The soul’s winter (1)

In present-day culture we are trained to confuse hope with optimism.  Thus when writers bring up the subject of the consolations of religion in the face of setback, despair, disease, or death, the temptation is strong for them to appeal to a market that hungers for easy solutions and total satisfactions. p. ix

. . . Serious people, after reflection, sooner or later come to resent the promises of optimism. p. x

When life gets down to basics, of course one wants the consoling words, the comforting sayings, the voices of hope preserved on printed pages.  But they make sense only against the background of, and in interplay with, the dark words.  Dark/light.  Night/day.  Winter/summer. . . . p. xii

More often, to my surprise, the absence of which [those who responded to the first edition of the book] wrote . . . was occasioned not by death but by other experiences.  Almost always they can be summarized by two words: separation or alienation. p. xiv

. . . We do well to draw upon company and communion formed before, during, and after the profound experiences of life. p. xvi

 – from the preface to A Cry of Absence: Reflections for the Winter of the Heart

(c) 1983-1997 Martin E. Marty


5 thoughts on “The soul’s winter (1)

  1. godschildrenorg 06/29/2015 / 12:15 am

    My soul has been through many Dark Winters….no matter how weak my faith became, or how angry I was at God, God helped me find a way to hang on until Spring came. Though I cannot say I enjoyed the suffering, I am thankful for the growth that came as a result of the Winter Storms.
    ~~ Anne B., a tool in HIs Hands


    • Brian Casey 06/29/2015 / 9:31 am

      Let’s just say, for now, that I would not care to make my permanent abode in Antarctica. This morning, before seeing your comment, I was selecting excerpts from chapter 1 of this book and thinking through more….


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