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Dr. L. Murgatroyd (London, UK)

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Seeding the Spirit: The Appleseed Workbook
Seeding the Spirit: The Appleseed Workbook
by Chris Cook
Edition: Spiral-bound

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational and practical, 14 Mar 2011
Chris Cook and Brenda Heales have developed their own way of using 'kindergaden-simple' creative activities for people to respond 'in the spirit', to explore big issues in life and religion. They call this the 'Appleseed' process - a process of seeding and nurturing new spiritual growth, rooted in the life and teachings of 'Jesus Christ, the Apple Tree'.

This book, based on their many years of workshop facilitation and teaching, is written for individuals and groups to use. It includes introductions to various themes (e.g. facing fears and difficulties, spiritual journeys, meditation, the writings of Julian of Norwich and Meister Eckhart) and over 2 dozen 'response activities' each with step by step instructions, list of materials, and other guidance and suggestions.
It is a beautifully written book, inspiring and enabling, which can be used in many different ways.
Cook and Heales are Quakers, and write from a perspective which is both deeply rooted in Christianity and emphasises the centrality of each person's personal experience, as their own path towards God. The book was written with a Quaker audience in mind but people from many other religious backgrounds (or of no religion) have also found it of great value, both personally and for use in a community or group setting.
The book is published by Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre in Birmingham, and if not available from Amazon can be obtained directly from Woodbrooke.

Earth Shattering: ecopoems
Earth Shattering: ecopoems
by Neil Astley
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.26

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Boundless poetry, 15 Dec 2008
A fabulous collection. Inspirational, challenging, compassionate and profound. The poems evoke a variety of natural beauty, wonder at how nature works and terrible thing that have been done to parts of the world.

As well as being deeply nurturing, the poetry in this collection has stirred me to deep questions about my own relation to the natural world, as well as to creative responses. I hope it is widely read and enjoyed.

A Book of Silence
A Book of Silence
by Sara Maitland
Edition: Hardcover

164 of 170 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book about silences, 15 Dec 2008
This review is from: A Book of Silence (Hardcover)
This is a riveting and quirky book, beautifully written, entertaining and profound. Impossible to classify, it is part travelogue, part witty and devastatingly open autobiography, part review of the experiences of silence of people as diverse as early Christian desert hermits, 20th century yachtspeople and Buddhists.
Mid-life, Maitland chose to place silence at the centre of her life and she explores what this might mean for her in late 20th Century Britain. She addresses challenging issues, such as the fear of what might happen in silence, and practical issues such as earning her keep.
To my mind, she doesn't always get it quite right - her fascinating discussion of voice hearing that sometimes happens in silence does not distinguish between hearing 'inner voices' of guidance and 'outer voices' made by the wind , for example. Her description of silent Quaker worship doesn't quite grasp that this is a listening silence, in which the worshippers' active 'listening towards God' is more important than any spoken word. But these are small points in a huge work, and I would thoroughly recommend this book as a good read for practitioners of silence and others alike.
Maitland articulates beautifully much that is not spoken of in our society , including the importance for everyone of having enough silence in our lives. The book is is not an invitation to silence as such, but offers insights and many possible paths for readers to follow. I can think of several very different people for whom it would be a great present!

Why Women Mean Business: Understanding the Emergence of our Next Economic Revolution
Why Women Mean Business: Understanding the Emergence of our Next Economic Revolution
by Avivah Wittenberg-Cox
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 15.56

5.0 out of 5 stars Looking at he whole picture at last!, 29 Feb 2008
This book should be compulsory reading for MBAs and Chief Execs' alike.

At last this book looks at the 'the whole picture' of the world of business. Since Adam Smith's day, economics have been bases on assumptions about humans that are really about archetypal male behaviour. In the 1970s women started challenging and rewriting 'malestream' sociology, in the 1980s the way jobs were classified in government statistics were reviewed to take account of a lot of the gender blindness there had been. And of course there have been lots of books about women ... but this one brings the whole together in a very clear way.
Maitland and Wittenberg-Cox state the obvious, once you've read it. But many decision-makers (like many academics) are so used to seeing the world from their own point of view that they haven't been able to see the obvious.

This book is full of pity anecdotes to illustrate their points, and also useful bullet points for those wanting to take action to change things. So it's a good read and a useful tool, and not actually difficult or demanding. It's the next steps that may be more challenging.

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