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By David J. Leigh

Circuitous trips: smooth non secular Autobiography presents a detailed examining and research of ten significant lifestyles tales via twentieth-century leaders and thinkers from quite a few non secular and cultural traditions: Mohandas Gandhi, Black Elk, Thomas Merton, Dorothy Day, C. S. Lewis, Malcolm X, Paul Cowan, Rigoberta Menchu, Dan Wakefield, and Nelson Mandela. The e-book makes use of ways from literary feedback, developmental psychology (influenced via Erik Erikson, James Fowler, and Carol Gilligan), and spirituality (influenced by way of John S. Donne, Emile Griffin, Walter Conn, and Bernard Lonergan). each one textual content is learn within the mild of the autobiographical culture began by way of St. Augustine's Confessions, yet with a spotlight on distinctively glossy and post-modern variations of the self-writing style. The twentieth-century context of spiritual alienation, social autonomy, identification crises and politics, and the quest for social justice is tested in every one textual content.

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Extra resources for Circuitous Journeys: Modern Spiritual Autobiography

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Free by nature, in the image of God, I was nevertheless the prisoner of my own violence and my own selfishness, in the image of the world into which I was born. (3) The realistic details of the periodic first sentence express his birth as an empirical fact on the level of human history on a wide temporal, astrological, and geographicscreen (“nature”),The second sentence interprets these facts from his later theologcal standpoint as a Catholic convert and monk-as one created free and good in the divineimage but prone tosin in the image of the fallen world (“grace”).

Once again, the combination of battle andjourney appears in the imagery of the first two titles in Part Three, “Magnetic North’’ and “True North”; whereas the last two titles point to places of tension and its release: “The Sleeping Volcano” of Harlem and“The Sweet Savorof Liberty” of Gethsemani (the lattera place of inner battle for Christ on his journey to death and resurrection). What the chapter titles do not indicate, however, is the coinplexity of narrative patterns in the overall autobiography.

The context of democratic autonomy since the eighteenth century has also left the seeker with a gap between the self and any social authorization of the search, as in the case of Day or Merton having to leave their families, cities, and class to find for themselves any ultimate meaning. The context of the individual search for a true sense of the deep self, which I have called with Dunne the problem of self-appropriation, has driven many searchers to try on a number of masks or identities, thus causing gaps within the unity of the psyche-for instance, in the inconsistencies among the short-lived negative identities of the young Malcolm X or Dan Wakefield.

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