"At its heart," Frederick Buechner once wrote, "most theology, like most fiction, is essentially autobiography." That is true of this book in a very explicit way. Rita Gross and Rosemary Radford Ruether have long been known for their feminist contributions to Buddhism and Christianity, respectively. In this book, they talk candidly about what their respective traditions mean to them in both their liberating as well as problematic aspects. Throughout the book, their lifestories provide the rich soil, perhaps even the rationale, for their theological and spiritual development. Born in a nonvirtual log cabin to a struggling Christian fundamentalist farm family, Rita was excommunicated by her church at an early age. She eventually made a long journey to Buddhism after a detour through Judaism. Rosemary was born in comfortable circumstance and raised an "enlightened" Roman Catholic in a family that had Jewish and Protestant connections. She would always rather fight (for enlightened Catholicism) than switch. Despite the marked differences in their life histories and their respective religious faiths, Rita and Rosemary achieve surprising unanimity on the paramount issue: what engaged Buddhism and what enlightened Christianity can offer in the struggle to create a new future for planet earth.
About Rita M. Gross
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Published April 15, 2001
by Bloomsbury Academic.
Religion & Spirituality.