In her debut novel, Dillsaver details a profound spiritual journey.
Elizabeth Susan Dolman tells her life story to the book’s narrator, recalling that from a very young age she was acutely aware of connections between things and that “reality was not always clearly definable” As she grew up and discovered yoga, she met the spiritual teacher who would become her guru and whom she would follow from the United States to England, giving up her job and ordered life. Elizabeth—who changed her name to Indu, in the yogic tradition—found that the move to a foreign country awakened her sense of wonder and allowed her to examine her anxiety; it also set her on a trajectory to a beautiful but painful love affair with a man named George. That relationship raised fraught questions about sexual fidelity but also allowed the author to explore her capacity for introspection and forgiveness. The author peppers the book with quotations from a wide range of authors and works, including Dostoyevsky, Isak Dinesen, the Bible and the Bhagavad Gita, and she includes a wealth of teachings on how to relate to others and how to approach the mysteries of the self and the universe. Overall, Dillsaver compiles a thorough introduction to yogic wisdom and provides a taste of what a contemporary practitioner might expect on his or her own spiritual journey. Although sometimes the writing is rather stiff and too closely focused on detail, the novel’s observations may encourage readers to adopt a similar sensitivity to overlooked aspects of daily life.
A comprehensive, if sometimes didactic, primer on enlightenment.