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Silence and Beauty

Hidden Faith Born of Suffering
Narrated by: Ova Saopeng
Length: 9 hrs and 44 mins

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Publisher's Summary

In this world of pain and suffering, God often seems silent. But light is yet present in darkness, and silence speaks with hidden beauty and truth.

Shusaku Endo's novel Silence, first published in 1966, endures as one of the greatest works of 20th-century Japanese literature. Its narrative of the persecution of Christians in 17th-century Japan raises uncomfortable questions about God and the ambiguity of faith in the midst of suffering and hostility.

Endo's Silence took visual artist Makoto Fujimura on a pilgrimage of grappling with the nature of art, the significance of pain, and his own cultural heritage. His artistic faith journey overlaps with Endo's as he uncovers deep layers of meaning in Japanese history and literature, expressed in art both past and present. He finds connections to how faith is lived amid trauma and glimpses of how the Gospel is conveyed in Christ-hidden cultures.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2017 Intervarsity (P)2017 Oasis Audio

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  • M. Burlingame
  • 26-02-18

A unique book of history and reflections

A fascinating book filled with deep relections! It isn’t the usual story that proceeds linearly with a monotonic theme. Fujimura moves around discussing Endo and his book, Silence, the history behind it, and Scorsese’s movie which took some 20 years to produce. His reflections on Japanese culture and how it has been shaped by the 17th century persecution of Christians, WWII, and Western materialism, are profoundly helpful in understanding this unique island nation. Read Fujimura’s book; stay with him as he wanders though many subjects. You will be rewarded like enjoying a work of modern art.

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  • Chloe
  • 16-02-17

Refreshing perspective

What made the experience of listening to Silence and Beauty the most enjoyable?

I enjoy that Makoto fujimura explored doubt and faith in a healthy way. As often times those two things are at enmity in our minds. Christianity grounded in reality. It was very therapeutic.

What other book might you compare Silence and Beauty to and why?

I wouldn't compare this to anything I've ever read.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Robert H.
  • 03-09-19

Nuggets of wisdom

Very interesting history of some of the persecution of Christians in Japan but beyond that it delves into "faith kept despite obstacles". The cultural aspect was conveyed with detail and stories brought it to life. Lots of philosophical nuggets of wisdom that are perks for any person regardless of faith or denomination. Perserverance in all things was the underlying theme. Very enjoyable narrator and good pronunciation. I love AUDIBLE versus reading because I can do things while listening but one of the downfalls frequently is the narrators butchering the language of the story. I have listened to books with a Japanese theme but many times the narrator was like nails on a chalkboard with how they pronounced even the easiest Japanese words. This narrator was a joy to listen to. I rarely listen to a book twice but this one is on my repeat list.

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  • Peter Y C.
  • 16-09-18

Beautiful and Thoughtfull

I loved this book - and the narration was perfect for communicating it's essence.

Being a Christian, and having been to Japan (Tokyo) on a business trip, I've always wondered what makes up this incredible, fascinating culture. Fujimura, with his deep analysis, artistic insight, really helps us "aliens" (the classification for non-Japanese in the airport when you visit), gain an inside view of the Japanese mind, and in light of the gospel.

This book will make you think deeply of not only the particular topic at hand (Christianity's history in Japan) but on life itself.

Highly recommended.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 24-07-18

Thought provoking review.

Lots of personal anecdotes on the subject of how the reviewer sees Japan and Japanese art. There were some gems in the reviewer's theological reflections, though some of "what is called facts" upon which the reflections are made are debatable.