The Spirituality of Imperfection
"Sometimes a reviewer wants to stop writing about a book and simply stand up and cheer...The wisest book I've read in a long time."
—Larry Dossey, M.D., author of Meaning and Medicine
"This is an inspiring guide, offering comfort not only to those in 12-step recovery programs but to those who want to stop striving for personal perfection and start living."
"A brilliant anthology of wisdom stories from all the great traditions centered around a most compelling and discerning issue."
"I think this book comes closer to the real meaning of spirituality than anything I've looked at in the last twenty years."
—John Bradshaw, author of Homecoming
"I love this book and I've been foisting it off on people for years. It's wonderful."
—Anne Lamott, author of Traveling Mercies, Plan B, and Grace (Eventually)
"This book is to spirituality as riding a rollercoaster is to physics. It is not a read; it is an experience. Kurtz and Ketcham have managed to tell their own story in such a way that the reader is invited to share in that experience. Finding this spirituality of imperfection in Alcoholics Anonymous and the twelve-step program, K&K have scoured spiritual writings throughout history to find the words to describe their experience. Boldface quotes and stories color almost every page. K&K find the essence of the spiritual in human imperfections and failure, in the inevitability of pain. Spirituality is not the evasion of consequences or errors, but rather learning how to live with them. They call trying to be perfect the most tragic human mistake. They are clear, spirituality is found in asking the right questions, not in finding the right answers. Perhaps every reader of this book will not be able to hear it's music. Perhaps only those who have been wounded by life, need it. Perhaps only those who have drunk deeply of failure will find nourishment here. All I know is that I did, and to Kurtz and Ketcham I will always be grateful."
—Peter A. Kindle, Amazon.com Reviews
"The aim of this book is to explain the underlying spiritual--although not necessarily religious--principles of Alcoholics Anonymous. Part 1 presents the emphasis of this spirituality, which is the recognition and especially the acceptance of humans as imperfect beings. Part 2 tells how the founders of AA put spirituality to use. Part 3 discusses the benefits: release, gratitude, humility, tolerance, and forgiveness. On nearly every page, the authors retell stories and provide anecdotes from various sources: ancient Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Greek, and more. One need not have an interest in AA to benefit from this fine introduction to spirituality. This is recommended."
—John Moryl, Yeshiva Univ. Lib., New York