Perfect for fans of Wintering by Katherine May and How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell
From pilgrim paths to forest cabins, and from rented hermitages to arts temples and quiet havens for yoga and meditation, In Praise of Retreat explores the pleasures and powers of this ancient practice for modern people. Kirsteen MacLeod draws on the history of retreat and personal experiences to reveal the many ways listeners can step back from society to reconnect with their deepest selves and to their loftiest aspirations in life.
In the 21st century, disengaging, even briefly, is seen by many as self-indulgent, unproductive, and antisocial. Yet to retreat is as basic a human need as being social, and everyone can benefit, whether it’s for a weekend, a month, or a lifetime. Retreat is an uncertain adventure with as many peaks and valleys as any mountain expedition, except we head inward, to recharge and find fresh energy and brave new ideas to bring back into our everyday lives.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Turns out that hermits, nuns, and reclusive artists all have the right idea. In this eye-opening listen, introvert and writer Kirsteen MacLeod offers a fascinating look at what it means to live in solitude. Transitioning seamlessly between personal essays and examinations of historical loners like Henry David Thoreau and Rachel Carson, MacLeod reveals the rewards of isolation and suggests that a secluded life can be just as fruitful as a social one. She shares entrancing personal anecdotes, like how she found joy in a remote forest cabin, where she discovered that the seclusion made her feel more connected to the world. And while living in total isolation might not be right for everyone, MacLeod makes a compelling argument for how even a few moments alone can be worth cherishing. Narrator Lynn Bradford beautifully grasps MacLeod’s poetic thoughts, making In Praise of Retreat a gorgeous, nourishing listen.