- Hardcover: 272 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster (November 3, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0684848384
- ISBN-13: 978-0684848389
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1 x 9.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,707,706 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Sacred America: The Emerging Spirit of the People Hardcover – November 3, 1999
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Roger Housden was researching a book on the survival of the sacred in India when a floating thought settled smack in front of his third eye. "India for all its living spiritual wisdom, is not the land that holds the seal of the sacred for the next millennium," he realized. "That country is America." From then on, Housden, a native of Britain, began his quest to document the spiritual breadth and depth of America. Some of his fascinating destinations include a native Sun Dance at the Crow Fair powwow in Montana, a Rosh Hashanah retreat in the Catskill Mountains of New York, and a catholic Easter celebration in Old New Mexico.
Rather than dryly cataloging all the spiritual diversity that America hosts, Housden allows himself to truly spend time with the people and places he visits. As a result, his reflections carry the substance of a wise man who dwells with people and ideas, asking penetrating questions and listening attentively. As a result, this is armchair pilgrimage at its best--offering keen insight and rich storytelling to grasp "one of the most spiritually vibrant cultures on earth." --Gail Hudson
From Publishers Weekly
Housden, a British author and leader of spiritually oriented tours, here narrates his personal journey through the religious landscape of the United States. His tourAa clockwise circle from Billings, Mont., to San FranciscoAdoes not claim to be exhaustive. He does not seek out conservative Christians, Mormons or Hasidic Jews (although he does meet a man expelled from the Lubavitcher rabbinate for promoting LSD). Housden's sacred America embraces instead the mystics, seekers and individualists of American religion. Many are like himself: New Age entrepreneurs making a living through inspirational speaking or corporate retreats. Others have started nonprofit organizations to bring prayer to prisons or introduce troubled youths to Nobel Peace Prize laureates, or have founded meditation retreats along the continuum between Thomas Merton and D.T. Suzuki. Still others are ordinary people possessed by a passion for Rumi or a conviction that God is working through them. Housden's account is brisk and readable but short on context and analysis. The distinctive qualities of different confessions blend together, although the reader may not be convinced that Housden has observed a single national "spirit." Framed by his very personal response to everything he encounters (at one Midwestern meditation center he weeps for the death of Princess Diana), the book reads like an unedited travel diary of a likable, curious, slightly starry-eyed visitor. (Nov.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.