Taking a Long Road Home: A Memoir-Eugene C. Bianchi

  • Title: Taking a Long Road Home: A Memoir
  • Author: Eugene C. Bianchi
  • Released: 2010-11-15
  • Language:
  • Pages: 188
  • ISBN: 160899788X
  • ISBN13: 978-1608997886
  • ASIN: 160899788X


This memoir invites readers to explore stages of their own spiritual journey. Bianchi graphically describes his path from an Italian immigrant family on the West Coast, through twenty years as a Jesuit, to being a professor of religious studies at Emory University. As he develops a more this-worldly inner life, Bianchi struggles with church teachings about Christ, sexuality, and authority. He candidly reveals how failed marriages gave him a humbler grasp of meeting the transcendent in everyday problems. He embraces a contemplative spirituality that links Buddhist and Taoist practices with western mysticism. With a foot in Christianity, he shows how to walk a way of inter-spirituality as a meaningful road for the contemporary seeker. For Bianchi this involves becoming a metaphorical Christian as he moves away from religious certitudes of early life to find spirit in nature and humanity. Bianchi, a well-known writer on spiritual aging, challenges Baby Boomers to craft a contemplative life that works for them today. With his wife and two cats, he discovers a home for body and spirit along the banks of the Oconee River in Athens, Georgia.

"Eugene Bianchi's memoir will interest, indeed fascinate, anyone who has lived through the turbulent yet gripping religious transitioning of the last three-quarter century. He emerges as a successfully failed Jesuit and a sojourner in faith as in life. His Taking a Long Road Home is an outstanding example of beautifully sustained narrative, headlong in parts, erudite, disarmingly truthful and humble, deftly cumulative, metaphoric, sure and yet tentative. It deserves a quiet reading place beyond distractions. It will be a challenge to set aside before its finish."
--Robert Brophy
Professor of English Emeritus
California State University, Long Beach.

"Eugene Bianchi's memoir displays a stunning humility--in the root sense of the word. Earthy and courageous, it charts the journey of one man's search for (and discovery of) a fully embodied spirituality, a search that leads him from his Italian-American roots through the Jesuits and several marriages to being, finally, at home. "
--Barbara DeConcini
Executive Director of the American Academy of Religion, 1991-2006

"Bianchi writes with clarity, candor, and remarkable compassion. He speaks the truth as he has experienced it across a long life dedicated to spiritual and personal authenticity. The path he has followed from a rigid religiosity of abstract ideals to a calm acceptance of the presence of the divine in the ordinary stuff of human life is very much his own--yet it describes as well the stages through which many Catholics and Religious of his generation have passed. Here is a memoir that marks not only the moments of an individual's life but the momentous changes in a significant part of American culture over the past six decades."
--Luke Timothy Johnson
R. W. Woodruff Professor, New Testament Studies
Emory University

"Eugene Bianchi's memoir of a long life in and around American Catholicism is an eloquent testimony to his ongoing search for spiritual completeness. From his days as a Jesuit, to years of searching for love and fulfillment, to the quieter and perhaps deeper questions that have come with length of years, Bianchi offers an inspiring and often moving account of how a human life and a religious tradition are interwoven in ways both challenging and consoling."
--Paul Lakeland
Aloysius P. Kelley, SJ, Professor of Catholic Studies
Fairfield University

Eugene C. Bianchi is a Professor of Religion Emeritus at Emory University. In addition to his many books and articles, he has written two novels. He has also served in leadership roles in educational and religious organizations. Bianchi is currently working on a contemplative guide for aging.
--This text refers to the edition. pdf
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