by Robert P. Vande Kappelle
Resource Publications, Eugene, Ore. 170 pages
Dark splendor is the way some people describe their sense of faith or spirituality in the latter years. Mature faith that has comes through difficult struggles joins with an honest acknowledgment that we see dimly through a glass darkly. There is even joy and deep peace in the experience of dark splendor. This is the premise of the author who taught for many years at Washington & Jefferson College and the Chautauqua Institute. He draws deeply and widely from depth psychology, Christian spirituality, theology and biblical studies. Those familiar with Carl Jung and Richard Rohr will recognize their influence on the author. It was Rohr who first made popular the ancient notion of the two halves of life with challenges unique to each half. One cannot fall upward into dark splendor by remaining with the perspectives and practices of the fist half of life. In order to grow, one must let go of what no longer satisfies a deeper longing for God – a longing that ushers in the second half. The author, following Jung, Rohr and others, wants to pro- vide a “tool kit” for a mature spirituality that flourishes in the wide world of the second half where dark splendor is common. In the fourth century, Gregory of Nyssa wrote, “sin happens whenever we stop growing.” If you want to cease sinning and continue growing in the spiritual life, this book will help you.