Belden C. Lane's Backpacking with the Saints: Wilderness Hiking as Spiritual PDF

By Belden C. Lane

ISBN-10: 0199927812

ISBN-13: 9780199927814

Wearing in basic terms uncomplicated camping out gear and a set of the world's nice non secular writings, Belden C. Lane embarks on solitary non secular treks throughout the Ozarks and around the American Southwest. For partners, he has in simple terms such academics as Rumi, John of the move, Hildegard of Bingen, Dag Hammarskjöld, and Thomas Merton, and as he walks, he engages their writings with the common wonders he encounters--Bell Mountain desert with Søren Kierkegaard, Moonshine hole with Thich Nhat Hanh--demonstrating how being on my own within the wild opens a unprecedented view onto one's inside panorama, and the way the saints' writings show the divine in nature.

The self-discipline of backpacking, Lane indicates, is a metaphor for a religious trip. simply because the desolate tract provided revelations to the early desolate tract Christians, backpacking hones the most important religious talents: being attentive, touring mild, training silence, and workout ask yourself. Lane engages the perform not just with quite a lot of non secular writings--Celtic, Catholic, Protestant, Buddhist, Hindu, and Sufi Muslim--but with the fascination of alternative fanatics of the backcountry, from John Muir and Ed Abbey to invoice Plotkin and Cheryl Strayed. during this intimate and down-to-earth narrative, backpacking is proven to be a non secular perform that enables the invention of God amidst the wonder and unforeseen terrors of nature. Adoration, Lane indicates, is the main acceptable human reaction to what we can't clarify, yet have still discovered to like.

An captivating narrative for Christians of all denominations, Backpacking with the Saints is an inspiring exploration of ways solitude, simplicity, and mindfulness are illuminated and inspired by means of the self-discipline of backcountry wandering, and of ways the barren region itself turns into a manner of knowing-an ecology of the soul.

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Additional resources for Backpacking with the Saints: Wilderness Hiking as Spiritual Practice

Example text

To be surrounded by a singing, mating, howling commotion of other species, all of which love their lives as much as we do ours, and none of which could possibly care less about us in our place. It reminds us that our plans are small and somewhat absurd. It reminds us why, in those cases in which our plans might influence many future generations, we ought to choose carefully. Looking out on a clean plank of planet earth, we can get shaken right down to the bone by the bronze-eyed possibility of lives that are not our own.

A mothering God who commands the work for justice holds everything in her hand. The storm-swept top of Lindsay Mountain, the black bear coming through the brush, the economic threats facing the land and its people—all these elicit the fearlessness that John Climacus expected of his desert monks. In late antiquity the practice of aphobia provoked controversy. It made the Desert Fathers politically dangerous. Not a few of them were draft dodgers and tax resisters, sought out by magistrates who tracked them into the desert.

Vignette 1. Bell Mountain: John Bunyan on Simplicity It is late October and I’m bushwhacking my way down a ridge in the Bell Mountain Wilderness Area toward a ribbon of water sheltered by yellow and orange maple trees in the hollow below. I’ll camp there beside Shut-in Creek tonight, falling asleep to the sound of running water. I may wake to the cries of coyotes in the night. But I’ll recognize familiar stars and go back to sleep with the contentment that only wilderness affords. Half of the beauty in coming here is the simplicity it demands.

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Backpacking with the Saints: Wilderness Hiking as Spiritual Practice by Belden C. Lane


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