Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent and the call to conversion. Conversion is also about transformation. The United Nations is about the business of transformation toward a better and more beautiful world. Written by Dominic Arcamone, Conversion as Transformation: Lonergan, Mentors, and Cinema is an engaging book on self-development and the search for authenticity. The book can provide much inspiration during this season of Lent.
About the book:
The process of human transformation is complex and ongoing. This book presents a framework for understanding human transformation through the insights of Bernard Lonergan. The reader will be introduced to terms such as the turn to the subject, consciousness, subjectivity, and intersubjectivity. It will explore terms such as horizon, feelings, values, self-esteem, sublation, conversion, dialectic, and religious experience. The book explores transformation through the way mentors have authored their own lives, told their own stories, and taken possession of their interiority. Transformation is illuminated through the lives of saints and ordinary men and women who did extraordinary things, such as St. Augustine, Dag Hammarskjold, Vaclav Havel, Franz Jaggerstatter, St. Therese of Lisieux, Fredrich Nietzsche, Katherine Ann Power, and Marie Cardinal. Transformation is also illustrated through the medium of cinema: Babette’s Feast, The Mission, As It is in Heaven, Romero, Dead Poets Society, Ordinary People, The Godfather trilogy, Three Color trilogy, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Dial M for Murder, and Twelve Angry Men. While the book treats religious, moral, affective, intellectual, and psychic conversion as moments of transformation, it argues that ecological conversion requires all of these so as to meet the most serious challenge of our time.
“Today the international order vibrates in dangerous uncertainty. Multilateralism is under attack. Toxic feelings and nationalistic ideologies contaminate digital space. Opinions and bias become ‘reality,’ truth is suspect and mendacity finds a home. Written in a clear style, Arcamone challenges the reader to explore the dynamics of desire and the critical link between the inner self growing in authenticity and its creation of beneficial exterior structures. If we want to change the world, we need to understand our attitudes, ways of thinking, valuing, and deciding. Coming to know ourselves this way reveals to ourselves what we need to change. New students as well as those more familiar with Lonergan’s insights will benefit from this important work. I highly recommend this book for anyone, especially diplomats and NGO representatives, who are in the business of changing structures and creating a better world.”—Robert Dueweke, OSA, NGO Representative to the United Nations
“Arcamone demonstrates an in-depth understanding of the multifaceted dynamics of conversion as he links highly developed insights to accessible themes, images, and symbols. Take up and read, you will enjoy the journey.”—John Francis Collins, Lecturer & Christian Life and Ministry Discipline Coordinator, Catholic Institute of Sydney
“Dominic Arcamone has written a profoundly pastoral, practical, and intriguing book of theology. In the quest for authenticity Dominic shows his creativity as a communicator by taking us on a cinematic tour of his favourite movies, drawing us into the conversion and transformation of characters and personalities which remind us of our own quest for authenticity.” —Dennis Carroll, Senior Pastoral Care Coordinator, Catholic Healthcare
Dominic Arcamone is a retired mission manager in healthcare. He has also been a sessional lecturer for the Australian Catholic University from 2007 to 2015, writing and teaching graduate and postgraduate courses in theological subjects. He has a B.Th., MTh, MA (Counseling and Pastoral Care), D. Min, Dip. Adult Training and Assessment, and PhD. Since the events of 9/11, he has also focused on the problem of religion and violence and published his first book with Wifp and Stock, Religion and Violence (2015).
SEE ALSO: https://bclonergan.org/news/new-book-on-lonergan-conversion-and-cinema LINK
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