the means by which we find our heart's desire, our freedom for love." Though the dark night is meant to liberate us, it may not feel pleasurable. One feeling certain in the experience is that of obscurity and a sense of loss. Even when this experience seems to be pleasant, they would still be some sense of grief because of the loss involved in the liberation.

The freedom experienced in the dark night of the soul is a freedom to love. It is not just freedom from, it is a freedom for love. The author says, "Human beings exist because of love, and the meaning and goal of our lives is love. ... Liberation from attachment is only a means to this end." In this sense then, the dark night experience helps us to become who we truly are, to realize our true nature and capabilities as that of love. In this experience, we are no longer blurred by our selfish desires, nor are our lives veiled in denial. We become the person God created us to be.

I find chapter six of the book, "The Dark Night Today" as the most important chapter in the book. He uses the dark night experience to discuss depression, addiction, personality and gender, spiritual companionship and social systems.

I highly recommend this book. It is clear, well written and practical.
17 di 17 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Are you becoming a mystic? 1 luglio 2009
Di J. Meisenbacher - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile
If you are a mystic, if you know God by direct intimate experience, you need not read this book.

If you think mysticism is better left to the few then you are probably not ready to ready this book.

If you recognize that you are on your way along the only real journey in life then I recommend reading this book.

We might think from the title of John's book, The Dark Night of the Soul, is of something completely painful, scary, horrible that we have to get through once before the final prize.

We might think that a psychiatrist's explanation would be a bunch of medical mumbo jumbo devoid of a personal spiritual perspective.

We would be wrong on both accounts.

Dr. Gerald May provides numerous insights from his study of himself and of the old Spanish writings of John of the Cross and Teresa of Avila - two Spanish mystics who lived about 400 years ago.

If found two points particularly enlightening:

1) Dark in this case always means obscure / hidden. The experience may feel bad or good.
2) We will not have one great dark night. John, Teresa, and Gerald have had many dark nights of the soul. So have you and there will be more to come.

If you know that you are on the path towards mystical union with God then this book is with worth a look. If you can understand that the answer it gives is that you cannot know the answer then you are ready to read it.

Good luck on the journey.
12 di 12 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Gentle growth 14 marzo 2007
Di Perpetua - Pubblicato su Amazon.com
Formato:Copertina flessibile|Acquisto verificato Amazon
In his last book published before his death, Jerry May unfolds his vast knowledge and understanding of the spirtual state known as the Dark Night. Contrary to what one might think, the Dark Night is not the same as clinical depression, nor is it dark and depressing. Rather, it is, in the words of St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross, "obscure," because we don't understand what God is accomplishing in us. It is a very comforting and illuminating book. No one can make these Sixteenth Century saints clearer in the light of modern psychiatry like Gerald May, MD. An excellent book.

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&quote;
The spiritual life for Teresa and John has nothing to do with actually getting closer to God. It is instead a journey of consciousness. Union with God is neither acquired nor received; it is realized, and in that sense it is something that can be yearned for, sought after, andwith Gods gracefound. &quote;
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&quote;
Liberation, whether experienced pleasurably or painfully, always involves relinquishment, some kind of loss. &quote;
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This deepening of love is the real purpose of the dark night of the soul. The dark night helps us become who we are created to be: lovers of God and one another. &quote;
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