Beyond Yahweh and Jesus : Bringing Death's Wisdom to Faith, Spirituality, and Psychoanalysis
Beyond Yahweh and Jesus constitutes the first in-depth psychoanalytic study of the Old and New Testaments in terms of God's role in enabling humans to cope with death and the anxiety it evokes. The journey on which this study embarks leads through an examination of the related topics of knowledge acquisition; divine wisdom; conscious and unconscious morality; what the author argues is the failure of psychoanalysis to ally itself with religion and the failure of religion to bring peace to the world; and a proposition for how to enhance both religious and secular forms of morality and adaptation to death anxiety.
- Hardback | 220 pages
- 160 x 240 x 22mm | 508g
- 01 Dec 2007
- Jason Aronson Inc. Publishers
- Northvale NJ, United States
You don't read Robert Langs. You submit to him. His voracious hunger for wisdom compels you to listen to his words. His work confronts you like a Rubik's Cube, challenging your intelligence as well as your patience. I've been studying the man's writings for thirty-two years, and I assure you that this book will take you deeper into the labyrinth of the human mind than any other so far. One thing is certain: You will emerge from this journey shaken, your perspective on religion and death forever changed. -- Michael Lutin, president, National Council for Geocosmic Research, New York City; 24-year columnist for Vanity Fair Carl Jung might have recognized that "we must read the Bible or we shall not understand psychology," but it it Langs who shows us that we need Adaptive Psychology to understand the Bible. Langs demonstrates how a study of the Bible, guided by the deep unconscious system of the mind, brings unique and remarkable insight. Adaptive Psychology offers inspirational and essential new ideas to the world of theology. This book is dazzling both in its richness and in its revelations. -- Gaye Gunton, Ph.D. In the midst of war, genocide and terror, biblical scholars and theologians have developed elaborate hermeneutic theories on the real meaning of Sacred Scripture. Dr. Langs has proposed something quite new in this book. Although everyone knows that our human life is bound by birth and death, most of us seek to deny our own death. Death anxiety is rooted in the deep recesses of our psyche. Langs argues that Judeo-Christian Sacred Scripture speaks to the deeper questions of death within our deep unconscious. As Moses encountered God in the Burning Bush, transformation and healing can occur when the human psyche and the deep unconscious wisdom system encounters Sacred Scripture. I work closely with palliative care teams and have found Dr. Langs' work quite helpful. -- Rev. Bruce N. Teague, M. Div., staff chaplain, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA A thoughtful and meticulously reasoned discussion of where religion and psychology most need to intersect. Midwest Book Review A provocative and thought-provoking account that will challenge many of the convictions and persuasions of analytically oriented thinkers. Anyone who may be interested in the deeper psychoanalytic understanding of religious thinking and belief will not want to miss this stimulating recasting of the interaction of psychoanalysis and religious faith. Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic: A Journal for the Mental Health Professions, Spring 2009 Dr. Langs is a creative, courageous and original thinker in this generation of traditionally trained Freudian psychoanalysts. His prophetic nature shines forth best in this inspired work. Here, he takes the reader to the shadows and valleys of death and tells us there is wisdom to be embraced within the realities of death both consciously and unconsciously. Only in facing this dark side found by decoding the triggers for these painful realities can we fully embrace a more peaceful and loving life. A modern-day sage, Langs' inspired work of faith uncovers the emotionally processing mind as the nucleus of this adaptive approach. Buried in the unconscious, according to Langs, God has given every person his or her greatest mental resource and divine wisdom to lead generative, moral and inspired lives. Divine Wisdom is not found in external gestures of ritual but only by entering the interior world of experiences, memories, anxieties, uncertainties and loving relationships. Langs offers the psychoanalytic profession a way to appreciate the beauty and depth of every person by identifying the Inner God and shows us how to use this as a resource not just for healing self but the world around. This book is a must-read for any clinician, believer or non-believer, who embraces the psychoanalytic vocation as having everything to do with the transcendent nature of humankind. -- Paula J. Hamm, LPC, PC, member, International Psychoanalytic Association and Washington, D.C. Center for Psychoanalysis
About Robert Langs
Robert Langs, M.D. is the author of 45 books and some 170 papers on psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, the emotion-processing mind and its evolutionary history and adapative capacities, the therapeutic interaction and its boundaries, ground rules, and techniques, and the role played by trauma, death, and death anxiety in both human creativity and emotional difficulties as played out in the treatment situation and everyday life.
Table of contents
Chapter 1 Author's Note Chapter 2 My Appointment in Samara Chapter 3 The First Question: God's Answer Chapter 4 The First Question: Eve's Answer Chapter 5 Death Anxiety and Divine Wisdom Chapter 6 Augustine's Version of Adam's Sin Chapter 7 Eve's Motives Chapter 8 Cain and Abel Chapter 9 Augustine's Reliving of the Sin of Cain Chapter 10 The Failure to Master Death Anxiety: Yahweh Chapter 11 Resolving Death Anxiety: Jesus Christ Chapter 12 The Failure of Religious Beliefs Chapter 13 Why Psychoanalysis Failed Religion Chapter 14 The Future of Religious and Secular Spirituality