In this provocative and insightful new book, psychologist Michael Eigen presents a phenomenology of ecstatic states. Ecstasy is a force to be reckoned with -- sometimes creative, sometimes destructive. Eigen argues that there is an ecstasy that comes through the ever-necessary confrontation of our psychic cores with suffering and degradation, and he shows that when we can learn to be present with these feelings, they add to the tone and texture of our lives, and help us to feel real. The author draws heavily on autobiographical material, psychotherapy sessions, case studies and psychoanalytic thinking, along with literary and biblical sources, demonstrating his reputation as one of the leading creative thinkers among psychotherapists in America. The result is an extremely intelligent, lyrical work, which succeeds in being theoretically well-informed without being pedantic. Written as a subjective first-hand account, Ecstasy will appeal to psychotherapists as well as to readers and students interested in spirituality and philosophy.