Do you have a real relationship with God, or do you just have a religion? Do you know God, or do you just know about God? In How Big Is Your God? Paul Coutinho, SJ, challenges us to grow stronger and deeper in our faith and in our relationship with God - a God whose love knows no bounds. To help us on our way, Coutinho introduces us to people in various world religions - from Hindu friends to Buddhist teachers to St. Ignatius of Loyola - who have shaped his spiritual life and made possible his deep, personal relationship with God.
Paul Coutinho, SJ, divides his time between India and the United States. He currently conducts an international ministry of speaking, retreat work, and spiritual direction from a base at St. Louis University, where he received his doctorate in historical theology. He is the author of How Big Is Your God?
Coutinho, a Jesuit priest who has lived much of his life in India, once was told by a theology teacher at an American university that he was a heretic. He had merely posed a "what if," asking what the man would do if scripture scholars should determine that Jesus never existed as a historical figure. The teacher said he would have to abandon his work as a priest because he could never base his life on a myth, but Coutinho countered that he would still die for the myth. Conversant with India's Hindu and Buddhist traditions, Coutinho effectively uses this story to illustrate the differences between the Western and Eastern understandings of truth (one, he writes, sees truth as a set of beliefs while the other views it as an experience). Throughout this volume of short essays, Coutinho draws on Eastern religious traditions, blending them with his own Catholic practice to challenge and deepen readers' understandings of God. Besides asking questions like "Can you be religious without knowing God?" and "Are you running for fun or for your life?" he offers practical advice as well, including a PQR (Pause Question Respond) formula for handling difficult situations and BAD (Basement Attic Disposal) days for helping Westerners get rid of consuming possessions. Readers who favor "spirituality" over religion will most enjoy this book. (Oct.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
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