Sarah Samuel understands what Martin Buber's said: "All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware." When we travel we may be responding to the desire to visit new and faraway people and places. Or we may be seeking connections or yearning to participate in religious rituals on the road.
Sarah Samuel has sought out many such experiences while meditating in Europe, exploring pilgrimage paths in Japan, visiting Buddhist sites in India and Tibet, and living in Spain, Costa Rica, and Italy. She has both studied and taken to heart many devotional practices.
In this handy and accessible book, the author ponders the joys and the challenges of both inward and outward journeys, embracing our own experience, and being in awe of the world around us. In her introduction (see the excerpt), she states her intention: "This book is not so much about where to travel to as it is about how and why to travel, so that travelling becomes a joyful and life-enhancing experience."
She fills the book with exercises and spiritual practices to enrich any journey, such as prioritizing curiosity, deliberately doing something that scares you, and finding peace when things go wrong. She recommends such time-honored spiritual approaches as having a beginner's mind and being patient and non-judgmental.
Last but not least, she shows how to cope with a world full of paradoxes and make the most of the pleasure of coming home after many mountain-top experiences elsewhere.
Mindful Traveling is an ideal book for all spiritual seekers.