THE EAGLE'S QUEST by Fred Alan Wolf

THE EAGLE'S QUEST

A Physicist's Search for Truth in the Heart of the Shamanic World

KIRKUS REVIEW

 More soul-searching and imaginative (to say the least) hypothesizing by Wolf (Parallel Universes, 1988, etc.)--this time in an attempt to explain shamanistic ``miracles'' in terms of quantum physics. It hurts to be a left-brained guy in a right-brained milieu, and the reader feels for Wolf as he once again attempts to explain extra-normal phenomena (shamanic healing, fire-walking, shape- shifting, out-of-body experiences, time travel, etc.) in terms that a typical modern physicist might agree with and understand. In the end, though, theories of radioactive Druidic stones that transform ultrasensitive children into shamans sound more desperate than satisfactory--as do speculations that shamans heal through sound vibrations and that time travel results from the existence of parallel universes, and shape-shifting is possible due to the observer effect, etc. Much of the book centers on Wolf's journey to the jungles of Peru, where he imbibes liquid distilled from the hallucinogenic ayahuasca plant, communes with local shamans, and emerges ``healed'' in ways obvious only to himself--while reading meaning into such innocuous coincidences as the presence of a comely Peruvian actress at an ayahuasca rite (a trickster-spirit's attempt to distract him, or perhaps a manifestation of Wolf's own feminine half) or the screening of a film about a Peruvian seeker (an amazing manifestation of Wolf's own spiritual journey). Memories of previous encounters with Druids, Cabalists, Buddhists, medicine men, and helpful spirits provide grist for more wide-eyed speculation along the way of what seems to amount to an amazing exercise in wishful thinking. Reality is what you make it, the physicist wistfully concludes--and in Wolf's highly subjective world, nothing could be truer.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1991
ISBN: 0-671-67534-6
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 1991




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