The lessons of a Sri Lankan holy man allow a woman to transform pain into faith in a work that delivers inspiration more...

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INVITATION TO BELIEVE

ESTABLISHING FAITH IN THE UNIVERSAL POWER

A debut self-help book mixes recollections and religious instruction.

After a 1998 car accident left her with damaged nerves and chronic pain, Schelling realized she had to use her faith to change her situation. She delved into the spiritual lessons she had learned during her decade studying with Sri Lankan holy man M.R. Bawa Muhaiyaddeen. Several mystical experiences followed her rational exploration of her beliefs, including seeing her own glowing green “light-body, or the soul that is one with God.” Schelling soldered a new connection to the inner guide in her heart and thereby discovered the secret to managing the symptoms of her pain. Her desire to help others manifested in the creation of this book, which she completed in a matter of days. Bawa’s nondenominational spiritual tenets form the foundation of the work, though they become more prominent in the instructional section. The guide portion is accompanied by several sprinkles of specific steps, such as understanding life is a gift, and advice on working with breathing. Schelling’s central metaphor is the inner heart as a plot of land, fitting, since the key to liberation, the author writes, “resides within our very own hands and heart.” The narrator switches from a lively first person to a subdued third person with the move from memoir to instruction. The prose strives to be inclusive but sometimes falls flat: “Many religions exist,” and “No one can say that difficulties are not difficult.” Concepts such as negative energy and life without faith are rendered too abstractly to have much impact. “We all share the common experiences that comprise life in this world” offers the “Life without Faith” section. The book’s modest size counters Schelling’s multiple aims, which include helping others to “discover the exaltedness of our birthright.” But the author’s sweet and sincere personal encounters with the divine bring the high-minded spiritual concepts comfortably down to Earth.

The lessons of a Sri Lankan holy man allow a woman to transform pain into faith in a work that delivers inspiration more than guidance.

Pub Date: July 25, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-9905920-0-6

Page Count: 84

Publisher: Coaching for Resonance

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2017

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MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. AND THE MARCH ON WASHINGTON

This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-448-42421-5

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2000

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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