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The Spirituality and Practice e-newsletter is a weekly update from Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat with teaching stories and links to new posts on the site.

Sign up here. Interviews Scott Russell Sanders


Scott Russell Sanders is one of our favorite spiritual writers; his essays runneth over with spiritually literate insights. It's been a while since we reviewed his last book A Private History of Awe (2007). He has been teaching at Indiana University since 1971 and is very much at home in the Midwest. In this wide-ranging interview with (which bills itself as A Journal of the Built and Natural Environments), Sanders talks about the importance of community for writers; the necessity of envisioning "a more humane, peaceful, conserving, and spiritually rich alternative to consumer culture"; the signs of a new engagement and renewed idealism among students since the election of Barack Obama as President; the role of Aldo Leopold who framed our abuse of the land as a cultural problem; the act of writing as a process of discovery; and the challenge to students with short attention spans to live more reflectively.

Sanders concludes with a preview of A Conservationist Manifesto, his new book which will be released by Indiana University Press: "I want to show that the practice of conservation is our wisest and surest way of caring for our neighbors, for this marvelous planet, and for future generations." Look for our review in April, 2009.

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