The great narratives of religion and nationhood were battered in the twentieth century by the dual forces of globalization and postmodernism. In the uncertainty of broken traditions, many people looking for God retreated into a regressive fundamentalism, and others abandoned themselves to nihilism and cynicism. But is there another way? In this volume, esteemed sociologist and therapist Mark W. Teismann offers a fresh approach to spiritual pursuits, one that neither relies upon absolutes nor leaves seekers in a void of disbelief. This approach is to consider the exercise of spirituality as a type of play. Teismann takes the reader on a whirlwind ride through the different aspects of play and how they relate to spirituality. Teismann draws on classical philosophers, memories of childhood, developmental science, poets, and his long career as a psychotherapist to create a deep understanding of how the spirit of play informs our moral pursuits and spiritual yearnings. A conclusion and epilogue summarize the book's tenets and touch on Mark Teismann's battle with cancer and how the practices of meditation and play accompanied him on his spiritual journey in the context of an incurable disease. The book's appendix gives interested readers a detailed description of how to approach the practice of meditation.
About the Author
Mark W. Teismann taught at Northern Illinois University, where he was a professor, founder of the training program in family and marital therapy, and director of the Family Center. Lynn Weber is a writer, editor, and book reviewer.