The Irrational Season    -     By: Madeleine L'Engle
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The Irrational Season

HarperOne / 1979 / Paperback

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  • Others Also Purchased (15)
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Product Description

(PUBHarperSanFrancisco)"The liturgical seasons provide the backdrop to L'Engle's reflections on her writing, her friendships, her memories, her views on history, art, theater, prayer, etc., transforming this rambling conversation into a testimony to faith and life's abiding goodness,"---Commonweal. 224 pages, softcover.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Vendor: HarperOne
Publication Date: 1979
Dimensions: 8 X 5 1/4 (inches)
ISBN: 0866839461
ISBN-13: 9780866839464
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

This journal follows the church year from Advent to Advent, reflecting on its seasons and spiritual rhythms reflected in the life of the church and the author's own life.

Author Bio

Madeline L'Engle, the popular author of many books for children and adults, has interspersed her writing and teaching career with raising three children, maintaining an apartment in New York and a farmhouse of charming confusion which is called "Crosswicks."

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  1. Warren, Maine
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Battlefields, Slums, and Insane Asylums
    January 8, 2016
    Michele Morin
    Warren, Maine
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I cannot abide bouillon in a mug, but Im always a little sorry about that when I read the opening pages of Madeleine LEngles The Irrational Season. She sips from her warm cup, gazes out her two a.m. window at the Hudson River, and begins an Advent reflection that meanders through the liturgical year and the seasons of her life, ending up at her country farmhouse just in time for the Michaelmas daisies.

    Although she passed away in 2007 and the four volumes of The Crosswicks Journal series (The Irrational Season is number three) were published in the 1970s, Madeleines musings are timeless. I find myself needing to reread them every so often just to be reminded that there are juicy words like anamnesis and eschaton and pusillanimous and that one could refer to a houseful of neighborhood kids as a charm of children. I turn and return to Madeleine LEngle because her thoughts remind me that there is a Truth that can be expressed in poetry as well as in memoir and that manages to be both orthodox and startling.

    On the subject of God the Creator of a world that now includes battlefields and slums and insane asylums Madeleine expresses both puzzlement and awe. Why does God treat in such a peculiar way the creatures He loves so much that He sent His own Son to them? Even so, she affirms that a no from God is often a prelude to a better yes, and that the only God who seems to be worth believing in is impossible for mortal man to understand.

    Perhaps, as a story teller herself, she realized that her own life was His to plot.

    On marriage and parenting, Madeleine was a delightful mixture of progressive and traditional thought: A marriage is something which has to be created. When we were married, Hugh and I became a new entity, he as much as I. She was a militant advocate for breastfeeding in an era in which it was considered backward, while at the same time setting boundaries in her home that protected her ability to continue with her writing.

    Her faith was subject to attacks of atheism, but she also maintained that anger [at God] is an affirmation of faith. You cannot get angry at someone who is not there. Her writing informed her theology, and her theology informed her writing to the point where she gave her stories credit for converting her back to Christianity. Her portrayals of the incarnation are both homely and profound, exulting in the Word made flesh with each of her newborn babies and the touch of her husbands warm foot under the blankets.

    Madeleine LEngle was at her best when she was describing the writing process and the relationship between a writer and her work. She attributed her success as a writer to her suffering and her unusual childhood, saying that her best writing has been born of pain. She saw little difference between praying and writing, and humbly attempted to listen to the book as she listened in prayer. Her advice to aspiring writers came from her own standard practice: I read as much as possible, write every day, keep my vocabulary alive and changing, so that I will have an instrument on which to play the book if it does me the honor of coming to me and asking to be written.

    The Irrational Season is only one of the fifty books that came to Madeleine asking to be served.
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