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Lions Roar : November 2018
REVIEWS WHY RELIGION? A Personal Story By Elaine Pagels Ecco 2018; 240 pp., $27.99 (cloth) A renowned academic and best- selling religion author, Elaine Pagels grew up in an aloof, scientifically-minded family. Then, when she was fifteen years old, she tagged along with some friends to hear Billy Graham preach. She was so astounded by his passion that she converted, secretly thrilled to rebel against her parents. Since then her faith has ebbed and flowed, but she still remains, as she puts it, “incorrigibly religious.” In Why Reli- gion? Pagels unpacks the relevance of religion in the twenty-first century—how religious traditions continue to shape the way we understand ourselves and the world and provide a framework for facing our most painful losses. Indeed, Pagels has been heav- ily informed by her own experience of loss—first the death of her sick young son and then, just a year later, the sudden death of her husband. “Hearts do heal,” says Pagels, “through what I can only call grace.” BIOGRAPHY OF SILENCE By Pablo d’Ors, translated by David Shook Parallax Press 2018; 112 pp., $14.95 (cloth) A beloved author in Spain, Pablo d’Ors is a Catholic priest who’s been profoundly impacted by Zen practice. Since his youth, d’Ors has been driven to understand his own nature— an inclination, he claims, that can lead to self-centeredness. However, he learned that self-centeredness is mitigated by the paradoxical path of meditation. When d’Ors began meditating, it was immediately clear, he says, “that this sitting without doing anything was something as foreign to my education and experi- ence as, contradictory as it seems, it was equally innate to who I was at my core.” Biography of Silence is a poetic yet baldly hon- est account of what it means to persevere with meditation. In the end, d’Ors recognizes that he doesn’t really know what life is, but he’s determined to live it—to be intensely engaged with the sublime beauty of each ordinary moment. By Andrea Miller MARCIA WEESE RUGS Hand-carded, hand-spun and hand-knotted by Tibetan refugee women in Nepal. TRADITIONALLY WOVEN TO LAST LIFETIMES Using 100% Tibetan wool and silk, and traditional techniques that preserve a history and culture, Weese’s contemporary rugs bring elegance to your floors A percentage of proceeds is donated to The International Campaign for Tibet weeserugs.com 773.908.9009 LION’S ROAR | NOVEMBER 2018 77