7.15.2009

#40. The Wild at Heart Books

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No, we have not been poisoned by fairy tales and they are not merely "myths." Far from it. The truth is, we have not taken them seriously enough. As Roland Hein says, "Myths are stories which confront us with something transcendent and eternal." In the case of our fair maiden, we have overlooked two very crucial aspects to that myth. On the one hand, none of us ever really believed the sorcerer was real. We thought we could have the maiden without a fight. Honestly, most of us guys thought our biggest battle was asking her out. And second, we have not understood the tower and its relation to her wound; the damsel is in distress. If masculinity has come under assault, femininity has been brutalized. Eve is the crown of creation, remember? She embodies the exquisite beauty and the exotic mystery of God in a way that nothing else in all creation even comes close to. And so she is the special target of the Evil One; he turns his most vicious malice against her. If he can destroy her or keep her captive, he can ruin the story.

Author: John Eldredge (Captivating with Stasi Eldredge; The Sacred Romance with Brent Curtis)

Synopsis: Wild at Heart talks about what men most desire: a battle to fight, an adventure to live, and a beauty to rescue. Captivating discusses a woman's three great wishes: to be romanced, to be an irreplaceable part of an adventure, to have beauty to unveil. The Sacred Romance and Journey of Desire speak of God's love for us and our adventure in learning to love Him.

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Oddly enough, after reading Wild at Heart, I came away thoroughly fascinated by what women desire--and not exactly as the Eldredges put it. Captivating didn't quite live up to the emotive writing of Wild at Heart, and I thought it didn't look closely enough at a woman's desire to nurture; I would have added that as a full fourth desire. Sure, it messes up the neat "three" thing, but it's important.

Between the two books, I have visions of womanhood that encompass everything from the tender-eyed soft-hearted ladylike girl to wood-queens with swords and long wild hair and fierceness in their eyes. For all my resentment toward certain aspects of feminism, I can't dissociate myself from the movement entirely when I read a book about men and come away having learned more about the fair sex.

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