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  Forsaking the Family
Simon Parke

Amazon  RRP £8.99 UK Paperback
Amazon  RRP. $12.99 US Paperback

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Also available as an eBook

We all grow up somewhere. No two families are the same, but everyone experiences them in some way. What everyone doesn’t do, however, is consider the effect of these experiences on the person they become. This lack of awareness can have significant consequences in their future relationships in the world.

Forsaking the family, full of story and illustration, starts by considering the surprising approach of Jesus to his own family – in turns, rude, dismissve and warm. His family values would hardly be applauded today. The book then reflects on how we perceive, understand and grow from our family experiences.

In his search for freedom, Jesus sought always the truth – even in the family, and even at the expense of people’s feelings. He celebrated the good in family, but would not collude in manipulative and negative behaviour from his nearest and dearest.

To what extent are we able to live in honest relationships? How free can we be in relating? Perhaps sometimes, you have to leave the family to find it.

This is a book for those who want to come home.

About the author

Simon Parke was a priest in the Church of England for twenty years, before leaving for fresh adventures. He worked for three years in a supermarket, stacking shelves and working on the till. He was also chair of the shop union. He has since left to go free lance and now writes, leads retreats and offers consultancy.
He has written for The Independent and The Evening Standard and is currently a columnist with the Daily Mail. His weekly supermarket diary, Shelf Life, ran for 15 months in the Mail on Saturday, and he now contributes another weekly column called One-Minute Mystic.

The Beautiful Life – re-issued as The Journey Home – was published by Bloomsbury in 2007. Simon has led a number of retreats around this book and speaks about it on his site.

The book version of Shelf Life was published by Rider in 2009. The book version of One-Minute Mystic was published by Hay House early in 2010 and One-Minute Mindfulness followed in 2011, which has helped many into an understanding of this life-enhancing practice. 

Other books by Simon include Forsaking the Family, which is a refreshingly real and rather shocking look at the sacred cow of family life. This book has now been re-issued by White Crow.

Simon has been a teacher of the Enneagram for 20 years. The enneagram is an ancient path of self-understanding and Simon’s book on the subject, published by Lion, is called Enneagram: a private session with the world’s greatest psychologist.

Another Bloody Retreat is Simon’s desert novel, describing events at the monastery of St James-the-Less set in the sands of Middle Egypt. It follows the fortunes of Abbot Peter and the rest of the community, when the stillness of their sacred setting is rudely and irrevocably shattered.

Simon’s most recent book is Solitude –Recovering the power of alone is published by White Crow.

Simon was born in Sussex but has lived and worked in London for 25 years. He has written comedy and satire for TV - including Spitting Image - and radio, picking up a Sony radio award. He has two grown up children and his hobbies include football, history, the sea and running. For more information or to join his mailing list, visit his website

Publisher: White Crow Books
Published November 2011
100 pages
Size: 229 x 152 mm
ISBN 978-1-907661-51-8
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The Only Planet of Choice: Visitations – Many people use the word ‘Alien’ to describe a visitor from outer space. Extra terrestrial is another word, which is rather more user friendly. For the sake of the question and answer format, the word used by the questioner has been left, though even Tom questions our use of‘Alien’. Should we wish to foster openess between all beings of the Universe perhaps we should also look at our vocabulary? In a discussion between Andrew and Tom many years earlier, Andrew had asked Tom about UFOs and whether they were created manifestations. Tom had replied: “Many of the flying things that you call UFOs come from our place, but they come from other places also, and they do come in physical form. But many of them are not physical. They are like your movie screen”. Read here
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