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Religious

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  1. 3.1 hrs • 8/1/2016 • Unabridged

    This audiobook is based on a spiritual lecture tour around the world. The trip was motivated by a deep inner spiritual desire. The journey began in Los Angeles and followed the Polar route to Europe. It follows Murphy’s spiritual observations and sentiments as he traveled by ocean liner across the polar route to Europe, Lourdes and to Hawaii. Murphy teaches us that we must learn to listen to the murmurs and whispers of our heart strings that guide us to action. The audiobook is a spiritual travelogue and Murphy opens up to the deeper meaning of his travels.

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    Traveling with God

    3.1 hrs • 8/1/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 14.3 hrs • 3/1/2016 • Unabridged

    A profound and moving journey into the heart of Christianity that explores the mysterious and often paradoxical lives and legacies of the Twelve Apostles—a book both for those of the faith and for others who seek to understand Christianity from the outside in. Peter, Matthew, Thomas, John: Who were these men? What was their relationship to Jesus? Tom Bissell provides rich and surprising answers to these ancient, elusive questions. He examines not just who these men were (and weren’t), but also how their identities have taken shape over the course of two millennia. Ultimately, Bissell finds that the story of the apostles is the story of early Christianity: its competing versions of Jesus’s ministry, its countless schisms, and its ultimate evolution from an obscure Jewish sect to the global faith we know today in all its forms and permutations. In his quest to understand the underpinnings of the world’s largest religion, Bissell embarks on a years-long pilgrimage to the supposed tombs of the Twelve Apostles. He travels from Jerusalem and Rome to Turkey, Greece, Spain, France, India, and Kyrgyzstan, vividly capturing the rich diversity of Christianity’s worldwide reach. Along the way, he engages with a host of characters—priests, paupers, a Vatican archaeologist, a Palestinian taxi driver, a Russian monk—posing sharp questions that range from the religious to the philosophical to the political. Written with warmth, empathy, and rare acumen, Apostle is a brilliant synthesis of travel writing, biblical history, and a deep, lifelong relationship with Christianity. The result is an unusual, erudite, and at times hilarious book—a religious, intellectual, and personal adventure fit for believers, scholars, and wanderers alike.

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    Apostle

    14.3 hrs • 3/1/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 9.5 hrs • 1/21/2015 • Unabridged

    With humor and opinions aplenty, a woman embarks on an unconventional quest to see if she is meant to be a nun. Just as Jane Christmas decides to enter a convent in mid-life to find out whether she is “nun material”, her long-term partner Colin, suddenly springs a marriage proposal on her. Determined not to let her monastic dreams be sidelined, Christmas puts her engagement on hold and embarks on an extraordinary year long adventure to four convents—one in Canada and three in the UK. In these communities of cloistered nuns and monks, she shares—and at times chafes and rails against—the silent, simple existence she has sought all of her life. Christmas takes this spiritual quest seriously, but her story is full of the candid insights, humorous social faux pas, profane outbursts, and epiphanies that make her books so relatable and popular. And Then There Were Nuns offers a seldom-seen look inside modern cloistered life, and it is sure to ruffle more than a few starched collars among the ecclesiastical set.

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    And Then There Were Nuns

    9.5 hrs • 1/21/15 • Unabridged
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  4. 11.2 hrs • 1/13/2015 • Unabridged

    From former diplomat Gerard Russell comes a fascinating portrait of seven endangered religions in the Middle East that have roots in the distant past. Despite its reputation for religious intolerance, the Middle East has long sheltered many distinctive and strange faiths: one regards the Greek prophets as incarnations of God, another reveres Lucifer in the form of a peacock, and yet another believes that their followers are reincarnated beings who have existed in various forms for thousands of years. These religions represent the last vestiges of the magnificent civilizations in ancient history: Persia, Babylon, and Egypt in the time of the Pharaohs. Their followers have learned how to survive foreign attacks and the perils of assimilation. But today, with the Middle East in turmoil, they face greater challenges than ever before. In Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms, former diplomat Gerard Russell ventures to the distant, nearly impassable regions where these mysterious religions still cling to survival. He lives alongside the Mandaeans and Ezidis of Iraq, the Zoroastrians of Iran, the Copts of Egypt, and others. He learns their histories, participates in their rituals, and comes to understand the threats to their communities. Historically a tolerant faith, Islam has, since the early twentieth century, witnessed the rise of militant, extremist sects. This development, along with the rippling effects of Western invasion, now pose existential threats to these minority faiths. And as more and more of their youth flee to the West in search of greater freedoms and job prospects, these religions face the dire possibility of extinction. Drawing on his extensive travels and archival research, Russell provides an essential record of the past, present, and perilous future of these remarkable religions.

