Why Am I? by T. E. Whitaker

Why Am I?

How to Find the Meaning of Life without Religion or Materialism
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A reformed underachiever and armchair philosopher puts his thoughts and ideas into action tackling some of life’s biggest existential issues: meaning, purpose and fulfillment.

At a time of profound personal confusion, it didn’t sit well with Whitaker when he was told by his brotherthat, sorry, you’re just “uncoachable.” But when the author’s brother delivered this sobering pronouncement, something moved inside the frustrated entrepreneur and sometimes writer. It spurred him to act, to take stock of his life and to confront the causes of his unhappiness. Whitaker found that it was his entrenched thought patterns, ideas and beliefs about his life that were causing him great pain and suffering. Powerful messages from an insatiable media delivering fear one moment and materialism the next had pummeled Whitaker into submission and set him on a hollow life’s journey that many may find all too familiar. “The story you’ve been forced to read—by your family, friends, the media, the marketers, the retailers, and religion,” he says, is “a churning amalgam of material success pursuits, eternal salvation, hellfire, celebrity worship, lifestyle envy, salving bromides, wedding days, dismaying divorce, apocalyptic distraction, fear-based economics, and age-old wisdom about embracing life’s simple things (meant to stem the rising panic inside).”The author devotes much of his lively narrative to railing against these modern evils—as well as taking aim at organized religion and even unhelpful family and friends—before getting down to work. And hard work is exactly what Whitaker’s approachis all about. At its heart, the author’s debut is a guide for personal growth and reflection, which requires readers to first dig deep into their own psyches in order to formulate a moral code, a values code and an ideals code. With these elemental building blocks in place, Whitaker promises that the meaning of life—or rather, the meaning of your life—will become apparent. “This is one of the most important realizations to embrace,” he says. “The meaning of life is different for everyone, even close friends or family members.” Eschewing whatever possibilities may or may not exist beyond our current life spans, Whitaker instead roots his system for personal and perpetual self-fulfillment in this current reality. The blue-collar approach is one that many earnest self-help seekers will find refreshingly free of supernatural or mystical components. But they must first commit to completing the self-analytical exercises that Whitaker puts forth.

A straightforward guide for rolling up your sleeves and being enlightened.

Pub Date: Feb. 19th, 2014
Page count: 168pp
Publisher: Oddward TKE
Program: Kirkus Indie
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