Lively, entertaining, and inspiring, THE SHAPING OF A LIFE is in the tradition of the beloved bestsellers by Kathleen Norris and Anne Lamott, an intimate, lyrical, and thought-provoking memoir from one of the most respected and admired writers on religion in America today.In THE SHAPING OF A LIFE, Phyllis Tickle recounts her life with honesty and humor, richly conveying both the external events and the internal insights and emotions. She shares stories of her childhood in eastern Tennessee as the only child of the dean at the local collegeincluding her first inkling of the power and comfort of prayer and her realization that prayer required a disciplined routine, that it is best practiced by a composed mind and spirit. She writes of the sense of freedom and independence she discovered at college, where she fell in love with the language and the teachings of The Book of Common Prayer and decided to leave the Presbyterianism of her childhood and join the Episcopal Church. As Tickle chronicles her deepening understanding of prayer and the rewards of marriage, family, and a spiritual life, she reaches across the boundaries that separate one denomination from another and presents a portrait of spiritual growth and transformation that will appeal to devout practitioners and their less religious neighbors as well. Within a very personal story, Tickle reveals the keys that will help readers of all faiths find the path that leads from the everyday world of doing to the special place of simply being.From the Hardcover edition.