The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


'An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith'

Book explores formal and informal spiritual practices

Barbara Brown Taylor calls her book a field guide to spiritual practices: “My life depends on ignoring all touted distinctions between the secular and the sacred, the physical and the spiritual, the body and the soul. What is saving my life now is becoming more fully human, trusting that there is no way to God, apart from real life in the real world.”

An Altar in the World book coverTaylor is a professor of religion at Piedmont College, Demorest, Ga., and also teaches spirituality at Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, Ga.

She presents formal and informal spiritual practices that will help deepen our humanity and broaden our connection with others.

Along the way, she shares many colorful vignettes and ponders the experiencesof some well-known biblical characters.

In addition to keeping the Sabbath, walking meditation and prayer, she covers blessings, living with purpose and encountering others in community (HarperOne, 2009).


Clint Schnekloth

Clint Schnekloth

Posted at 4:22 pm (U.S. Eastern) 3/24/2009

I have been reading one essay from this book each evening, and it simply so winning. Although I have not "left" the church in any way similar to Taylor, I do very much appreciate her helping us see the sacred in the daily and mundane. I am happy to continue on the journey with her, and love her books.

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February issue


Embracing diversity