Religion and Spirituality

By Eliot Deutsch

Subjects: Religion
Paperback : 9780791424582, 151 pages, July 1995
Hardcover : 9780791424575, 151 pages, July 1995

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Table of contents


Part 1. A Phenomenology of Spirituality

Spiritual Passivity
Divine Love

Part 2. Tales and Plays

The Church
The Director
The End

Part 3. Dialogues, Monologues, and Discussions

On the Dark Night of the Soul
Questions Not Tending toward Edification
Freudian Parenthood
Modes of Being
Religious Psychology
Enemies, Impediments, and Distractions
On Moral and Religious Love
The Ironic Gaze
On Images of Gods and Goddesses

Part 4. Letters

To a Colleague: On Religion and Good Taste
To a Former Student: On Creation
To an Anthropologist: On Truth and Archaic Religion
To a Visitor: On Religion and Humor
To a Layman: Animadversions on Natural Theology
To a Concerned Scholar: On Religion and Morality

Part 5. Definitions and Poems

Three Women in Religious Art
They Call It a Home
Memory and Time


Through the skillful use of a great variety of literary genres, this book explores the intimate relation and tension between religion and spirituality, evoking a wide range of responses that may awaken one to various possibilities of spiritual experience.

Eliot Deutsch is Professor of Philosophy and Chair of Graduate Studies in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Hawaii, Manoa. He is past editor of Philosophy East and West, past president of the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy, and the author of ten other books.


"This is a remarkable book, superb in its mastery of a variety of genres. My first reading was in one sitting.

"Obviously the outcome of many years of personal spiritual process and probing intellectual reflection in implicit dialogue with a vast range of philosophical and religious thought, this book explores difficult, subtle, and complex issues within spirituality, within religion, and within their mutual interactions.

"The author's exploration is enhanced by his skillful use of a great variety of literary genres that help the reader to gain access to these issues through many different 'doors. ' Profound insights are expressed with unusual lucidity. " -- Donald Evans, University of Toronto

"Deutsch's book is remarkable in the way it combines different forms of writing and gives expression to different voices in exploring the interplay of religion and spirituality. The book weaves together philosophical and cross-cultural reflections and a variety of forms of literary composition. The many voices that speak reveal to the reader how complex, profound, deranged, earnest, playful, judgmental, loving, blind, enlightened, and redemptive religion and spirituality, in their interconnection, can be.

"I read the book straight through in a single sitting. It is rich and fascinating reading. I now want to go back and explore the individual pieces in greater depth. The book is extraordinary. " -- Michael Washburn, Indiana University at South Bend