A memoir that offers intriguing insights into how one’s decisions affect one’s body and mind.

ILLUMINATED UNIVERSE

In her debut book, a holistic therapy practitioner, reflexologist, and artist relates her story of a near-death experience and its resulting insights.

In January 2015, author Guadalupe, disheartened by difficulties in her professional and personal lives, asked herself, “Is anything I do any good at all? Does it even make a difference?” Just a few minutes later, her car spun out of control on the road, and she experienced a transformative encounter with “The Light” (which she also calls “Source” or “God”). She says that she came to realize, among other things, that people’s lives on Earth are just a small part of their existence. She also says that she heard a voice ask her, “Do you want to live?”; after she responded affirmatively, she found herself back in her car, with no indication that an accident ever happened. She says that she then went on to experience a sense of heightened awareness over the next several months, even sensing life in inanimate objects. However, she became depressed when she tried to reconcile her experience with her profession, but by exchanging therapy sessions with a colleague, she was able to better integrate her encounter into the rest of her life. Her realization that all life is sentient, and that everyone chooses their own life, informed by beliefs, attitudes, and decisions, made her accept her connection with the Source. Overall, Guadalupe presents complex ideas in an easily comprehensible manner. Her account of her near-death experience is engaging, but its true significance in the narrative is in how it affected her professional practice. As a result, readers who are merely looking for a thrilling, supernatural account may be disappointed. The book also includes a clear discussion of polarity therapy, a holistic healing technique based on the idea of energy flow within the body. The final chapter, “Alignment and Transformation,” reads like a self-help book, and as such, it provides invaluable practical advice on changing one’s viewpoint in order to effect positive change in one’s life.

A memoir that offers intriguing insights into how one’s decisions affect one’s body and mind.

Pub Date: June 20, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-5043-5984-9

Page Count: 102

Publisher: BalboaPress

Review Posted Online: June 20, 2017

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If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

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THE MYTH OF SISYPHUS

AND OTHER ESSAYS

This a book of earlier, philosophical essays concerned with the essential "absurdity" of life and the concept that- to overcome the strong tendency to suicide in every thoughtful man-one must accept life on its own terms with its values of revolt, liberty and passion. A dreary thesis- derived from and distorting the beliefs of the founders of existentialism, Jaspers, Heldegger and Kierkegaard, etc., the point of view seems peculiarly outmoded. It is based on the experience of war and the resistance, liberally laced with Andre Gide's excessive intellectualism. The younger existentialists such as Sartre and Camus, with their gift for the terse novel or intense drama, seem to have omitted from their philosophy all the deep religiosity which permeates the work of the great existentialist thinkers. This contributes to a basic lack of vitality in themselves, in these essays, and ten years after the war Camus seems unaware that the life force has healed old wounds... Largely for avant garde aesthetes and his special coterie.

Pub Date: Sept. 26, 1955

ISBN: 0679733736

Page Count: 228

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: Sept. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1955

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