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The True Wilderness


Publisher writes

The True Wilderness has established itself as one of the spiritual classics of the twentieth century. Given as sermons to Trinity College undergraduates in the years following the author's breakdown in the 1950's, it illustrates the dangers of bad religion and the debilitating effects of a false view of God. Williams goes on to show that the true God is experienced by people who have accepted themselves and other people. It is a plea for a positive, life-enhancing faith and its unsparing honesty is particularly suited to contemporary readers.

Author Information

Williams, H.A.

H.A. Williams was Dean of Trinity College, Cambridge. His first book, "True Wilderness" went through four reprints in its first year of publication and is still in print over thirty years later. He is also the author of "Tensions" and "The Joy of God." He is now a member of the Community of the Resurrection, Mirfield.

Judges' and contributors' comments

Barry Morgan: This is a series of sermons preached at Trinity College Cambridge relating theology to experience.

Jonathan Ewer: Written out of his own pain, Harry’s book is a sensitive and penetrating exploration of the human condition and how you might live through it constructively. I’ve passed it on to numerous people at times when they were finding life extremely difficult, and all of them have been helped by it.

Robin Baird-Smith: H.A. Williams was one of the most original Christian thinkers since the war. He wrote at a certain stage in his life that he would only write about the truth about God as he had experienced it – and this after rejecting stuffy traditional Anglo-Catholicism, which he came to despise. After a nervous breakdown, he embarked on some years of psychoanalysis. The result of this experience was a masterpiece The True Wilderness, that rarest of things – a collection of sermons that became a bestseller.

Alan Billings: This introduced me to quite a different style of preaching, one that was grounded in people’s experience and that took account of psychological insights.

Mark Oakley: I was privileged to have Harry Williams as a friend and, although perhaps a little dated now, his Some Day I’ll Find You and The True Wilderness were exceptionally important in helping me see that talking about truth is not the same thing as being honest and that the Church has a lot of work still to do in managing the latter.

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