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Being Called


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"Being Called explores the uncharted scientific territory of how profound inner experiences can bring meaning and purpose. Eminent scientists and scholars share their own perspectives and offer insights on how to make sense of callings in our lives." -- Adam Grant, Wharton professor and New York Times bestselling author of Give and Take "This fascinating book sheds much-needed light on what it means to find a calling in life-an experience that, although timeless and universal, has not been understood well in the human sciences. Through valuable insights from leaders in theology, philosophy, and contemporary psychology, the authors add greatly our knowledge of this essential component of the examined life." -- Dr. William Damon is professor of education at the Stanford Graduate School of Education and author of Good Work and The Path to Purpose. "Some people work at jobs, but others have callings. Calling can endow work with considerable meaning and thereby enrich a large portion of life. This book offers diverse, thoughtful, and engaging perspectives on being called. It is a rich and enlightening exploration of a common but often neglected aspect of human life-and one that holds the promise of enabling people to be happier, healthier, and more productive." -- Dr. Roy F. Baumeister, author of Meanings of Life "Being Called is an important, groundbreaking book. Until now the claim of "being called" has fallen on deaf ears of both social scientists and vocational counselors." -- George E. Vaillant, MD, and Diane M. Highum, MD "Being Called is a far-reaching scientific collection on callings. Incorporating insights from neuroscience, psychology, as well as Eastern and Western spiritual traditions, this book takes both a personal and scholarly look at the events that impart profound meaning and purpose to our lives. A great book for anyone interested in a cross-disciplinary perspective on these experiences." -- Harold G. Koenig, MD, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, associate professor of medicine, and director of the Center for Spirituality, Theology and Health, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina "Being Called is a groundbreaking work of scholarship on one of the most important issues that each and every person faces: How to find a transcendent meaning in life. This book, always engaging and often delightful to read, sheds light on that fundamental question with insights from psychology, neuroscience, and theology. Anyone who has ever wondered 'what should I do with my life?' will find nuggets of wisdom and inspiration in this important work." -- Emily Esfahani Smith, writer, The Atlantic; columnist, The New Criterion "Being Called skillfully weaves together a chorus of scientific, theological, and deeply personal voices-voices that reflect the diverse ways in which people experience a sense of calling in their lives. This is a refreshing, thought-provoking, timely book on an exciting topic, one that has too often been overlooked within scholarly circles." -- Julie Exline, PhD, professor, department of Psychological Sciences, Case Western Reserve University "This is a rare, inspiring book. Leading academics discuss and push the boundaries of how we understand the meaning of being called-and where this calling may come from. It should be mandatory reading in psychology and religious studies programs." -- Miguel Farias, DPhil (Oxford), Director of the Brain, Belief and Behavior research group at Coventry University and author of The Buddha Pill: Can Meditation Change You? "This is a fascinating book on what it means to be called, to have a calling, and to answer the call that comes from within. It is a rich tapestry of views on living an inspired life from a place that is deeper than mere pragmatics." -- Roshi Joan Halifax, PhD, is a Zen priest, anthropologist, and author of Being With Dying, who has served on the faculty of Columbia University, the University of Miami School of Medicine, the New School for Social Research, and Naropa University. "As we try to assemble a genuinely global wisdom, it is good that this theme of 'calling' is being investigated from such diverse perspectives in a context which promises the possibility of a fruitful conversation." -- The Rt Revd & Rt Hon Richard Chartres KCVO DD FSA, Bishop of London

About the Author

David Bryce Yaden is a research fellow and assistant instructor at The University of Pennsylvania in the Positive Psychology Center, under the direction of Dr. Martin Seligman.Theo D. McCall, PhD, is the chaplain of St Peter's College, an Anglican school for boys in Adelaide, Australia.J. Harold Ellens, PhD, has held 15 pastorates, military and civilian, and taught full-time at Oakland University and as adjunct at Calvin Theological Seminary, Princeton Theological Seminary, Oakland Community College, Wayne County Community College, Wayne State University, and the Ecumenical Theological Seminary.

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