In The Land Of Shiva: A Memoir Kindle Edition
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- ASIN : B00L3OVXZS
- Publisher : Leandros Publishing; 1st edition (June 17, 2014)
- Publication date : June 17, 2014
- Language : English
- File size : 1196 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 328 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 0991241606
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #2,078,459 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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As a midwestern Catholic Brother, teacher and leader in his community now living in India and Nepal, O'Hara comes face to face with the external challenges of the new and different life of the region. He weaves a technicolored tapestry of the sights, sounds and smells of what life as a foreigner is like in India/Nepal. Through anecdotes, colorful characters and his own internal dialogue, O'Hara gives the reader a first hand true experience of that life.
I raced through the last 100 pages as his spiritual journey culminated, watching O'Hara - with the help of his co-conspirators of palm readers, swamis and gurus - evolve from a dogmatic devotee into the universal spiritualist he would become.
He tells his story with respect for all belief systems, people and cultures, keeping the profound and possibly sensitive topic of religious transformation light and full of good humor.
Although unique, this is an all too human journey we can all relate to; introspection, strife, and conflict leading to metamorphosis and evolution. A coming of age story for any age and any soul.
His prose is excellent. His device of alternating his descriptions with summaries of letters mailed to his superior is totally effective.
One might expect a narrative of this time period to focus on doctrinal disputes within the Church, but Jim avoids excessive theory very nicely by keeping all material at a level of personal experience and personal reaction. We readers are left to react with him about his experiences, and to reflect on how religion and spirituality connect to each other. And we are privileged to learn about personal and ritual observances in the field and what it must have been like to be a personal example to others, all day and every day.
Jim's book is as un-dogmatic and matter of fact as could be imagined. It deserves to be a best seller.
I immediately read it twice and gave copies to friends.
I was among the many reader who have written here that they were not able to put the book down once they started reading it. Reading the book took me back to my younger years when I was around Jim’s house all the time. Many years have gone by and reading the book, I realized that Jim and I took opposite roads on our journey in life but reached the same destination further strengthening the message that Jim has for the readers of his book.
While Jim came to India and Nepal to serve god’s mission, I came to the US to find my purpose, my destiny and a better future. Born in a Hindu family in the country where Buddha was born and educated in a Jesuit school where Joe (who is mentioned in the book and was my moral science teacher, Paul who was my Chemistry teacher and Del who was our the librarian), I embarked onto an unknown world trying to build my own identity when I came to the US.
I attended mass with Jim’s congregation while following the Hindu faith as my primary faith. I can honestly say that while my shortcomings are my own, both of these religions as well as Buddhism has played a profound role in shaping me into who I am today and like the author, I have gained so much my keeping an open mind and listening to your heart. “Ultimately, all authority outside yourself is inadequate and you must follow your own deepest call”. I could not have said it any better for my own life.
When people ask me for some pointers when they are going to visit Nepal, I always tell them, “you will most likely come back a changed person”. Many come back and tell me that they are in fact changed. Nepal does that to you. Jim provides a great illustration of the profound change and a soulful reclamation that this part of the world helps one achieve. May be the reason why as I get older, I miss home quite a bit, not that I think any less of my home in the NW .
My father was genuinely very fond of Jim. He was my father’s favorite. Growing up, I looked up to Jim. While Jim went to Nepal from the US and I came to the US from Nepal, my love for god was also pouring all of my energy into seeking truth and I am at peace knowing that I can trust it to point my life into the right direction.
At times I find myself lost in my childhood and replay the journey that I have taken in my life while holding a guitar in my hand. During those times, I sometimes think of Jim because holding my guitar, my other best friend would perhaps mean less to me if Jim had not given me my first guitar!
If you are beginning the spiritual journey into unknown territory and are held back by Institutional religious beliefs, read this book.