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Altar in the World, An: A Geography of Faith [Hardcover]

By Barbara Brown Taylor (Author)
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Item description for Altar in the World, An: A Geography of Faith by Barbara Brown Taylor...

The author of Leaving Church continues the account of her personal spiritual journey while counseling readers on how to encounter the sacred in everyday life, describing how to render a typical routine more relevant and sharing recommendations for intensive prayer and meditation. 50,000 first printing.

Publishers Description

In her critically acclaimed Leaving Church ("a beautiful, absorbing memoir."—Dallas Morning News), Barbara Brown Taylor wrote about leaving full-time ministry to become a professor, a decision that stretched the boundaries of her faith. Now, in her stunning follow-up, An Altar in the World, she shares how she learned to encounter God beyond the walls of any church.

From simple practices such as walking, working, and getting lost to deep meditations on topics like prayer and pronouncing blessings, Taylor reveals concrete ways to discover the sacred in the small things we do and see. Something as ordinary as hanging clothes on a clothesline becomes an act of devotion if we pay attention to what we are doing and take time to attend to the sights, smells, and sounds around us. Making eye contact with the cashier at the grocery store becomes a moment of true human connection. Allowing yourself to get lost leads to new discoveries. Under Taylor's expert guidance, we come to question conventional distinctions between the sacred and the secular, learning that no physical act is too earthbound or too humble to become a path to the divine. As we incorporate these practices into our daily lives, we begin to discover altars everywhere we go, in nearly everything we do.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: HarperOne
Pages   240
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.5" Width: 5.52" Height: 0.88"
Weight:   0.74 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Feb 10, 2009
Publisher   HarperOne
ISBN  0061370460  
ISBN13  9780061370465  

Availability  0 units.

More About Barbara Brown Taylor

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Barbara Brown Taylor is an Episcopal priest. She holds the Harry R. Butman Chair in Religion and Philosophy at Piedmont College in northeastern Georgia and serves as adjunct professor of Christian spirituality at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur. Recognized as one of the twelve most effective preachers in the English language by Baylor University in 1995, Taylor has published numerous collections of her sermons and theological reflections, including Mixed Blessings, The Preaching Life, Speaking of Sin, Bread of Angels, Home By Another Way, and Gospel Medicine. Information about Barbara Brown Taylor's speaking engagements can be found on her website: http: //

Barbara Brown Taylor currently resides in the state of Georgia.

Barbara Brown Taylor has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Dan Josselyn Memorial Publication (Paperback)
  2. Feasting on the Word
  3. Lyman Beecher Lectures on Preaching

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > General
2Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs > Leaders & Notable People > Religious
3Books > Subjects > Biographies & Memoirs
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality

Christian Product Categories
Books > Christian Living > Practical Life > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Altar in the World, An: A Geography of Faith?

Another great book!  May 4, 2010
Barbara Brown Taylor is gifted with an elegant style that reaches into my heart and soul. I enjoy reading her in bed right before I retire for the night. Her thoughts are pleasantly provoking as I lie in the dark awaiting slumber.
God is right under our feet  Apr 5, 2010
Barbara Brown Taylor explores twelve practices for finding God "right under our feet." I find this book an amazing exploration of faith in life. Her chapter on "The Practice of Saying No: The Sabbath" is the best argument for keeping the sabbath that I have read.

The caveat that Taylor begins with is one that some may ignore: "The practices in this book grow from my long immersion in the practices of Christian faith." The wisdom in this book is not meant to say that one can be a Christian without the church. It is meant to say that being a Christian is more than just "going to church." Being a Christian is noticing God where we are. It is a wisdom borne out of the feeling, the itch, that experiencing God is more than organized religion offers.
A multitude of approaches  Mar 25, 2010
In 12 brief chapters, Barbara Taylor addresses twelve ways of living with God, not so much as devotion, but as daily practice. She shows an easy familiarity with ordinary objects and actions as means of being closer to God. Each chapter stands alone, can be read quickly, and then digested for a day or week. Some of it will speak to you, some will show you what others experience. It is an enriching book for people of faith.
Solid but nothing to get excited about  Mar 24, 2010
I've read and admired Barbara Brown Taylor for years. She's one of my favorite sermon writers. I've even been fortunate enough to hear her lecture a group of preachers. I was delighted to see that she had another book out, and it's a good read, but it seemed mainly to repeat ideas I've heard from her before. If you haven't read her before, I'd recommend beginning with The Preaching Life -- which contains both personal stories and sermons -- rather than this book of reflections.
A Book To Cuddle With  Mar 21, 2010
An Altar in the World - A Geography of Faith - by Barbara Brown Taylor is akin to putting on a sweatshirt, your sweatpants and a pair of clean warm socks on a cold winter night - It's a bundle of warmth and comfort.I particularly adored this excerpt:

"To become fully human means learning to turn my gratitude for being alive into some concrete common good. It means growing gentler toward human weakness. It means practicing forgiveness of my and everyone else's hourly failures to live up to divine standards. It means learning to forget myself on a regular basis in order to attend to the other selves in my vicinity. It means that living so that "I'm only human" does not become an excuse for anything. It means receiving the human condition as blessing and not curse, in all its achingly frail and redemptive reality."pp.117-118

I simply adore the way Barbara expresses herself with language, her insights, experiences and her story-telling ability. You savor this book like a hot cup of tea.

Get comfortable. Sip this book. Cuddle and cradle it. Enjoy!

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