BETWEEN HEAVEN AND EARTH by Frans Werfel

BETWEEN HEAVEN AND EARTH

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This book gives, in part, the answer as to how a Jew wasable to demonstrate so keen an appreciation of the spiritualvalues of the Christian faith in its Catholic form as isevidenced by The Song of Bernadette. One will find itdifficult to pigeonhole Werfel from a religious angle. Few ofhis fellow Jews will accept to the extent he does thespiritual values of Christianity, while at the same time theywill be in accord with his rejection of the acceptance of theoutward forms of Christianity, the definite alignments eitherwith liberalism, nationalism or Christianity. The first partof the book is composed of lectures originally delivered -- inGerman -- during the pre-war period. They are typical of thearguments in which European intellectuals delight, but whichseem fairly remote to the average reading public. The secondpart of the book represents Werfel's present point of view, and he arrives at the difficult conclusion that ""completehuman detachment is the first psychological symptom ofspirituality""...The outstanding contribution of this book isits frank rejection of the materialistic philosophy and anemphasis in favor of the spiritual interpretation of life. There are beautiful passages written with characteristicartistry. There are others in which Werfel's ""innerperceptions of the Divine"" is expressed too obscurely forgeneral comprehension. Werfel -- to put it bluntly -- is moreeffective when using the novel as his medium.

ISBN: 1162800402
Publisher: Philosophical Library -- (15 East 40th St. NYC 16)