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Everything Is Spiritual: Finding Your Way in a Turbulent World

(7 customer reviews)


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SKU: B0867R7P5J Category:


From the Publisher

Everything Is Spiritual Rob Bell
Everything Is Spiritual Rob Bell
Everything Is Spiritual Rob Bell
Everything Is Spiritual Rob Bell

Additional information


‎ B0867R7P5J

Publisher ‏

‎ St. Martin's Essentials (September 15, 2020)

Publication date ‏

‎ September 15, 2020

Language ‏

‎ English

File size ‏

‎ 3005 KB

Text-to-Speech ‏

‎ Enabled

Screen Reader ‏

‎ Supported

Enhanced typesetting ‏

‎ Enabled

X-Ray ‏

‎ Enabled

Word Wise ‏

‎ Enabled

Sticky notes ‏

‎ On Kindle Scribe

Print length ‏

‎ 314 pages

7 reviews for Everything Is Spiritual: Finding Your Way in a Turbulent World

  1. JPL

    Bell’s most personal book yet, and a change of tone…I have read all of Bell’s non-fictional works, followed his podcast “The RobCast” from the beginning, and had the pleasure of meeting him in person during one of his full-day small-group seminars. I pre-ordered his new work in hardcover and received it on launch day. It is fair to say I am a big fan who comes into this with high expectations.For the most part, “Everything is Spiritual” meets those expectations quite well. In many ways as much autobiography as it is rhetorical non-fiction, Bell shares some of the more intimate details of his backstory and family history in this effort, using these tales to bookend the work. He also shares details of the long and winding path his professional life has taken from his first barefoot sermon to the present day.Winding in and out through these autobiographical pieces is an exploration of many of his classic themes: the interconnectedness of all things and people, the seamless unity of what we often divide into the “sacred” and the “secular”, and the profound difficulties experienced by people living in the mightiest empire the world has ever seen in addressing (or even perceiving) the counter-cultural, topsy-turvy message born from the words of slaves, the poor, and the “losers” of the ancient Hebrew and Greek worlds.He does all this with his abundant wit, grace, and emotional intelligence on full display. As with many of his works, the prose is spaced almost like poetry, with abundant use of white space and numerous short, clear, declarative sentences, including plenty of his trademark leading questions. Oddly, the book lacks both chapters and a table of contents. It’s one long slalom ride to the end.As someone who truly struggles to identify as Christian in modern American society, exactly because of what that word has come to mean in most people’s minds, I found this quote from the work particularly telling:“I often thought of walking away from the whole thing.That was tempting.Stop giving teachings about Jesus, stop reading the Bible,stop pretending like there was any good left in that tradition.But I couldn’t.There’s too much truth, too much power, too muchwisdom in this ancient movement to walk away from itjust because the American religious/military/machine hadlost its way.I didn’t have to walk away from what has shaped and vitalized my life in a thousand ways because somebody somewhere bastardized and blasphemed it.I could double down on it.”You can feel his struggle with the whole thing in this work. And that struggle becomes more evident if you can see behind the scenes. The distinctive feel and terminology of Ken Wilber’s Integral Theory (of which Bell is a noted fan) can be found throughout, and this seems to be the source of the back cover’s blurb noting the book “updates Teilhard de Chardin’s Catholic mysticism”. Neither Wilber nor de Chardin are name-checked in the book, but if you know their works you’ll see the clear influence here. Whether you think that’s a good thing or not will depend a lot on the species of Christianity you espouse, and your comfort with ideas normally far on the edge for anyone viewing themselves as evangelical by modern American standards.Overall, it’s a fine work, well worth reading, and I devoured it speedily.If it has a weakness, it’s that for old Rob Bell fans it doesn’t offer a lot that’s new. Most of his autobiography is well known to fans – at least from his early beginning teaching water skiing and getting “the call” to his first lakeside preaching session. His earlier book “God Wants To Save Christians” is a much deeper dive into the social justice issues surrounding the church’s investment in the American military-industrial complex. And the explorations into quantum physics and the like were well-addressed in his original “Everything is Spiritual” tour in the mid-2000s. Thus, to this fan, this book felt ironically like a lot of Ken Wilber’s later works – summaries, recaps, and recapitulations of earlier ideas, presented from a slightly different angle, with a slightly different spin.The ancient rabbis described the Torah as being like a gem with many facets, noting it could be turned this way and that while revealing new truths and beauty from each new angle. (Thanks to Rob, for that anecdote.) If you can appreciate Bell’s work in a similar manner, then this mature exposition of Rob’s work is probably for you. If you are a veteran hoping for the thrill of novel, paradigm-shaking insights, you might be a tad disappointed. But for those new to his work, it’s a warmly personal introduction to many of his most important ideas.

