In Search of the Spirit

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In this classical primer on the spiritual life, Mary McDermott Shideler writes for those just beginning to experience the stirrings of the spirit and to ask the most elementary questions, How should I pray? What should I pray? What is prayer? In her guide to the basics of spiritual development, Shideler leads us with shrewd psychological insight from the early steps of spiritual awakening to mature understanding and commitment to whatever tradition in which we find ourselves. Drawing on the insights of writers like CS Lewis, Kierkegaard, Charles Williams, and GK Chesterton, this eloquent work describes life in the spirit with vivid stories and examples and without formal terminology. Mary Shideler's call to see ourselves as living under the aspect of the eternal, to awaken that Spirit within, is itself sounded from a deep commitment and practice. Applicable to beginners of many different traditions and backgrounds, she is also clear that at some time the novitiate must end and that a deeper commitment will be necessary. Perhaps her observation, Thou shalt not be overcome, will be one that will prompt many to begin their own spiritual journey. --Henri Nouwen