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Beyond the Mirror: Reflections on Life and Death

3.72  ·  Rating Details ·  87 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
With searing honesty Henri J. M. Nouwen describes the events leading up to his near fatal accident and recalls the transformative experience at the portal of death. Beyond the Mirror helps us contact the powerful reality of unconditional love that Nouwen experienced as he touched eternity. His insight inspires us to live our lives freely with confidence and trust that we b ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published September 1st 2001 by The Crossroad Publishing Company (first published 1990)
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Reed
Oct 08, 2007 Reed rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The book's shortcomings are in its brevity, too much of which is devoted to the inspiration for the book instead of the thoughts Nouwen is intending to relate.

I love Nouwen's writing and would normally give unconditional praise, especially to what was so obviously a personal work for him. However, the real result of the book is the reminded that when faced with our own mortality, we must decided what we will see beyond it. And such a message might fit more appropriately as a chapter in a larger
...more
Ryan Febrian
Nov 10, 2015 Ryan Febrian rated it it was amazing
Ada hal yang menarik dari sebuah cermin. Konon, Para pendongeng memahami kekuatan cermin untuk menangkap imajinasi anak-anak, untuk menuntun mereka masuk kedalam dunia misteri. Kita memandang kedalam cermin untuk memandang apa yang ingin kita lihat, untuk menemukan siapa kita sebenarnya. Sang ratu dalam cerita Snow White meminta nasihat cerminnya untuk mencari penguatan siapa dirinya, “Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the fairest on of all? (Cermin, cermin, di dinding, siapakah yang paling ca ...more
Dolly
Dec 23, 2014 Dolly rated it really liked it
Henri Nouwen's character, as revealed in his writing, has always touched me. He is so human, like the rest of us. Not a saint, except in my definition of saint as someone who loves God and tries to be good and kind to others. In which case, aren't most of us saints? This book is the story of an accident that happened to Nouwen. While walking along an icy road he was struck by the right-side rearview mirror of a van, an accident that caused his spleen to bleed out profusely. While in the hospital ...more
Massanutten Regional Library
Daniel, Central patron, June 2016, 4 stars:

In this personal account of a near-death experience, Nouwen shares his thoughts and emotions in his typical vulnerable way. The narrative takes an unexpected twist halfway through after Nouwen survives an intense surgery -- the twist is not so much an external one as an internal one that might confuse readers as it must have done Nouwen's friends who read it. But in the midst of that confusion is a rare and valuable insight.
Nathan Hobby
Jan 03, 2010 Nathan Hobby rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who are scared of dying
A very short book - you could probably read it in an hour. Nouwen tells simply the story of how he got knocked over by a car one morning and nearly died. He reflects on what it felt to be near death and the comforting presence of Christ he felt. There are several worthwhile insights he shares from his experience, but less than I hoped for from such a spiritual giant as he. He published this in 1990 and died for real in 1996.
Lee Pfahler
Feb 27, 2014 Lee Pfahler rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Henri Nouwen
A bit thin on length(70 pages)and depth into his thoughts on surviving from an accident which nearly killed him, yet profound nonetheless by his assertion that he felt more freedom and at peace while in the hospital due to coming to the realization more than ever before in his busy life that he is unconditionally loved by God which means he can now "be sent into the world to speak and to act as Jesus did." (58)
Val
I love Nouwen's compelling work, and this is his short autobiographical account of evens surrounding an auto accident that should have killed him and his reflections (as ever profound) on what it is to live life redeemed beyond death. it is an examination and reflecction on "to live is Christ, to die is gain."
Joel
Sep 12, 2010 Joel rated it liked it
Henri Nouwen is an amazing guy. He talks at length about his accident, where he is hit by a car on a simple walk to work. In this moment of apparent suffering, Nouwen feels an invasion of peace. There are interesting ideas on "dying to oneself", seeking fulfillment in Christ, and thoughouts on how others react to death.
Kati
Dec 20, 2016 Kati rated it liked it
Why is it so difficult to maintain the clarity of catastrophe in our daily lives? I don't know and neither does Mr. Nouwen but this brief book about his near-death experience report on the peace, love and meaning he felt near death and deals very briefly with the hope of carrying those lessons forward in his restored health.
Dean Anderson
Sep 05, 2012 Dean Anderson rated it really liked it
Wonderful little book about Nouwen's near death experience. An illustration of Philippians 1:21 - 26. (And strangely, it reminded me of "Buffy the Vampire: Season 6", when everyone rejoices in her return from the dead, while she finds herself longing for heaven.)
Wade
Jan 01, 2013 Wade rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian-living
A short book which Nouwen wrote after a near death experience… it reads almost like a journal of someone saying, “Here are the significant things in life that I started to think about once I realized that I was possibly about to die.”
Marcus
Nov 21, 2012 Marcus rated it liked it
An interesting book. Not quite as profound as I had hoped. I may need to reread this to see if I missed a lot of deep truth.
Albert Hong
Jul 02, 2014 Albert Hong rated it it was ok
Shelves: spirituality
It feels like Nouwen is trying to communicate a profound truth that he experienced, but it is hard to fully grasp his sentiments.
Sanne
Oct 18, 2012 Sanne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Heeft me wat inzichten gegeven in het voorportaal van de dood en ook wat inzichten in wat ik moet veranderen in mijn leven.
Erica
Jul 17, 2007 Erica rated it it was amazing
Beautiful. I seem to overuse that word in describing books I enjoy. But, sometimes it just fits. I love reading Nouwen. So powerful, yet very very gentle.
Dianeparente62gmail.com
Jul 21, 2013 Dianeparente62gmail.com rated it really liked it
Reflections on a life-threatening accident and lessons learned from it resulting in a new awareness that is helpful to him and the reader
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Nov 07, 2008
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Henri Jozef Machiel Nouwen (Nouen), (1932–1996) was a Dutch-born Catholic priest and writer who authored 40 books on the spiritual life.

Nouwen's books are widely read today by Protestants and Catholics alike. The Wounded Healer, In the Name of Jesus, Clowning in Rome, The Life of the Beloved, and The Way of the Heart are just a few of the more widely recognized titles. After nearly two decades of
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