- Paperback: 264 pages
- Publisher: Orbis Books; 40624th edition (October 31, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1570756163
- ISBN-13: 978-1570756160
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 136 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #91,437 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Walk in a Relaxed Manner: Life Lessons from the Camino Paperback – October 31, 2005
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About the Author
Joyce Rupp is well known for her work as a writer, spiritual midwife and retreat and conference speaker. A member of the Servite community, she has led retreats throughout North America, as well as in Europe, Asia and Africa. Joyce is the author of more than ten bestselling books including, May I Have This Dance?, The Cup of Life, Praying Our Goodbyes, Fresh Bread, Your Sorrow is My Sorrow and The Cosmic Dance.
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I first read `Walk in a Relaxed Manner' while staying at a Homeless Shelter. Every night I read Joyce Rupp's book, helping me sleep easier, drowning out the cries of children and women around me.
After many weeks I realized my walk in the homeless shelter was similar to Joyce Rupp's walk on the Camino, and began to put her words into my actions. I had lost everything, including myself, but was about to gain everything I had always wanted. A closer walk with my Maker.
Ms. Rupp has words that makes you feel you are there with her, seeing and feeling all she went through along the Camino. A Oneness.
Now, out of the shelter a year, I've read her book for the third time. I've found how simple it is to forget things we learn in life once in the free outside world, getting caught up in news, politics, and everyday stressful living. How we forget the birds, squirrels, and nature. The beauty that surrounds us.
I highly recommend this book. It helps me live beyond my thoughts, getting closer to my inner Self.
Her book gave me the courage to buy a plane ticket and go. I'm a hiker and camper. I could tell from reading her book that some of the facets of the hike- some of the albergues, some of the pilgrims, some of the food-- etc etc-- were perhaps harder for her to accept than they would be for me. I thought she gave a really honest appraisal of how things were for her, and was touched by how she eventually resolved some of those contretemps.
I recently was looking at reviews of the book and was surprised to see some of the negative reviews. What I got from reading Joyce's book was an honest look at the Camino from the eyes of a middle-aged woman used to her own personal space, solitude, food, level of cleanliness, etc. One does necessarily give a lot of that up when on the Camino, if you stay in the albergues! They are fabulous places for meeting people from all over the world- but they can make you cringe if you are not used to hearing snoring at night. What I love about this book is the life lessons, her thoughts on what she found there, and what she got out of it in spite of -- and maybe even because of her discomfort.
I recommend this book for mature people thinking of hiking the Camino. In 2011 I accompanied a women's group from my church from Samos to Santiago, and I asked them all to read the book-- they liked it, too.
"Walk in a Relaxed Manner" was the first book I read about the Camino. It's newly published, written by a 60-year-old nun who walked the Pilgrimage around the time I was in Leon. She hit the trail with a retired priest, and this book was born from that experience. The subtitle and theme is "Life Lessons From the Camino," and each chapter is based on a way she grew due to the Pilgrimage. For example, the book's title is shared with a chapter where Sr. Rupp describes how she learned to walk slowly and thoughtfully instead of quickly and competitively. Other chapter titles include "Savor Solitude," "Deal with Disappointments," and "Live in the Now." Such topics may strike some as trite. But I found it impressive that more often than not, it was the walk's difficulties that enabled her to internalize these truths.
The author writes in a clear and readable manner. She rejoices in the high points of the Pilgrimage, and is honest about the lows as well. Each lesson is presented in a thoughtful manner, and all are applicable to everyday life. However, like many spiritual insights perhaps some sort of defining experience is required to truly own them. But reading about these truths may be a way to prepare the heart for their eventual actualization. Although a Catholic nun in the Servite Community, Sr. Rupp keeps things fairly ecumenical throughout her tale. In addition, practical advice about the Pilgrimage is sprinkled throughout the book, and a list of helpful Camino resources is included at the end. There's even an authorized website based on Joyce Rupp's name if you want more info about her.
Someday I'd like to do the El Camino Pilgrimage. I hope I don't have to wait until my sixties, but sometimes you have to let things happen in their time. If I do walk it, I'll be glad if I learn and grow half as much as Sr. Rupp did. Recommended for all travelers and pilgrims.
UPDATE 9/7/07: Well, I only had to wait until I was forty to do the Camino. On 7/14/07 I stepped off in St. Jean Pied-de-Port (France), and on 8/24/07 I walked into Santiago, Spain. After returning home to the US, I went through this book again. It was nice reading about familiar places on the Way, and also to identify with the lessons Ms. Rupp writes about. Recommended even more now that I've actually done the trek.