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REVIEWS: The Inner Palace


The Inner Palace
Mirrors of Psychospirituality
in Divine and Sacred Wisdom-Traditions
(Eighth edition)
With Foreword by Robert C. Solomon, Ph.D.
Mitchell D. Ginsberg
(2013)





Text length: 900 pdf pages (6" x 9")
Complete work in one book (earlier editions were printed in two volumes)
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-938459-20-7    $46
Softcover ISBN: 978-1-938459-21-4    $36
eBook ISBN: 978-1-938459-22-1    $18

Reviews


The Inner Palace speaks to the richness of human experience, and it expresses itself in a passion for sharing and teaching, both in the many authors that Mitchell quotes and in his own impressive performance. He offers us a wealth of material filled with divine light-giving, the sacred clothed in words, concepts as metaphors of holiness, “Unspeakable Source of Awe.” The book is mercifully undogmatic, despite its theme which has often become the most “dogmatic” of subjects.
Robert C. Solomon, Quincy Lee Centennial Professor of Philosophy, University of Texas at Austin. Author of Spirituality for the Skeptic, The Joy of Philosophy, and Not Passion's Slave: Emotions and Choice.


Coming just over a century after William James’s classic Varieties of Religious Experience, The Inner Palace proves to be a more fitting successor to James’s work than any of the myriad of books on religion, comparative religion, and the history of religion that have appeared in the intervening century. The Inner Palace is, like Varieties, a phenomenology: Faithful to the objective contours of the religious scriptures and wisdom literatures which it draws upon, as a study it focuses on the personal experience of the follower of each such tradition. The scope of this book is breathtaking, its depth of insight into each tradition awesome, and its link to contemporary literature on consciousness impressive and gratifying. Like Varieties, it is sure to become a foundational work for scholars and students in many disciplines—religion, philosophy, psychology, and the history of culture.
Maurice Friedman, Professor of Religious Studies, San Diego State Univ. Author of A Heart of Wisdom: Religion and Human Wholeness and Encounter on the Narrow Ridge: A Life of Martin Buber.


I think that The Inner Palace is brilliant and most inspiring!
Bradley Clough, Associate Professor of Liberal Studies (Asian Religious Studies), The University of Montana. Author of Early Indian and Theravada Buddhism: Soteriological Controversy and Diversity.


The Inner Palace has been written with love and scholarly knowledge, a rare combination these days. It is true that the gates to our own inner palace are as innumerable as there are people. Love and knowledge can, however, be counted as its main keys. A fascinating book!
Mohammed Siraj, Member of the Gudri Shahi Sufi Order and Moderator of the Chishtiyya Sufi on-line Discussion Group.


Ginsberg leads his reader on a rich and engaging tour through the treasure troves of Buddhist literature, as seen through a mind that has also benefited from Kabbalistic writings, Sufi and Christian mystical treatises and poetry, Taoist literature, and Western philosophy and psychotherapy.
Richard P. Hayes, Prof. of Buddhist Studies, McGill University, Montreal. Author of Dignaga on the Interpretation of Signs and Land of No Buddha.


A wonderful book, a precious gift to those interested in the spiritual teachings and practices of humankind—to academics and scholars, to seekers of inner peace and profound religious insights. A multi-dimensional vision of mystical experiences, psychospiritual practices, philosophical systems, and poetical images from the cultures of Far Eastern Chan/Zen and Buddhism, Vedanta, Kabbalah, Christian, and Sufi teachings. An Indra’s net of gems offering interreflections of the inner palace of the soul of humankind, of our innermost being.
Evgeny A. Torchinov, Head of Dept. of Oriental Philosophy and Cultural Studies, Faculty of Philosophy, St. Petersburg State University, Russia. Author of Religions of the World (Религии мира — Religii mira) and Daoism (Даозисм — Daozism).

