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Arching Backward

The Mystical Initiation of a Contemporary Woman

Published by Inner Traditions
Distributed by Simon & Schuster



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About The Book

Arching Backward is the story of an American woman who found herself suddenly and violently immersed in a mystical initiation for which she was not consciously prepared. For four years, Janet Adler's life was dominated by the transforming experience of a primal energy and the visions that were created by it. She was not seeking spiritual experience, nor was she a student of any particular mystical tradition. But the visions brought her into the realm of the sacred, transforming her body into a conduit for spiritual energy. The writings collected here record her visions and describe the way this contemporary woman dealt with the impact of this energy on her physical body, her work, and her relationships. Her story offers a guide for others on this journey and provides a powerful affirmation of women's experience of the spirit.

About The Author

Janet Adler (1941–2023) was the founder of the Discipline of Authentic Movement. She had been teaching and exploring emergent movement in the presence of a witness since 1969. Her archives are housed at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. She is the author of Arching Backward and Offering from the Conscious Body.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Inner Traditions (October 1, 1996)
  • Length: 264 pages
  • ISBN13: 9780892815463

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Raves and Reviews

"Arching Backward is an eloquent and lyrical prose poem, riveting testimony from a modern mystic. Adler offers this narrative of her extraordinary journey, traversing territory both intensely intimate and primordial, luminous and transcendent. This is a heroine's mythic journey, as fascinating as it is mysterious."

– Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence

"Her numerous visions are spread out through the book like so many Tarot cards or photographs with no explanation. The effect is akin to walking through an abstract art gallery. One emerges with a nebulous sense of nerve-jangling impressions, which may be just what Adler, with her austere artistic temperament, intended."

– Shared Transformation

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