A Guide to Peace of Mind
Email this review


 Veteran author Carmody (Religion/University of Tulsa; Contemporary Catholic Theology, 1980, etc.) delivers a soft- spoken primer on how to deal with times of crisis. This is no academic exercise for the author, who suffers from incurable bone cancer. Drawing on his own experience, that of friends and acquaintances, teachings from various religions, and a seemingly endless well of common sense and love, Carmody offers simple, solid advice that will be welcomed by almost anyone. As he sees it, we can meet our problems through five interrelated activities: thinking, feeling, sharing, deciding, and praying. Thinking involves gathering facts, facing them squarely, and picturing solutions. Feeling means accepting pain while overcoming anxiety through courage, faith, and trust. These noble qualities can be strengthened by sharing our plight with others, as well as helping them with their woes. Carmody recommends turning to family, friends, teachers, clergy, doctors, and counselors (the last only if they grasp the essential mystery of life). The most important sharing is with God (``Pour out your soul to the divine mystery, wait attentively, and you will never lack for wonder''). God, the author says, will help when it comes time for difficult decisions (in Carmody's case, whether to hazard a harrowing bone-marrow transplant), which must be made in a sober state, free from euphoria or depression. At the end comes prayer--Carmody outlines several methods, including Buddhist meditation and Christian contemplation--and abidance in the biblical virtues of faith, hope, and love. Reliable counsel for sufferers everywhere.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1993
ISBN: 0-385-47120-3
Page count: 192pp
Publisher: Doubleday
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 1993