The Holy Longing The Search for a Christian Spirituality


In this article, we will explore the book “The Holy Longing: The Search for a Christian Spirituality” by Ronald Rolheiser. This book has had a lasting impact on readers since its release in 1999. As we delve into its insights, we will also compare it to other popular spiritual self-help books of the time, such as “The Celestine Prophecy,” “The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success,” and “Tuesdays with Morrie.”

Similarities to “Tuesdays with Morrie”

One striking similarity between “The Holy Longing” and “Tuesdays with Morrie” is their attempt to distill spirituality into principles, laws, or lessons. Both books aim to provide readers with a framework for understanding and embracing spirituality. This can be likened to the way The Ten Commandments serve as a centerpiece for the Old Testament or the popular sign “Live. Laugh. Love.” found in many homes.

Another shared characteristic is the de-emphasis or even ignorance of human flaws or sin. While “The Holy Longing” encourages readers to confess their sins, it does not dwell on human weakness to the extent that theologians like Reinhold Niebuhr or secular writers like Joseph Conrad might. Similarly, “Tuesdays with Morrie” focuses on the wisdom and life lessons imparted by Morrie rather than the tragic or flawed aspects of human existence.

Popularity and Sales

Both “The Holy Longing” and “Tuesdays with Morrie” enjoyed significant popularity and sales. “The Celestine Prophecy” sold a staggering 23 million copies, while “Tuesdays with Morrie” sold nearly 18 million. These numbers are comparable to the sales of popular music albums from the 1990s. In contrast, “The Holy Longing” sold 200,000 copies, which is a commendable figure for a book on Christian spirituality.

The Holy Longing: A Cut Above

While “The Holy Longing” may not have reached the same level of popularity as “The Celestine Prophecy” or “Tuesdays with Morrie,” it deserves recognition as a superior work. Ronald Rolheiser’s insights and teachings in this book offer a profound exploration of Christian spirituality. The depth and wisdom found within its pages make it a valuable resource for those seeking a deeper understanding of their faith.

In conclusion, “The Holy Longing: The Search for a Christian Spirituality” by Ronald Rolheiser stands out as a profound and insightful exploration of Christian spirituality. While it may not have achieved the same level of popularity as other spiritual self-help books of its time, its depth and wisdom make it a worthwhile read for anyone on a spiritual journey.