Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Jack Miles has written two books that are extremely valuable for amplifying our understanding of God and god-image. The books are GOD: A BIOGRAPHY (Random House, 1995) and CHRIST, A CRISIS IN THE LIFE OF GOD (Knopf, 2001). In the two books Miles treats the God presented as a personality who is telling his story as a way of expressing who and what he is--just as any human does when he/she tells his/her story. It's a simple approach but one that yields up interesting insights into the nature and character of "God." I enjoy these two books because they have provided (and continue to provide) me a way of becoming familiar with biblical themes and stories that I find easier going that reading scripture.

The personality, nature, and character of the god and god-image that emerge from Miles' approach provide context and understanding that is helpful for the depth psychologist. The phenomenon of god that is revealed more nearly approximates the background tapestry of the unconscious of moderns than does the theology of the all-good, omniscient, and all-powerful god described in the belief system of the ordinary church-goer today. Modern people who turn to depth psychology for self-understanding will recognize in these two books the discontinuities between the god of their beliefs and the god who makes himself felt through experiences of the unconscious. The former is often an intellectual construct while the latter is a reality.

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