Get Your Free Audiobook

Non-member price: $12.91

After 30 days, Audible is $16.45/mo. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

Casper ter Kuile, a Harvard Divinity School fellow and cohost of the popular Harry Potter and the Sacred Text podcast, explores how we can nourish our souls by transforming common, everyday practices - yoga, reading, walking the dog - into sacred rituals that can heal our crisis of social isolation and struggle to find purpose.

'After half a decade of research and hundreds of conversations with people around the country, I am convinced we are in the midst of a paradigm shift. That what used to hold us in community no longer works, and that the spiritual offerings of yesteryear no longer help us thrive.' (Casper ter Kuile)

What do Soul Cycle, gratitude journals and tech breaks have in common? For ter Kuile they offer rituals that create the foundation for our modern spiritual lives. 

We are in crisis today. Our modern technological society has left too many of us - no matter our ages - feeling isolated and bereft of purpose. Previous frameworks for building community and finding meaning no longer support us. Yet ter Kuile reveals a hopeful new message: we might not be religious, but that doesn’t mean we are any less spiritual.  

Instead, we are in the midst of a paradigm shift in which we seek belonging and meaning in secular practices. Today, we find connection in:

  • CrossFit and SoulCycle, which offer a sense of belonging rooted in accountability and support much like church groups.
  • Harry Potter and other beloved books that offer universal lessons.
  • Gratitude journals, which have replaced traditional prayer.
  • Tech breaks, which provide mindful moments of calm.

In The Power of Ritual, ter Kuile invites us to deepen these ordinary practices as intentional rituals that nurture connection and well-being. With wisdom and endearing wit, ter Kuile’s call for ritual is ultimately a call to heal our loss of connection to ourselves, to others and to our spiritual identities.

The Power of Ritual reminds us that what we already do every day matters - and has the potential to become a powerful experience of reflection, sanctuary and meaning.

©2020 Casper ter Kuile (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"The Power of Ritual is essential [listening] for anyone interested in how to find meaning in our strange, new world. Bursting with wisdom and compassion, this is the rare book that really might change your life. It has certainly changed mine." (John Green, author of The Fault in Our Stars)

"Casper ter Kuile continues to have his pulse on this generation's search for meaning. Building on the incredible work of How We Gather, The Power of Ritual offers a radical proposition: we decide what's sacred." (Priya Parker, author of The Art of Gathering)

"Casper ter Kuile's book is genuinely wise and utterly useful: it offers you the opportunity to remake your life in small but vital ways that will leave you happier, calmer, and more able to do the work that must be done on this planet. A classic the day it is published!" (Bill McKibben, author of Radio Free Vermont)

What listeners say about The Power of Ritual

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    6
  • 4 Stars
    0
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    5
  • 4 Stars
    0
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Story
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    5
  • 4 Stars
    0
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

THANK YOU CASPER

I know you love reading reviews and while you might not find this one, I wanted to say thank you so much for this incredibly beautiful, wise and insightful book. I loved hearing your voice in the audio book (of course I’m a huge fan of your work on HPST) and this was the salve I desperately needed after the global and personal battles I’ve faced this year. I’m sure many others would agree! I’ve taken a lot from the book, reframed things I already do as sacred rituals and cultivated new habits as spiritual practices. One that I am most excited about has been committing each sunday to drive out of the city to one of the many national parks I am lucky to live close to, listening to a different album start to finish in the car, anything that I loved as a teenager so I can revisit some of those memories. Once I’m off the freeway I’ll stop for coffee and to get a sandwich and then the rest of the day is spent alone in nature, hiking and exploring the most beautiful landscapes, no email, no news. This has been especially healing as I actually grew up in one of these national parks, so it’s a place very dear to my heart and very familiar, but as a child my experiences and memories of this magical landscape were tainted by abuse and trauma. The last few years I’ve been paralysed by PTSD, depression, agoraphobia and panic as I process all of those experiences in therapy. I’ve barely gotten out of bed all year so having something to look forward to each Sunday with no social pressures, to return to my own core self, has been so magical and I am so eternally grateful to you for writing this book in such an accessible, generous and welcoming way. I’ll be buying it for many friends this christmas and I’m already looking forward to making a ritual of re-reading (or relistening) to this book to rejuvenate that feeling of inspiration and connection. Thank you Casper!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

loved this

I loved this book, it makes the idea of creating a community and reconnecting with yourself so accessible.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for S. E. Wilson
  • S. E. Wilson
  • 22-09-2020

Fascinating

Read a review of this in The Independent newspaper and so thought I’d give it a go. Whilst buy the Kindle version I accidentally also bought the Audible version which has been the way I have “read” it whilst travelling. Casper’s voice, unlike some authors, is lovely to listen to and adds to the words. I hope to carry through the ideas in the book in to my day to day, but as Casper writes, some I do already, unwittingly! I would certainly recommend this book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for ElisapMatthews
  • ElisapMatthews
  • 02-11-2020

Disjointed

I love listening to Casper he has a great voice and I like a lot of the ideas in the book but does feel it goes off unnecessary tangents, this book although it tries not to it's definitely comes from a point of privilege he does say the everything all look different for everyone but doesn't point to any examples and you bring me into it his own example of taking a break from technology or from what it seems to me you life on Friday to Saturday as a mum I don't have time to do nothing for 24 hrs and some more accessible ideas or examples would have been nice and of the things he said where hard to understand what was really being talked about. I agree with another review I saw that is you cut alot out this can be an article. I loved all the stories about his childhood but where they really necessary? think I need to listen a few more times to really get this book

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jessica
  • Jessica
  • 12-08-2020

I really loved this book

I feel like I’ve been slowly developing a lot of the ideas in this book independently. Modern life often feels empty of meaning, and I’ve found myself wanting to mark the seasons or create new traditions. It was such a relief to read a book that not only proposed these very ideas, but provided practical advice on how to actually do them. I also really liked the warmth and intelligence with which the book was written. I will be listening to this again to take notes!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Andrew Bradley
  • Andrew Bradley
  • 23-06-2020

Lovely Lockdown Listen for Life-Reappraisal

This book couldn't have come at a better time! Author Casper ter Kuile not only examines issues such as loneliness, overcoming tech addiction and the profound feeling of dissatisfaction/disconnection from modern life which so many people are feeling currently. He also explores all sorts of practical and easy rituals you can carry out in your own home (perfect for lockdown!) from new ways to approach your favourite books or films, to meditation, small, local pilgrimages and even turning workouts into something divine! I'd really recommend this book for all ages, from teenagers to the retired. Casper makes his case for a more ritualistic approach to life in a refreshingly informal and personal way, whilst still packing in loads of interesting facts and figures, with a fun sense of humour and an endearing level of honesty! The perfect lockdown listen to make you review your life in a more positive, new light - he's got a lovely voice to listen to, too, including a couple of moments of singing!

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.