Our book on fasting is now available. We worked on this book for about a year; it is one of the volumes in Nelson’s The Ancient Practices Series. Phyllis Tickle is the General Editor and other volumes now available are by Brian McLaren and Robert Benson.
I hope you can find a way to use it in your own spiritual disciplines as well as for Lent this year. It is called: Fasting: The Ancient Practices
Ruth Haley Barton says there is a radical reorientation to fasting in this book, and I’d like you to consider the central thesis of this book that challenges what I call the “instrumental” view of fasting. That is, fasting is something we do in order to get something else, regardless of what the “something else” might be — including personal growth in spiritual formation.
I propose instead what I call a “responsive” understanding of fasting: that we fast in response to something rather than fast in order to get something.