Acedia & Me
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Acclaimed writer Kathleen Norris Brilliantly demystifies the forgotten but utterly relevant concept of acedia, a term that has often been understood as spiritual sloth, signifying the serious malady of being unable to care. Norris resurrects a discussion of acedia through the geography of her own life as a writer; her marriage and the challenges of commitment in the midst of grave illness; and her keen interest int he monastic tradition. She writes of her and her husband David's battles with acedia and its clinical cousin, depressions, and traces acedia's path through literary and religious history, exposing the damage it does not only to individual lives but also to out culture as a whole, as we are inundated by distractions and lose the ability to care about work, marriage, friendship, faith, and community. Inspiring us with her own spiritual awakening, Norris observes that the "restless boredom, frantic escapism, commitment phobia, and enervating despair: that we struggle with today are "the ancient demon of acedia in modern dress."