Living With A Wild God

Living With A Wild God

A Nonbeliever's Search for the Truth About Everything

Book - 2014
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From the New York Times bestselling author of Nickel and Dimed comes a brave, frank, and exquisitely written memoir that will change the way you see the world.

Barbara Ehrenreich is one of the most important thinkers of our time. Educated as a scientist, she is an author, journalist, activist, and advocate for social justice. In LIVING WITH A WILD GOD, she recounts her quest-beginning in childhood-to find "the Truth" about the universe and everything else: What's really going on? Why are we here? In middle age, she rediscovered the journal she had kept during her tumultuous adolescence, which records an event so strange, so cataclysmic, that she had never, in all the intervening years, written or spoken about it to anyone. It was the kind of event that people call a "mystical experience"-and, to a steadfast atheist and rationalist, nothing less than shattering.

In LIVING WITH A WILD GOD, Ehrenreich reconstructs her childhood mission, bringing an older woman's wry and erudite perspective to a young girl's impassioned obsession with the questions that, at one point or another, torment us all. The result is both deeply personal and cosmically sweeping-a searing memoir and a profound reflection on science, religion, and the human condition. With her signature combination of intellectual rigor and uninhibited imagination, Ehrenreich offers a true literary achievement-a work that has the power not only to entertain but amaze.
Publisher: New York : Twelve, 2014.
Edition: 1st ed. --
ISBN: 9781455501762
145550176X
Characteristics: xiv, 237 p.

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AL_RACHEL Nov 17, 2017

An intellect's interaction with the spiritual realm. She describes phenomena with great detail that many have difficulty finding the words for at all. Though a Christian myself, I appreciated her perspective on God.

d
dewwell
Sep 27, 2017

The author seemed like a remarkable young woman, super smart, but her mystical experiences were merely "meh." Too many intelligent people abandon reason when it comes to the metaphysical...that's not the road to truth.

I found the whole book good enough to read, and the author's conclusions sappy enough to be worth forgetting.

a
AHylaEHoldorf
Feb 04, 2017

The author's search, as a youth, for what's real behind appearances returns in her later years with the gravity the question merits, and with enchanting, enlightening and touching effect. Ehrenreich's book made me laugh and moved me deeply. Our senses may not be sufficient to understand the forces of nature that rule the cosmos, and in that, she and I can be satisfied that what happens can't always be explained, nor can we desist from our inquiries.

d
donnewton
Mar 07, 2016

An interesting read involving a woman's struggle to deal with a repeating experience with something "other" that she cannot fully define.

h
hlam
Dec 12, 2015

I am deeply moved by how genuine a truth seeker the author is. There is no cliche in her thinking. Honesty is the word to describe her. I would like to be her friend if I get to meet her.

r
Reader4ever2day
Apr 18, 2015

I really enjoyed this book, I found it hilarious, captivating, and informative. A must read for anyone seeking after truth.

j
JudithE
Jan 31, 2015

Although I share an alma mater (Reed college) and an atheist parent with Barbara, I ended up disappointed in the book. Her transcendent-type experiences didn't strike me as very interesting. I also must confess that her early dismissal of the feelings of animals and other people, paired with her love of Descartes (whom I turned away from when I heard that he nailed a dog to the shed and then told people that the resulting screaming was just reflexes and instinct, nothing like they would feel if they were nailed to a shed) also turned me off. I found enough interesting to finish the book, but it was spotty for me, and i was hoping for more.

quagga Dec 27, 2014

A powerful book for the right reader, especially one who felt the tension between logic and faith from an early age.

l
LucasHill
Nov 02, 2014

On the one hand, this is just another memoir about the supernatural; on the other hand, at one point the author writes, "I decided to be God and be responsible for the whole thing." Most people encounter what they call God and express humble feelings about it. Not Ehrenreich. It might be individually instructive to assess one's adolescent psyche from a 40+ year remove, but is there anything generally useful to an audience here? The more interesting story comes when Ehrenreich learns how to grow from someone who lived around other people, to (presumably) someone who lives with other people

s
sawiley
Sep 18, 2014

Ehrenreich is an engaging and accessible writer providing an account of her adolescence which is intelligent, relatable, vulnerable and often humorous. I highly recommend it for women who were sheltered or religious as children, as well as women in male dominated fields. As a person who was and is all three of those things, I found the memoir impossible to put down.

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quagga Dec 30, 2014

"Mysticism often reveals a wild, amoral Other, while religion insists on conventional codes of ethics enforced by an ethical supernatural being. The obvious solution would be to admit that ethical systems are a human invention and that the Other is something else entirely."

quagga Dec 27, 2014

"I should have stayed home and read Kafka, whom I'd just discovered in a paperback bookstore and found agreeably disorienting."

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