Monday, May 02, 2011

Book Review: The Sacred Journey

Today's book review is a) on a Monday- cuz I feel like it and that whole "being organized on the blog in the new year" thing has started to cramp my style.  I can't hack it.  This is another from The Ancient Practices Series I've been working through reviewing.  There are eight total in the series and this is the fourth I've reviewed.

The Sacred Journey
by Charles Foster

The Sacred Journey is from the eight book series, "The Ancient Practices."  I have been enjoying this entire series quite a bit and looked forward to this installment on the practice of pilgrimage.  Foster uses anecdotes from his life and the lives of those around him, as well as examples from the Bible to outline why we should consider pilgrimage, ideas of where to go and some of the hardships and joys along the way.  He is a seasoned pilgrim with plenty of experience to back up what he is bringing forth.

Since I was a child, I have longed to take a pilgrimage in the Holy Lands (I know, I wasn't a normal child.)  This book stirred up all those emotions in me within the first chapter.  I have begun to yearn anew for that sort of sacred journey. I enjoyed his inclusion of information on the pilgrimages made by those in religions other than Christianity.  Often, we try to segregate ourselves and only compare our religious discipline to that of other Christians.  In actuality, many of the spiritual practices and disciplines that are practiced in the Christian faith are also practiced in others.  Sometimes the others are doing a far better job at it than we are.

That said, I found that there were parts of this book that were hard to follow.  They weren't confusing, but rather they felt redundant.  There were times it felt the author was rambling a bit about his own journeys to simply fill up space in the book.  Perhaps if I were setting off on or just returning from a pilgrimage, I'd have had more patience and attention span for these parts of the book.  Perhaps my husband, who has seen the Holy Land in person might get more out of it, being able to better visualize what the author is talking about.

All in all, while I found this to be the weakest of this series so far, it was still a worthwhile read that will wind up on my "keep" shelf.  I have a feeling there will be a day that I will pull it back off the shelf and be fed deeply by it.

To comply with new regulations introduced by the Federal Trade Commission, I need to mention that BookSneeze® has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.

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