Conversations with Meister Eckhart is an imagined conversation with this 13th-century mystic, around such themes as detachment, which he famously placed above love; spirituality; God; the soul; and suffering. But while the conversation is imagined, Eckhart's words are not; they are authentically his own.
"Great performance with an even greater message"
Who was Jesus of Nazareth? Many admire his spiritual teachings; some go further and claim him as the messiah, while a few deny he ever existed at all. But everyone has an opinion about this obscure preacher who lived his brief life in one of the less significant regions of the Roman Empire; and who, in being crucified, died the traditional death for criminals and trouble-makers. Jesus lived in turbulent times. Under Roman rule, Judea was a hotbed of nationalist, political and religious interests, all vying for power.
When most think of Tolstoy, they think of the great author. For his last 30 years, however, Tolstoy walked a different track. In Conversations with Leo Tolstoy, Simon Parke grants us the honour of sitting with the great man, towards the end of his life, and gives us the chance to chat with him. The conversation is imagined, but not Tolstoy’s answers. This is Tolstoy is his own words, drawn from his extensive books, essays, and letters.
'Need a break from the mayhem of the modern world; or maybe from the mayhem of your inner life? Then why not give yourself permission to pause?' Such is the invitation at the heart of this book, which arises from Simon Parke's popular weekly columns of the same name in the Daily Mail, which calls them 'meditations to wake up your mind and your soul'.
"A Moment Can Mean So Much"
The idea for the book came to Simon Parke whilst on a train from Edinburgh to London. He had been leading a weekend on the Old Testament's Ten Commandments, and felt uneasy. What had struck him, was the fact that while the commandments demand that we be good, they don't tell us how to be good. 'They tell us what to do,' says Parke, 'but not how to be - and how to be is the more important of the two, as all our doing arises from our being.