Living Peace: A Spirituality of Contemplation and Action
By John Dear
“John Dear’s inspired journey – inside and out – gives us renewed hope for our own personal and public peacemaking. Living Peace is a beautiful reminder of our sacred identity.”
– Fred Rogers – Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood
For John Dear the spiritual life is a combination of contemplation and action, of maintaining inner peace and projecting that peace into the greater world. It is the spirituality exemplified by the lives of Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mother Teresa, the Dalai Lama, and others throughout history who remained true to the highest ideals while addressing the most difficult problems and conflicts of the real world.
As a tireless advocate for social justice and human rights, Dear has followed that path in his own life, and in Living Peace he describes his journey. Breaking down the life of peace into three parts an inner journey, a public journey, and the journey of all humanity he shares the spiritual practices that have sustained him and teaches readers how to integrate these practices into their own lives.
“Living Peace is a deeply moving and profoundly inspiring account of John Dear’s journey of enviable courage, boundless faith, unquestioned hope, and unconditional love.”
Living Peace: A Spirituality of Contemplation and Action is a spiritual handbook for readers who seek to make peace in their lives and in the world. The journey to peace, as Dear describes it, is composed of an Inner Journey (involving solitude, silence, prayer, and mindfulness), and a Public Journey (involving direct political action), which, undertaken together, make possible reconciliation and transformation on a global level. “If we try, and keep trying, and stay faithful to the journey unto our last breath, we will find great joy and a peace not of this world, knowing that we serve not only the human family but the God of peace.” Dear’s book includes historical anecdotes and concise descriptions of particular challenges facing American readers today (“If we want to live in peace, we must learn to love the people of Iraq.”), but his descriptions of spiritual exercises, particularly his own morning devotions, may be the most compelling parts of Living Peace. –Michael Joseph Gross