  2. ARHuelsenbeck

    Everything Is Spiritual gave me a lot to think about.For the past year or so, I’ve been studying the Bible with a group who call themselves the Old Heretics. They’ve pushed me out of my comfort zone and forced me to reevaluate my beliefs. When the pandemic started, our church closed, and Bible study ended for a while. Then we started meeting on Zoom. The group has been a lifeline for me.Rob Bell is a popular spiritual teacher and the author of eleven books. In 1999, he started Mars Hill Church in Grand Rapids in Michigan, which blossomed into a megachurch, and he left it in 2011 to literally take his show on the road. He’s been denounced by conservative Christians as a heretic, but his ideas resonate with truth seekers and with Christians who have become disenchanted with church. When Everything is Spiritual was released this past September, my Bible study group decided to read it together.Bell studies quantum physics for fun, and has gathered insight about how things in the universe work. To oversimplify it (and probably not do it the justice it deserves—read the book for the real deal), he believes everything in the universe—particles, atoms, ecosystems, people—are made to exist in relationship to every other thing. Everything is interconnected; everything is spiritual.The book has an unusual structure. Or, maybe it would be more accurate to say that there isn’t one. It’s not divided into chapters. It’s not even divided into paragraphs, exactly. Often it’s formatted more like poetry. That actually makes sense, doesn’t it? Poetry gives words added dimension, additional layers of meaning. It’s like the whole book is rendered in stream of consciousness, and we are witnessing the insights Bell is discovering in real time. There’s some repetition of ideas, and some doubling back and reexamining.Here’s a tiny excerpt about the role of a pastor:”I came from a world where the job of the spiritual leader was to have the last word on things. To explain it. To tell people what it means. To teach people how to do it.”I was coming to see that my job was to have the first word. To start the discussion. To set the words in motion, so that they could do that mysterious thing they do in all of us.”For me, the first half of the book was exciting as I was bombarded with many of these ideas for the first time. I can’t say I share Bell’s fondness for quantum physics though, and I eventually got bored. The book is 307 pages long, but I really think he could have tightened it down to 200 or 250 coherent pages.That said, he gave me a lot to mull over and process. I’m not sure I believe everything in this book, but I look forward to reading some of his other titles as well.

  3. felicity thomas

    great readThis book drew me in after a few pages , I kept thinking I will just read a few more pages. It is written in a unique way , no chapters just a flow of words but I found this positive. Interesting and thought provoking read.

  4. Amazon Customer

    curate’s eggPart biography, part extended riff. The biography feels like it’s from the heart. It’s involving and moving. The riff part feels superficial, partly digested, and a little self-serving. It *is* all spiritual. But this book is too keen to get to the wonder and awe and not dwell on the pain and struggle. That shouldn’t be turned into a story with a moral quite so easily.

  5. K. D. Booles

    a reflective textgreat book for this time

  6. mr andrew j budd

    It touched meI suggest you read it and thank me later ;-)It is a book of remarkable scope, vision and kindness…

  7. Steve Woodford

    Highly recommendedRob Bell back to his very best.

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