A Fruit-Bearing Spirituality is the fruit of years of formal study in the field of spirituality combined with 70 years of life experience. The book is not about religion, theology or church, but helps the reader to learn more about the meaning of the word spirituality for today. It includes a consideration of our humanity and spirituality; our spiritual journey; transformation and growth; relationships; integrating the personal and social; how to change; the context/organization and the relationship of Spirituality with Quantum Physics.
REVIEWS & ENDORSEMENTS
Carolyn Reinhart's A Fruit-Bearing Spirituality resembles [Antonio] Spadaro's work in its conviction that new cultural developments necessitate drastic reform in Christianity's self-understanding. The book comes across as a passionate plea for a spiritual understanding rooted in human embodiment, in ecological thinking, in quantum physics and the overcoming of patterns of mutual oppression. The narrowness of denominational Christianity is to be overcome by a shard praxis, with inclusivity a watchword.
Readers of Reinhart's book trained in conventional theology and in churchy ways of doing things will probably find it exasperating in its frequent oversimplifications of the tradition, and its uncritical use of buzz words. But that is probably an unworthy response. The fact that there are intelligent and committed people who write in this way, and that they can find publishers who thinking the book will sell, says something important about how conventional Christianity is failing to communicate to at least some people of palpable good will. [The book] raises questions worth pondering. ~ Philip Endean SJ, The Way, January 2016 issue
review/reccommendation of Carolyn Reinhart's book "A Fruit Bearing Spirituality"
A much needed critical look at the emerging field of spirituality, challenging popularly circulated easy claims of the movement. A call for humanity's recognition of its own power for transformation emerging from not only self-realization but also from the individual's recognition of connection to all else. Written in deceptively plain language, there are many essential tools for understanding human nature and spirituality. Emerging from a place of compassionate knowing and a studied praxis, many aspects and qualities of our current global situation are discussed including obsolescent power structures, the effects of language on worldview, and the need for refelection and discerment. An available summary of her doctoral dissertation and a valuable document to assist in humanity's vital (re)awakening.
Rob Gill – Huntsville, Ontario
~ Rob Gill, Author
Review for ‘A Fruit-Bearing Spirituality’
In the Western world there is a longing for a deeper meaning to life; we have not found it in materialism and the promise of science has not proved adequate to make sense of uncertainty and impermanence. At the same time, religious traditions no longer seem relevant to many and even those who remain in institutional religion are floundering to find a way to put beliefs into practise in our complex modern world. Searchers for a meaningful spirituality with inadequate guidance can find themselves on a haphazard and scattered quest.
Dr. Reinhart’s book represents a distillation of her life-long, thoughtful study of this question, drawing on many references from mystics to philosophers, from scientists to theologians concerning the development of spirituality praxis, i.e. the combining of theory and practice. She weaves a cogent account of quantum theory in and out of the fabric of an authentic spirituality. When I get up in the morning, I want to be able to say, “How will my beliefs (the ‘theory’) bear fruit (the ‘practice’) today?” This is what ‘praxis’ is and ‘Fruit-Bearing Spirituality’ offers us a place to start.
Dr Pam McDermott MD CCFP Physician Therapist ~ Dr Pam McDermott
When I first started to read this book I had just returned from a week-end at Holton Lee the place where a lot of the research for this book took place, so I had an immediate resonance, using a tree as a model was especially significant with bottom up growth. This is a book for all those who are on a spiritual journey seeking an authentic relationship not only with God but also with others and our environment.
I have found this book both challenging and thought provoking, enhancing some of my own thoughts on my own spiritual journey, which has been a journey seeking genuine relationships and making sense of the hypocrisy in many of the institutions into which we are immersed. The word Praxis is used very effectively in describing the combination of theory and practice, to aspire to “talking the talk and walking the walk” Fairness, justice and peace are again in the essence of a search of spirituality.
Quantum Physics is something I don’t really understand so I have had to read this part of the book over again and digest this more slowly and I will continue to read and investigate more.
