Saviors of God by Nikos Kazantzakis

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Synopsis

As a writer and philosopher, Nikos Kazantzakis struggled all his life with existential questions, once spending several months in a monastery in an attempt to attain a closer relationship with God. His relentless quest to understand the nature of life through travel, extensive reading, and constant conversation with a diverse array of compatriots ultimately led Kazantzakis to compose this book of "spiritual exercises" meant to help the reader achieve harmony between the countervailing human impulses toward an immortality-seeking asceticism and toward a more nihilistic and materialist view of death. As with all Kazantzakis’s philosophical works, The Saviors of God sheds light on a mind uniquely suited to a nuanced examination of what it means to be human, and establishes a hopeful vision for a dazzlingly syncretic approach to spiritual life.
 

About Nikos Kazantzakis

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This distinguished novelist, poet, and translator was born in Crete and educated in Athens, Germany, Italy, and Paris, where he studied philosophy. He found time to write some 30 novels, plays, and books on philosophy, to serve his government, and to travel widely. He ran the Greek ministry of welfare from 1919 to 1921 and was minister of state briefly in 1945. A political activist, he spent his last years in France and died in Germany. Kazantzakis's character Zorba has been called "one of the great characters of modern fiction," in a novel that "reflects Greek exhilaration at its best" (TLS). A film version of 1965, starring Anthony Quinn, made Kazantzakis widely known in the West. Intensely religious, he imbued his novels with the passion of his own restless spirit, "torn between the active and the contemplative, between the sensual and the aesthetic, between nihilism and commitment" (Columbia Encyclopedia). Judas, the hero of The Last Temptation of Christ (1951) is asked by Christ to betray him so that he can fulfill his mission through the crucifixion. For this book Kazantzakis was excommunicated from the Greek Orthodox Church. The Fratricides, Kazantzakis's last novel, portrays yet another religious hero, a priest caught between Communists and Royalists in the Greek Civil War.
 
Published September 4, 2012 by Simon & Schuster. 143 pages
Genres: Religion & Spirituality, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

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