Dancing with Fire
A Mindful Way to Loving Relationships
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Winner of the 2014 Silver Independent Publisher Book Award in the relationship category and winner of the Spirituality and Practice Award as one of the best spiritual books of 2013!
The search for inner peace is often met with what seems like a conflicting path- the irresistible pull of love and connection with others to which we are drawn.
Reconciling these opposites, John Amodeo shows how spirituality and vibrant relationships are identical. He says that Buddha’s concept of the root of suffering is misunderstood. It is not desire that causes suffering; desire is the fire that springs from the basic life force. Drawing upon the science of attachment theory, Amodeo illuminates how the root of our suffering is disconnection from ourselves and others, which is fueled by clinging to what doesn’t serve us
In a conversational tone, Amodeo presents relationship as sacred experience. He teaches how to welcome desire mindfully rather than suppress it and how to overcome fear of failure in relating. He also discusses meditation as self-intimacy and holding ourselves with loving-kindness. Lastly, he explores the role of community in spiritual awakening and the issue of whom to trust–our guru or ourselves?
"John Amodeo combines a lifetime of professional psychotherapist work, a love of mindful meditation, and a wry sense of humor ("vertical spirituality!") in his latest book, Dancing with Fire. Amodeo skillfully boils down the conflicting messages of Buddhism ("attachment" causes suffering) and modern psychology/spiritual self-help (love/partnerships equals depth of human experience) to give readers his view of what it means to live in this world: How to end or, at least, become more aware of the need to cling to "suffering." He applies this message to relationships, addressing issues of love, attachment, longing, intimacy, connection, and romance. Dancing with Fire is well written, down to earth, and very informative. It's an excellent guide for couples especially, but also for anyone searching to merge the detached mindfulness of Buddhism with loving spirituality into their modern, practical lives without compromising their feelings." --Allyson Gracie, Retailing Insight, June 2013
"Dancing with Fire by John Amodeo offers fresh takes on attachment, desire, longing, love, intimacy and spiritual meaning in relationships". --Frederic Brussat, Spirituality & Practice
"DANCING WITH FIRE was an interesting read. It was about looking at past behaviors, explaining why we react to certain situations the way we do, and how to move forward. Recognizing the why was really important to me. I found myself reading certain sections and saying "hey that is me". It also explains the difference between "religion" and "spirituality", "flight and fight response", etc. A lot of the information was based on Buddism and for me, this was distracting at times because I am not familiar with Buddism. Because of this, I found myself putting the book down frequently. Having said that, I did find it informative and I did learn how to recognize my behaviors." --MyBookAddictionReviews
"Dancing With Fire is wise, integrated, life affirming, and practical. John invites us and accompanies us to discover a fully human, loving, spiritual maturity." --Jack Kornfield, PhD, best-selling author of A Path With Heart
"A fresh and lucid voice in our emerging Western spirituality, John Amodeo offers a powerful synthesis of Buddhist teachings with attachment theory and the best of Western psychological understanding. Particularly compelling and promising is the weaving of Focusing--a body-oriented psychotherapy developed by Eugene Gendlin--with mindfulness meditation. Through this, and deep insights into the nature of relationships, Dancing with Fire gives us invaluable guidance in cultivating true intimacy with our lives." --Tara Brach, PhD, best-selling author of Radical Acceptance