Having grace is having it all come together

December 1, 2008 by  
Filed under Reading Space

“Gracefulness has been defined to be the outward expression of the inward harmony of the soul”

– William Hazlitt

Becoming the Goddess of Inner Poise – Donna Freitas

The first book to extend the Chick Lit genre in an entirely new direction – spirituality. Bridget Jones’s Diary took the world by storm because a generation of smart, educated, career-oriented women saw their own lives reflected in the quirky, lovable, and clever Bridget who journaled obsessively about her career, her love
life, and her calorie intake. But spirituality books have had little to say to the Bridget Jones crowd until now.

Author Donna Freitas has her finger on the pulse of the spiritual issues that most concern today’s young women. Becoming a Goddess of Inner Poise explores eleven themes (career, love, body-image, biological clock, and beyond) that parallel most women’s spiritual journeys. Using the experiences of Bridget Jones and other popular heroines from books, movies, and TV, Freitas illustrates how our life choices can have a profoundly spiritual dimension, giving young women a new model for their spiritual journey, rooted in self-awareness, forgiveness, grace, prayer and uniquely a dash of humor.

Donna Freitas (Vermont) is Professor of Spirituality at St. Michael’s College in Colchester, Vermont, and the owner of an enviable shoe collection. Her research and speaking center on pop culture and women’s spirituality.

Power, Freedom and Grace – Deepak Chopra

In ‘Power, Freedom and Grace’, Deepak Chopra considers the mystery of our existence and its significance in our eternal quest for happiness. Who am I? Where did I come from? Where do I go when I die? Chopra draws upon the ancient philosophy of Vedanta and the findings of modern science to help us understand and experience our true nature. When we understand our true nature, we begin to live from the source of lasting happiness, which is not mere happiness for his or that reason, but true inner joy.

By knowing who we are, we no longer interfere with the innate intelligence of the cosmos. Instead, we allow the universe to flow through us with effortless ease, and our lives are infused with power, freedom and grace.

Grace After Midnight – Felicia Pearson & David Ritz

While Felicia Pearson is a brilliant actor in a truly chilling role, what’s most remarkable about ‘Snoop’ is what she has overcome in real life. Born a three-pound, cross-eyed crack baby in East Baltimore and raised in a foster home, Snoop proved she was as tough as the streets.

Showing an early aptitude for drug slinging and violence, she thrived as a baby gangsta until she landed in Jessup State Penitentiary after killing a woman in self-defence. There she rebelled violently against the system and it would take the news of the murder of her childhood mentor, a local drug-dealer called Uncle Loney, for her to decide to turn her life around.

Then, after being discovered in a nightclub by one of The Wire’s cast members and recruited to the show, fiction began tio mirror life as ‘snoop, drawing on the tribulations of her past, created one of television’s most frightening and intriguing villains.

Grace – Robert Drewe

Some relevant facts about Grace Malloy. Apart from being named after a 100 000-year-old skeleton, she was twenty-nine and for much of the past three years she’d been hiding from an erotomaniac. Physically and emotionally besieged, Grace attempts to claw back from her personal territory by abandoning her inner-city life as a film reviewer and fleeing to the remoteness of the Kimberley – where existence and territory have altogether wider implications.

Lying low, working in a wildlife park, she slowly reclaims her sanity. Her only links to the outside world are her father and her stalker. Intricately plotted, breathlessly paced, Grace reflects on the countless varieties of love and the nature of fear. At once intimate and grand in scale, this disquieting and provocatively witty novel reveals the full vigour of an artistic vision in turn poetic and cinematic.

(Queensland Premier’s Literary Award 2006 – Fiction/Shortlist)

Everyday Grace : Having Hope, Finding Forgiveness and Making Miracles – Marianne Williamson

In this companion to A Return to Love Marianne Williamson returns to her spiritual roots, writing on the art of nurturing a thriving soul in a harsh world. What do your spiritual convictions have to do with traffic jams, job anxiety, reading the newspaper, or arguing with your spouse? Everything, according to Marianne Williamson.

It is the way we live in our everyday world that determines the shape of who we are. So Buddhist or Muslim, Christian or Jew, it is the moment when your child fails an exam, when your best friend lands your dream job, or your business instinct tells you to watch your back, that tests and builds our living faith.

With an attitude of hope, a call to forgive, a celebration of miracles, and the promise of strength and grace, Williamson aims to help us find our sacred footing on ordinary ground. No matter where we are or what we’re doing, no matter what difficulties we face, there is always an opportunity to be happy, to connect with the spiritual – and to open our hearts and our minds.

In Everyday Grace: Having Hope, Finding Forgiveness and Making Miracles, Marianne Williamson teaches us to ride the currents of life and to seek out the sacred that will bring forth a sea change of the soul.

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