The Fire and the Rose: The Wedding of Spirituality and Sexuality

Bud Harris, Ph.D.

Chiron Publications,  September 2007

Our encounters with love, spirituality, and sexuality play a major role in shaping who we are. These powerful aspects of our lives are woven into the pattern that forms our potential for wholeness. Through growing consciousness, sexuality and spirituality can support our efforts to live more passionately and to understand love in all of its forms. In this stimulating and inspiring book, Jungian analyst Bud Harris challenges us to reconsider our views of spirituality and sexuality as opposites and bring them into harmony and creativity. Together, we can heal some of our culture's great wounds of the soul.

paperback | ISBN: 9781888602425 | Publication Date: September 2007

"The Fire and the Rose: The Wedding of Spirituality and Sexuality is a powerful, sensitive, loving, personal, and understandable depth plunge into the two most misunderstood and abused topics of our day. Anyone honest enough to admit struggling with spirituality and sexuality in our day would benefit greatly from this excellent work and its practical suggestions. It is not a "fix it" work with easy answers, but rather ideas to challenge, teach, and point directions toward becoming transformed."
--G. Keith Parker, Ph.D., Jungian analyst and pastoral counselor, author of Seven Cherokee Myths

"An admirer of Bud Harris's Sacred Selfishness, I have read his new work, The Fire and the Rose, three times now and find something fresh and necessary to my life in each reading. Dr. Harris is generous with his personal history, widely read, and deeply involved in the human journey. He is a healer in words and stories."
--Gail Godwin, Ph.D., Novelist and author of Father Melancholy's Daughter and Evensong

"Bud Harris as spiritual guide suggests that when life becomes stagnant and congealed, most often sexuality brings a new crisis fraught with the high cost and great promise of the fire of the numinous. The desire that seems to be wrecking our lives may well be the Self awakening us to Soul and the Divine. Such uncomfortable and disturbing occasions at any age open us to a frightening and elusive link between the sensual and the spiritual. The choice, Harris proposes, is dead soul, addiction, or discovering those questions that keep us alive and thirsty."
--Reverend Dr. Bill Dols, Creator and editor of the Bible Workbench, co-author of Finding Jesus, Discovering Self: Passages to Healing and Wholeness

"A deeply soulful book written from the heart, filled with wisdom, intimate personal sharing, challenging questions, and insights into the wonders and mysteries of sexuality and spirituality. This book is significant for all of us, and a timely resource for psychotherapists and spiritual directors. Bud is a master teacher, the perfect guide for the journey of living an authentic life. I can't wait to share this book with others, especially my clients."
--Gail Vaughn Rogers, M.A. Psychotherapist, retreat leader, associate editor of the Bible Workbench

"Dr. Bud Harris, Jungian analyst and writer, has covered the topic of sexuality, love, inner conflict, and transformation in his readable and personal book, The Fire and the Rose. Quoting Eleanor Roosevelt, Dostoevsky, Rilke, Gail Godwin, and Jung, among many others, he explores with humility and wisdom the tension spirituality and sexuality bring to individuals, couples, and societies. Without declaring easy answers, Dr. Harris reminds one of the complexity of the psyche, the need to continue to live with rather than fix suffering, and the numinosity tremendum of our journey toward a paradoxical, unique life. He has added points of discussion at the end of several chapters as well as helpful guidelines in dealing with dreams. Buried in Dr. Harris's conclusion are four points of truth he has discovered along his way -- they are indisputable, substantial, and alone worth the read. I highly recommend this book."
--Tess Castleman, M.A., L.P.C., Jungian analyst, author of Threads, Knots, Tapestries

"Our ancestors considered Eros a god; Jung once defined a neurosis as "a neglected god." In The Fire and the Rose, Bud Harris addresses this neurotic split between divinity and the body, between spirit and matter, and proffers a path of reconciliation and reclamation of sexuality as a vital link to a fuller expression of spirit. Full of personal confession, case examples, and exercises, this work offers both theoretic and practical tips to personal and cultural healings."
--James Hollis, Ph.D., Jungian analyst, author of Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life

"Bud Harris generously shares how his deepest early wound began a struggle to redefine perceptions of God and to make tough choices about money, vocation, family, and authentic relationship to Self and community.

Bud sees spirituality as the driving force that moves us into a life connected to something greater than ourselves and desire as awakening the soul, ridding us of fear, and nourishing us during our lifelong journey "of becoming." He encourages us to question the contradictions in our lives and to expand the questions beyond what is safe and secure.

Always accessible to the reader, Harris uses examples from fairy tales to show that often "doing the wrong things transforms life for the better." His candid recounting of personal challenges and those of his clients help us define what it is to be human . . . all the wrong decisions we make and the courage it takes to change. He suggests solutions: to journal, to record nighttime dreams, and to understand metaphor in religion, literature, and myth as a source of wisdom. He challenges us to create joyful, passionate, and meaningful lives leading to repeated transformation. "
--Charlotte M. Mathes, Ph.D., Jungian analyst, author of And a Sword Shall Pierce Your Heart

"This book is studded with examples of healing junctures at which the soul's desire for wholeness breaks through and turns out to be decisive in the battle to live more fully, more ethically, and more forcefully. Bud Harris uncovers private desires that often go unspoken for by the depth psychologists, even though they hear about them daily in the dreams and situations that drive individuals into therapy. Although this Jungian analyst recognizes the paradoxical sacredness of the desire to break any preestablished mold for the soul, his is not a book filled with prescriptions to abandon the constraints of the moral sense to the pleasures of wholeness. Rather, he invites the reader to meander in the labyrinth of the Self and there to engage with one's particular monster. His wise counsel, to live the paradox of freedom through honest engagement with the shadow, is the Ariadne thread of a mature anima. Those who are willing to peruse these pages with the same care their author has brought to writing them will have a safe enough journey -- not perhaps into heroic mastery, but certainly into the embrace of life itself."
--John Beebe, M.D., Jungian analyst, author of Integrity in Depth