The Barn at the End of the World (Kobo eBook)
“About the subtlest, most sane-making book on contemporary spirituality that I’ve read in years. It’s also the funniest.”—Joanna Macy, author of Active Hope
Deciding that her life was insufficiently grounded in real-world experience, Mary Rose O’Reilley, a Quaker reared as a Catholic, embarked on a year of tending sheep. In this decidedly down-to-earth, often-hilarious book, O’Reilley describes her work in an agricultural barn and her extended visit to a Buddhist monastery in France, where she studied with Thich Nhat Hanh. She seeks, in both barn and monastery, a spirituality based not in “climbing out of the body” but rather in existing fully in the world.
“O'Reilley has obviously mastered the craft of writing. Her rich, allusive prose draws on Catholicism, Quakerism, Buddhism, monastic tradition, Shakespeare and the Bible. Her short vignettes are luminous with faith matters, yet full of the earthy details of animal husbandry, resulting in a style that's a cross between Kathleen Norris and James Herriot.”—Publishers Weekly
“This enjoyable book offers lingering pleasure.”—Library Journal