Because I am convinced that the profoundly secular bias of our modern technocratic world has been a factor in our collective problems, I think that it is important that the voice of the wise of all lands be heard and that, rising above sectarianism, we listen to their chorus. Nobody can educate us so well in what the spiritual traditions have in common as one who, beyond extensive learning, has traveled far and wide, and Mitchell Ginsberg, a learned scholar and a seasoned seeker, has created for us out of exquisitely chosen gems a trans-systemic mystic mosaic of rare value.
Claudio Naranjo, M.D., Ed.D., psychiatrist, pioneer in the Human Potential Movement and Consciousness Studies; devoted to working with educators in Europe, Latin America, & Australia toward a post-patriarchal education. Author of over 20 books including: Cambiar la Educación para Cambiar el Mundo (Changing Education to Change the World), The Way of Silence and the Talking Cure, and Healing Civilization.




SOME FURTHER COMMENTS BY READERS

I love reading through The Inner Palace. It is a slow process, reflecting on many inner views and experiences. I love the tone of voice of the author, which accompanies the reader through inner reflections like an intimate and caring friend.


The book shows excellent scholarship, and contains very beautiful and inspiring pieces. You have done a great job.


This work begins as slow reading, very dense, interesting, and rich. I really love it. This reads as a full receptacle of many years of musing and research and deep synthesis of insight and scholarship.

      It is a great advocate for a very compelling theme. I love the fact that the author is supporting a rather transcendent theme (symbolized by the inner palace) with such scrupulous details of scholarship. I also love the chapter headings, esp. the one about gnostics, mystics, accountants, and surfers. I really feel it is a great contribution and well worth the effort the author obviously has put into this opus.


I am a graduate student in Theology and Religious Studies. A couple of months ago, as I was doing a random search for titles having to do with transpersonal psychology, I providentially came across a description of The Inner Palace.

      I was immediately captivated and decided to purchase the work. Truly, I have not been disappointed! The Inner Palace is, indeed, a many-faceted diamond, a veritable jewel of spiritual literature, and one of the most profound works of esoteric/mystical literature I have ever seen!

      In addition to being an example of impeccable scholarship — displaying the incontrovertible erudition of its author — it is also a work of the deepest warmth, wisdom, and yes, compassion. The Inner Palace does well what many books in its genre fail to do: it both ENLIGHTENS and HEALS. This is a tribute to its author who, like the spiritual masters of old, has placed his considerable learning at the service of the knowledge-of-the-heart.


This creative work manages to talk of spirituality and psychology in the same breath, of the mind, the heart, and the inspired soul. The Inner Palace offers the reader reflections on some of the world’s great spiritual traditions that underlie both the major religions of the world and other lesser-known teachings from around the world.


The Inner Palace, carefully crafted and very informative, is an incredible collection of extremely interesting thoughts on the world's spiritual traditions. It carefully illustrates many of the commonalities amongst the major traditions of the world. Especially in today’s times of more and more strife and division when it comes to religious beliefs, this opus helps people to see the possible connections to be found in Christianity, Islam (Sufi and other mystical traditions of Islam are explored), Buddhism, Judaism, and various other philosophies such as Taoism.
      It is a wonderful collection of carefully documented scholarship on the world’s major religious traditions, filled with philosophical and linguistic gems. The writing is clear and very carefully documented. Great care is taken to show the linguistic origins of many works and specific words and texts, adding to the interest of the book. Readers will enjoy seeing the importance of translation and the effect that translation has on the interpretation of many spiritual and philosophical works.
      I highly recommend this book to all readers — both general readers and specialized scholars — interested in comparative religion, spirituality, philosophy, psychology, meditation, and linguistics, as well as in what the author terms psychospirituality (the transformation of the soul, that is, of our most basic consciousness), and how to live a more effective happy life.


      This compelling and insightful work is a fascinating guided tour (even a tour de force) of the spiritual journey from ordinary life to enlightenment, which can be referenced to the idea of an essential human spiritual psychology as it appears in a number of Wisdom traditions. It is truly a stunning work.

 

   
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