Monday, February 05, 2007

Gilead

I started reading Gilead over the weekend and could not help but reflect upon a passage in Jonathan Franzen's essay entitled "the reader in exile." Where he discusses how books are both a catalyst for self-realization and a sanctuary. He quotes from Sven Birkets' on this topic:

Inwardness, the more reflective component of self, requires a "space" where a person can reflect upon the meaning of things.


and a persons absorption in a novel, which he likens closer to a state of meditation, allows for this space. Birkets' beautifully describes my short engagement with Gilead perfectly:

I feel a tug. The chain has settled over the sprockets; there is the feel of meshing, then the forward glide.
Now the trick is to find the time to get back to that place!

2 comments:

dritsema said...

What a wonderful book. I read it last January for a preaching retreat led by Dr. Cornelius Plantinga (president of Calvin Seminary). We met in the hill country of Texas for a week and read various novels. The retret was called: Imaginative Reading for Creative Preaching. I know he does a similar thing at Calvin in Michigan. If you are interested I would contact him about this or Dr. Hulitt Gloer (preaching professor) at George. W. Truett Theological Seminary (truettseminary.com).

metalepsis said...

Wow that sounds like some retreat. What other books did you read?