A Rose Planted in the Desert of Our Hearts
By Stephen G. Post
(Templeton Press, Paperback, 9781599471518, 128pp.)
Publication Date: December 2008
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In this uplifting new book, author Stephen G. Post explores the mysteries and the wonder of Godly love—the all important love that is at once personal, unconditional, unlimited, generative, and omnipresent. The title alludes to Isaiah 35, to the way in which Godly love is said to plant a rose in our hearts precisely when we feel most like a dry desert with no more love of our own to give.
Post draws on his own life experiences as well as his work at the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, as he intersperses personal anecdotes with spiritual truths and research on human happiness. In the process, he defines the concept of Godly love and illustrates how important it can be in our lives—not only emotionally and spiritually, but physically as well. "Godly love," he writes, "is the only foundation in the universe that we can really lean on."
We all have deserts in life, so we all need Godly love. Without it, the downward slide to cynicism, hostility, and cool indifference can be all too easy. These meditations on the subject will nurture our confidence in the power of a love that is greater than our own, when we need it most.
Stephen G. Post is professor of preventive medicine, and director of the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics at Stony Brook University of the State University of New York. He is recognized internationally for his work on the unselfish compassionate love at the interface of science, ethics, religious thought, and behavioral medicine. In addition, he is a recognized expert on the spiritual and ethical aspects of caring for persons with dementia. Post is the founding president of the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, Altruism, Compassion, Service, which was founded in 2001 (www.unlimitedloveinstitute.com). The Institute facilitates research, writing, conferences, and courses at the interface of science, spirituality, health, and love for humanity.