Thin Places: A Pilgrimage Home [NOOK Book]

Overview


Thin Places is an eloquent meditation on what it means to move between cultures and how one might finally come home, a particular paradox in a culture that lacks deep ties to the natural world. During the 1990s, Ann Armbrecht, an American anthropologist, made several trips to northeastern Nepal to research how the Yamphu Rai acquired, farmed, and held onto their land; how they perceived their area's recent designation as a national park and conservation area; and whether-as she believed-they held a wisdom about ...

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Thin Places: A Pilgrimage Home

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Overview


Thin Places is an eloquent meditation on what it means to move between cultures and how one might finally come home, a particular paradox in a culture that lacks deep ties to the natural world. During the 1990s, Ann Armbrecht, an American anthropologist, made several trips to northeastern Nepal to research how the Yamphu Rai acquired, farmed, and held onto their land; how they perceived their area's recent designation as a national park and conservation area; and whether-as she believed-they held a wisdom about living on the earth that the industrialized West had forgotten.

What Armbrecht found instead were men and women who shared her restlessness, people also driven by the feeling that there must be more to life than they could find in their village. "We each blamed our dissatisfaction on something in the world," she writes, "not something in ourselves or in the stories we told ourselves about that world. If only we lived elsewhere, then we would be at home."

Charting Armbrecht's travels in the mountains of Nepal and in the United States and her disintegrating marriage back home, Thin Places is ultimately an exploration not of the sacred far-off but of the sacredness of places that are between-between the internal and external landscape, the self and others, and the self and the land. She finds that home is not a place where we arrive but a way of being in place, wherever that place may be. Along the way, Armbrecht explores the disconnections in our most intimate relationships, how they stem from the same disconnections that create our destruction of the land, and how one cannot be healed without attending to the other.

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Editorial Reviews

Rutland Herald - Andrew Nemethy

This is a book you'll want to spend time with.

The Valley Reporter - Rob Williams

Armbrecht's vulnerability, wisdom and unflinching honesty at a time of great crisis for the West make this story one of the most important books of the last year.

Orion - David G. Campbell

Stirring on many levels - emotional, religious, physical, sensual.... Armbrecht's is a lovely and humble journey.

Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute - Richard Whitecross

Engaging

Environmental Philosophy - Meg Mott

Armbrecht's honest prose is immediately life giving.

Rutland Herald
This is a book you'll want to spend time with.

— Andrew Nemethy

The Valley Reporter
Armbrecht's vulnerability, wisdom and unflinching honesty at a time of great crisis for the West make this story one of the most important books of the last year.

— Rob Williams

Orion
Stirring on many levels - emotional, religious, physical, sensual.... Armbrecht's is a lovely and humble journey.

— David G. Campbell

Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute
Engaging

— Richard Whitecross

Environmental Philosophy
Armbrecht's honest prose is immediately life giving.

— Meg Mott

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231518291
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 12/29/2008
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 296
  • Sales rank: 1,320,859
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Ann Armbrecht is the author of Settlements of Hope: An Account of Tibetan Refugees in Nepal. She lives in Montpelier, Vermont, with her husband and two children.

Columbia University Press

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Table of Contents

Pt. 1 Departure

1 Growing Rice 3

2 Seeds 13

3 Conserving the Land 19

4 The Books 25

5 The Black Box 29

6 The Baron Festival 33

7 The Bamboo Bridge 43

Pt. 2 Initiation

8 Stories as Boundaries 59

9 Gold Earrings 71

10 Thin Places 83

11 The Sacred Spring 93

12 Kelekpa the Shaman 101

13 Mapping Power 113

14 Lost Souls 121

Pt. 3 Return

15 Leaving 135

16 Baiseti Thuma 145

17 A Far-Off Place 155

18 Absence 167

19 Manguhang 181

Pt. 4 Birth

20 Birth 201

21 Sage Mountain 217

22 Sacred Stories 225

23 Listening 231

24 The Healing Stone 239

25 The Black Bag 249

26 Voices of the Land 257

27 The Waterfall 261

28 Bare Feet 265

Bibliography 273

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