Book Review -- The Way of the Heart


By Way of the Heart: Toward a Holistic Christian Spirituality

43 used & new from $2.99

by Wilkie Au

Well-intentioned, but deadly dull, December 26, 2006
It kills me to rate this book so low. It says many of the right things about Christianity and the soul's longng for God. It describes the pitfalls of the pharasaic life and the idiocy of striving for God's love via acts of good behavior. It speaks of the need to balance community and solitude, ministry and leisure, and self-esteem and self-denial.

But it is so boring! One third of the way into it, I had lost interest. There are so few anecdotes, so much lecturing and abstraction! It is Christianity as a Zen discipline. Maybe I am just too lazy for that, maybe too shallow. But this was just not for me. Too bad, because Christians (Catholics foremost among them) are besieged by voices pulling them toward the very forms of idolatry that Jesus decried. Be it scriptural literalism, papal authoritarianism, anti-scientism, cults of personality or religion-cum-nationalism, our churches are sliding into the chasm of irrelevance and superstition.

Wilkie's heart is in the right place. Perhaps this book would attract those who enjoy Eastern thought. Sadly, it didn't do much for me.