4 out of 4 stars
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Whether it is done consciously or subconsciously, each of us is on a journey that compels us to follow. For me, it is a journey of searching for the truth; especially the truth concerning religion. The latest book I’ve read, Beyond Supernatural Realism: Jesus and the Call to Authenticity, continues my personal journey. It is a non-fiction, philosophical booklet written by Robert High Baker and is only 40 pages long. It consists of a preface, six chapters, and a conclusion along with two pages of references.
While this book can be read in less than two hours, I wouldn’t recommend it. Baker attempts and accomplishes defining Christian existentialism which if read in a rush can be confusing and deserves to be thought through. In the first two chapters, he objectively explains the origins of Christianity. There are two different schools of thought that share one commonality: supernatural reality. In chapters 3 and 4, Baker philosophically explains Christian existentialism and how to maintain “the mystery of our existence” without supernaturalism. For chapter 5, he explores the “existential themes in Christianity.” In chapter 6, Baker applies existentialism to the life and teachings of Jesus.
I like that Baker’s writing style is clear, concise, and methodical. He starts the reader off with what is better known about Christianity and effortlessly leads into a different perspective towards Christianity. He provides questions throughout the booklet to get the reader engaged and provides examples when applying existential thought to Christianity and Jesus. One tidbit of information that I didn’t know is that the Nicene Creed was created to blend the two prevalent groups of Christianity, which were Hebrews and Greeks, into one. A word Baker used that was like an old friend is “is-ness.” It brought to mind Richard L. Haight using the word “isness” in The Unbound Soul.
There is truly nothing that I didn’t like about this booklet. It appears to be professionally edited as I found no mistakes. I admit the concept is somewhat difficult to comprehend, but that is on me, not the writer. I’m confident that it will become easier as I continue to ponder this concept. Because of the topic, there are no cursing or sexual scenes.
I rate Beyond Supernatural Realism: Jesus and the Call to Authenticity 4 out of 4 stars because it is engaging, well-written, and thought-provoking. If you’re like me where questioning and learning is your life-long journey, I would recommend this book; however, if you are comfortable with your beliefs toward Christianity, I would leave this one alone. As I was reading, a thought came to mind that I want to share. Will keeping an open mind and attempting to see the big picture get one closer to the truth?
Beyond Supernatural Realism
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