On the Road Again by Janet Scott Barlown”We would rather run ourselves down than not tonspeak of ourselves at all. “n—La RochefoucauldnSalvation for Sale: An Insider’s Viewnof Pat Robertson’s Ministry bynGerard Thomas Straub, Buffalo,nNY: Prometheus Books.nIt is a signal of things to come thatnGerard Thomas Straub opens hisnbook Salvation for Sale: An Insider’snView of Pat Robertson’s Ministry withna list of quotations that begins withnMiguel de Unamuno and winds upnwith Woody Allen. It is a big signalnthat the middle of the list (whichnprecedes a Preface that is followed by anPrologue—will this book never start?)nholds a shiny offering from KahlilnGibran.nThis resolutely eclectic collection isnour first peek into the knapsack of anspiritual wanderer. And through thencourse of this book he will return timenand again to his goody bag, there tonfind the extracted thoughts of, amongnmany others, Rollo May, Thomas Jefferson,nW.C. Fields, Thoreau, Gandhi,nand “the German philosophernFriedrich Nietzsche.” These are Mr.nStraub’s souvenirs from a “lifelongnspiritual odyssey,” a quest for Truthnthat has taken him from a “guiltridden”nRoman Catholic boyhood ton”a humanistic philosophy” to an explorationnof “Judaism, Buddhism, andnHinduism” to his current spiritual restingnplace.nHe begins this journey of “torment,nprayer and pain” by calling out, “Whonwas I?” Beats me. Three hundrednpages later he asks, “What am 1?” andnwe resist the temptation to tell him.nNever mind. He’ll tell us. He is not anbeliever in “God”; he is a believer inn”the probable existence of God and thenabsolute importance of searching forn]anet Scott Barlow covers popularnculture from her home in Cincinnati,nOhio.nmy own personal truth.” He believesn”man is a mystery in the midst of anmystery”; that God is a spot on antreasure map and “the spot is everywherenand nowhere”; that “to listen tonand evaluate all the various pieces ofnadvice offered by a diversified multitudenwould lead to a decision thatnmight be founded in wisdom”; thatn”confusion and doubt are natural”;nthat we should all “say it with silence”n(and oh, that the author had lookednharder at that last littie trinket). Innnnother words, Mr. Straub’s beliefs are angrab bag of Eastern mysticism, secularnhumanism, and Shirley MacLaineism.nSort of an offshoot of The UniversenIs So Universal-ism.nPeriodically Mr. Straub pulls hisnhead from his knapsack long enoughnto debate himself on the real definitionnof sin, the real significance of thenBible, and the real “role God wants tonplay.” He also takes time to explain thenmeaning of “authentic Christianity”nand the reason so few Christians graspnit. Coming from a man who has replacednbasic Christian doctrine withnthe idea that God the spot is everywherenand nowhere, this is like beingnlectured by a vegetarian on the propernway to grill a steak. The first questionnhere is. What’s it to you? Since thennature of the author’s thinking preciselynmatches his idea of God, it’s hard tontell. But it has something to do with anmeat eater named Pat Robertson.nOn the road to becoming a mysterynMAY 1987/31n