The Presence of Absence: On Prayers and an Epiphany (Paperback) ... Cover Art

The Presence of Absence: On Prayers and an Epiphany (Paperback)

By: Doris Grumbach


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As a 27-year-old, the poet Doris Grumbach had a fleeting yet undeniable experience of God's presence. In order to recapture that experience, she began a frustrating few decades of churchgoing, and eventually she abandoned formal prayer--only to begin an equally frustrating search for God in private. The Presence of Absence: On Prayers and an Epiphany is a slim memoir of her ongoing search. Grumbach is most interesting when she reflects on the writers and thinkers--from Meister Eckhart to Kathleen Norris--who have shaped her understanding of the risks and rewards of solitary prayer. And although her unyielding integrity has trapped her in a loneliness that sometimes sounds terrifying, Grumbach's stringent refusal to be glib about God will serve as an inspiring corrective example for many. --Michael Joseph Gross

Short Desription

The Presence of Absence follows Grumbach's journey to recover through prayer the sense of God's presence. Illuminated by her readings of accounts of epiphany and intensified by an extended period of extreme and chronic pain, Grumbach's quest to feel the presence of God is a moving and inspiring journey through vanity, faith, and love.

"[Grumbach's] prose shines with serene grace."
-Le Anne Schreiber, The New York Times Book Review



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