Sobering Wisdom: Philosophical Explorations of Twelve Step Spirituality (co-authored with Nicholas Plants)
Drawing on a variety of thinkers from Aristotle to William James and from Nietzsche to Foucault, as well as a diverse range of philosophical perspectives including naturalism, Buddhism, existentialism, Confucianism, pragmatism, and phenomenology, the contributors to this volume address such questions as the relation of personal responsibility to an acknowledgment of powerlessness, the existence of a "higher power," and the role of virtue in recovery. Ranging in tone from deeply scholarly to intensely personal, their essays are written in an accessible way for a broad audience that includes not only philosophers, theologians, and psychologists but also spiritual directors, health professionals, and addiction counselors. Perhaps most important, the book is also conceived for those involved in Twelve Step programs whose lives are being transformed by the experience.
In the Throe of Wonder: Intimations of the Sacred in a Post-Modern World
This book is a meditation on the experiences of wonder, horror, and awe, and an exploration of their ontological import. It argues that these experiences are not, as our culture often presumes, merely subjective, emotive responses to events that happen in the world. Rather, they are transformative experiences that fracture our ordinary lives and, in so doing, provide us access to realities of which we would otherwise be oblivious. Wonder, horror, and awe, like the experiences of love and death to which they are so intimately related, are not events that happen in our world but events that happen to it and thus alter our life as a whole. Miller explores the impact of that transformation ― its deconstructive effect on our ordinary sense of our selves, and the breakthrough to a new understanding of being which it makes possible.
The Way of Suffering: A Geography of Crisis
This book can best be described as an extended meditation on suffering, phenomenological in method and dialectical in point of view. The angle Miller takes is that of moral self-examination rather that conventional scholarly inquiry, and his aim is to think through and evaluate a fundamental claim of our culture, from Aeschylus to Solzhenitsyn, that suffering is the greatest spiritual teacher.
This is a demanding book, as exhilarating as it is relentless in its unmasking of the evasions and duplicities with which we shore up our day-to-day lives. The late William F. Lynch, SJ, author of Christ and Apollo, called it "a profoundly moral study of man." To read it is to risk changing your life.
“Toward a Psychoanalysis of Passion” in Memories and Monsters: Psychology, Trauma, and Narrative, edited by Eric R. Severson and David M. Goodman. New York: Routledge, 2018.
“Historicity and Normative Order” in Lonergan Workshop, Volume 18, edited by Fred Lawrence. Boston College, 2005.
“Deconstruction and Suffering: The Way to the Ethical” in Transitions in Continental Philosophy, edited by Arleen B. Dallery and Stephen H. Watson. Albany: State University Press of New York, 1994.
“The Way of Suffering: A Reasoning of the Heart” in The Existence of God edited by John R. Jacobson and Robert Lloyd Mitchell. Lewiston, New York: Edwin Mellen Press, 1988.