WARRIOR'S WAY: The Challenging Life Games by Robert S. deRopp

WARRIOR'S WAY: The Challenging Life Games

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The ""Warrior's Way,"" as delineated by self-appointed mystic Robert deRopp, is that of the man who controls his own fate no matter what the knocks, and ""uses the situation for his own inner development."" DeRopp certainly weathered his share of buffetings from fate--a mother killed in the influenza pandemic following World War I, boarding in a stifling English public school until age twelve, abandonment to a life of peasantry and rats in Lithuania for two years, starvation and near-suicide in the Australian outback, two schizophrenic wives, and one brain-damaged child. But these external tribulations pale alongside deRopp's internal struggles, for he seems not so much a warrior as a battleground for warring archetypes--""Magician"" vs. ""Scientist, ""Missionary"" vs. ""Domestic Oaf,"" etc. Rescued by relatives (composer Vaughan Williams and wife), he gets a Ph.D. in plant physiology; serves as an agricultural chemist in World War II; dabbles unprofitably in cancer research, brain biochemistry, and drug research. But his real enthusiasm is reserved for the various ideologies and gurus that he alternately embraces and sheds on his way to enlightenment. Brief flirtations with Communism and pacificism, plus meditation with Gerald Heard and Aldous Huxley, culminate in a lengthy love-hate relationship with Ouspensky, and later Grandjieff. DeRopp follows Ouspensky to the New World after the war, becomes disenchanted after the master's death, and heads for California just in time to savor Haight-Ashbury in bloom. After losing his own group of followers in a Voltaire-like commune (""I was not a mellow dude""), and writing both spiritual and scientific books, the 65-year-old voyager settles in to let Nature be his teacher, and swears that all his warring selves are now in harmony. Talky and tortured.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1979
Publisher: Delacorte