Love is a central theme of this book and I like the comment made “To love unconditionally we first need to know God’s peace at the centre of out being”
The context in which we live often shapes our response to those around us and our environment, I would like to think that my reading this book and pursuing some of the well researched theories I might begin that transformation in parts of my life that needs direction. ~ Viv Quick MBE RGN
Underlying the ongoing process and development of her concept of “Spirituality” based on theory and practice, each informing the other, Reinhart’s writing echoes her personal and heartfelt spiritual conversion to the praxis of connectedness and inclusivity. ~ Judith Baillie, Eucharistic Minister to both Parish and Hospital
A Fruit-Bearing Spirituality is a book for anyone interested in a world evolving from an earlier paradigm toward wholeness through a mode of "spiritual praxis". It is a story that effectively integrate's Reinhart's personal journey with insights from Quantum Physics. Commitment and passion characterize the determination Carolyn Reinhart brings to the urgency of our times in need of real environmental and structural change. It is a tall order but Reinhart pulls it off with humility and eloquence. ~ Marsha Skain, Author
A Fruit-Bearing Spirituality brings a harvest of insight gained from the author's deeply reflected upon experience over many years. She speaks to the increasing emergent in the current climate in which there are ever increasing concerns about the impact that technological advances are having on the planet. She also speaks to the groundswell of spirituality as opposed to religion. The voices from across many contemplative and mystical traditions from ancient times, are speaking to many today. Reinhart clearly identifies that spirituality cannot be considered only in context of the individual in isolation, but that it permeates relationships with others and the universe. She has drawn from the invaluable insights quantum physics has contributed to our understanding, for example, of the interconnectedness of things, which she describes as a web. This reminds me of the Jewish mystical tradition of the Kabala, which 'presented the image of worlds nesting within worlds......(like) a wonderfully illuminating template of the skein of relationships which connect invisible spirit with the visible fabric of this material world. “ All is one unified web of life ....... We are all participants in the life of the Cosmos, atoms in the Being and Body of God. In our essence we are one." (Baring, 2013)
It is a timely reminder and a very clear practical guide to connect with ourselves, others, our environment and the Other, the Divine, God. In Reinhart's own words, 'Spirituality must permeate the personal and the political, and animate our thought, action and imagination.' 'Spiritual development and its fruits are .......deeply interconnected, so that all we do, feel and endure has a secret effect, radiating far beyond ourselves.' ~ Julia Waterfield
Through her extensive reading in the fields of spirituality and quantum physics, Carolyn Reinhart has discovered an understanding of how, we all the people of the world, could be living more fruitful lives in harmony with one another. In her book Carolyn provides insight into the relationship between spirituality and religion, and spirituality and community, i.e. the interconnectedness between each of us and all of us in the living world, indeed between each of us and the universe. For a person like me who has only begun contemplating my own spirituality in these terms in recent years, Carolyn has provided much food for thought - and fruit for picking - on how to live one's life with integrity. ~ Julie Brushey, Past Chair, Muskoka Presbytery of The United Church of Canada
Carolyn Reinhart’s book provides the most comprehensive guide that I have seen to a practical spirituality for humanity’s current situation – a spirituality that is embodied, transformative of both individual and community, trans-doctrinal and open to all dimensions of the cosmos. To begin with, she describes the origin of her journey of discovery in a community including a Centre for Disabled People and Carers, set in an area of woods and heath-land in the course of conservation. Fromthis she draws detailed guidelines for communities of enquiry striving for this transformation. The book then analyses the different dimensions of the spiritual paradigm that is emerging, drawing on science, social theory and spiritual teaching. The hub of her conception is praxis: the work of integrating being and doing, in which theory and practice are intertwined, informing each other. Many insights emerge: that in society both the oppressor and the oppressed need to change; that spirituality is inside us, as “our life breath, the animating spirit within, without which we die”; that “the real journey takes place in the depths of our souls, in the depth of the human and cosmic journey in all its realms: psychological, social, cultural, political, economic, ecological and cosmological”. A notable feature is the extensive summaries of key points from a wide range of authors in each of the aspects of spirituality. This is an important book for understanding and engaging with contemporary spirituality. ~ Chris Clarke, Formerly Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Southampton, UK
Reinhart‘s book provides the most comprehensive guide that I have seen to a practical spirituality for humanity’s current situation … embodied, transformative of both individual and community, trans-doctrinal and open to all dimensions of the cosmos … she draws detailed guidelines for communities of enquiry striving for this transformation … analyses the different dimensions of the emerging spiritual paradigm, drawing on science, social theory and spiritual teaching. The hub of her conception is praxis: integrating being and doing …theory and practice … intertwined, informing each other. Many insights emerge: … oppressors and oppressed need to change … “the real journey takes place in the depths of our souls … psychological, social, cultural, political, economic, ecological and cosmological”... an important book for understanding and engaging with contemporary spirituality. ~ Chris Clarke, Formerly Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Southampton, UK
This book is the outcome of decades of spiritual searching and itself the fruit of a pastoral practice rooted in ecological awareness. With painful honesty and a shining integrity Carolyn Reinhart guides us through the steps of her spiritual praxis and discovery, continually encouraging us by the excitement she has experienced and shares. Many will resonate with the obstacles she has overcome – like institutional religion and theology’s attempts to downgrade spirituality, or at least to fail to recognise its crucial significance; as well as the obtuse and off-putting nature of much technical jargon associated with theology. The vision of spirituality is here one that can be embraced by many world religious traditions.
Beginning with a simple intuition that an inclusive spirituality that refuses to be privatised is the first pointer: we are then led through an eight-fold path. Highlights of this are the connecting of inner and outer dimensions, (thereby overcoming dualisms), the centrality of praxis and the desire for transformation, a transformation that embraces self and world.
The uniqueness of the journey offered here is not only that Reinhart is immersed in the insights of Quantum physics - through Dana Zohar’ work - but that she integrates these with the spiritual path, so that ideas of connectedness, mutuality, and relationships mutually reinforce each other : “ we can live our quantum relationships and spirituality together”, she asserts meaningfully. She has the humility to listen to the wisdom of many wise guides in the field, whose insights are then integrated into her own pathway. The achievement of the “fruit bearing spirituality” is to indicate to us who strive for justice and liberation, that this struggle can be an integrated part of “revolutionary mysticism” – itself part of a spirituality that continues to evolve.
~ Mary Grey, University of Winchester, UK, Visiting Professor, St Mary’s University College, Twickenham, UK
Carolyn Reinhart has produced an inspiring synthesis on the evolution of spirituality in the 21st century. Drawing on theoretical foundations of study and research, this is primarily a manual for spiritual praxis, embracing connectedness and inclusivity as primary values. A valuable and timely rersource for those exploring the emerging spirituality of our time.
~ Diarmuid O'Murchu, priest and psychologist, author of In the Beginning was the Spirit.
Fruit-bearing is an appropriate title for this book as it invites us to attend to our roots, to nurture them and bear fruit in a spirituality that is about being and doing and is personal and social.
~ David Coghlan, Trinity College Dublin. Author of Doing Action Research in Your Own Organization