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    Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms

    11.2 hrs • 1/13/15 • Unabridged
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  5. 8.2 hrs • 10/21/2014 • Unabridged

    Is the Book of Mormon the Great American Novel? Decades before Melville and Twain composed their great works, a farmhand and child seer named Joseph Smith unearthed a long-buried book from a haunted hill in western New York State that told of an epic history of ancient America, a story about a family that fled biblical Jerusalem and took a boat to the New World. Using his prophetic gift, Joseph translated the mysterious book into English and published it under the title the Book of Mormon. The book caused an immediate sensation, sparking anger and violence, boycotts and jealousy, curiosity and wonder, and launched Joseph on a wild, decades-long adventure across the American West. Today the Book of Mormon, one of the most widely circulating works of American literature, continues to cause controversy—which is why most of us know very little about the story it tells. Avi Steinberg wants to change that. A fascinated nonbeliever, Steinberg spent a year and a half on a personal quest, traveling the path laid out by Joseph’s epic. Starting in Jerusalem, where the Book of Mormon opens with a bloody murder, Steinberg continued to the ruined Mayan cities of Central America—the setting for most of the the Book of Mormon’s ancient story—where he gallivanted with a boisterous bus tour of believers exploring Mayan archaeological sites for evidence. From there the journey took him to upstate New York, where he participated in the true Book of Mormon musical, the annual Hill Cumorah Pageant. And finally Steinberg arrived at the center of the American continent, Jackson County, Missouri, the spot Smith identified as none other than the site of the Garden of Eden. Threaded through this quirky travelogue is an argument for taking the Book of Mormon seriously as a work of American imagination. Literate and funny, personal and provocative, the genre-bending The Lost Book of Mormon boldly explores our deeply human impulse to write bibles and discovers the abiding power of story.

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    The Lost Book of Mormon

    8.2 hrs • 10/21/14 • Unabridged
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  6. 12.4 hrs • 7/15/2012 • Unabridged

    When a health scare puts him in the hospital, Eric Weiner—an agnostic by default—finds himself tangling with an unexpected question, posed to him by a well-meaning nurse: “Have you found your God yet?” The thought nags him and prods him—and ultimately launches him on a far-flung journey to do just that. Weiner, a longtime “spiritual voyeur” and inveterate traveler, realizes that while he has been privy to a wide range of religious practices, he’s never seriously considered these concepts in his own life. Face to face with his own mortality, and spurred on by the question of what spiritual principles to impart to his young daughter, he decides to correct this omission, undertaking a worldwide exploration of religions and hoping to come, if he can, to a personal understanding of the divine. The journey that results is rich in insight, humor, and heart. Willing to do anything to better understand faith and to find the god or gods that speak to him, he travels to Nepal, where he meditates with Tibetan lamas and a guy named Wayne. He sojourns to Turkey, where he whirls—not so well, as it turns out—with Sufi dervishes. He heads to China, where he attempts to unblock his chi; to Israel, where he studies Kabbalah, sans Madonna; and to Las Vegas, where he has a close encounter with Raelians (followers of the world’s largest UFO-based religion). At each stop along the way, Weiner tackles our most pressing spiritual questions: Where do we come from? What happens when we die? How should we live our lives? Where do all the missing socks go? With his trademark wit and warmth, he leaves no stone unturned. At a time when more Americans than ever are choosing a new faith, and when spiritual questions loom large in the modern age, Man Seeks God presents a perspective on religion that is sure to delight, inspire, and entertain.

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    Man Seeks God

    12.4 hrs • 7/15/12 • Unabridged
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  7. 11.6 hrs • 5/10/2012 • Unabridged

    In medieval times, a pilgrimage gave the average Joe his only break from the daily grind. For Gideon Lewis-Kraus, it promises a different kind of escape. Determined to avoid the kind of constraint that kept his father, a gay rabbi, closeted until midlife, he has moved to anything-goes Berlin. But the surfeit of freedom there has begun to paralyze him, and when a friend extends a drunken invitation to join him on an ancient pilgrimage route across Spain, he grabs his sneakers, glad of the chance to be committed to something and someone. Irreverent, moving, hilarious, and thought-provoking, A Sense of Direction is Lewis-Kraus’ dazzling riff on the perpetual war between discipline and desire and its attendant casualties. Across three pilgrimages and many hundreds of miles—the thousand-year-old Camino de Santiago, a solo circuit of eighty-eight Buddhist temples on the Japanese island of Shikoku, and, together with his father and brother, an annual mass migration to the tomb of a famous Hasidic mystic in the Ukraine—he completes an idiosyncratic odyssey to the heart of a family mystery and a human dilemma: How do we come to terms with what has been and what is—and find a way forward, with purpose?

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    A Sense of Direction

    11.6 hrs • 5/10/12 • Unabridged
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