Book Review: Finding God in the Body
Finding God in the Body: A Spiritual Path for the Modern West by Benjamin Riggs presents an argument for the value of the role our basic awareness and lived experience plays in our spiritual growth. He draws from his personal experience and blends spiritual truths and practices from both eastern and western traditions.
I found his premise and subject interesting, though I was expecting the majority of the book to delve more deeply into the material that actually comprised just the last 70 pages of the book. The majority of the book was devoted to a building argument that western spirituality is too focused on thoughts and emotions and misses the body, which he defines as the underlying basic awareness of reality, that our lived experience and physical presence builds upon.
Though I was engaged by the intention, I was somewhat disappointed by the execution. Riggs tended to globalize his experience overmuch and built his argument on assumptions that were not thoroughly supported. In particular, he spent a good portion of the middle of the book arguing with imagined naysayers who are unlikely to read the book anyway, which caused the section to feel preachy and slowed the pace significantly. I was also extremely disappointed in the entirely unnecessary and prolific use of gender-specific language throughout the book. But that is all I will say on that point.
Overall, it was an okay read. I most appreciated the intention and topic presented in the book. I expect to keep it on my shelf and reread it. If you are sensitive to strong language or spiritually synchronistic remarks, then this book is not for you; however, it might be helpful if you are experiencing a faith shift or have been burned by fundamentalist religious circles.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.