A successful and concise guide to overcoming suffering.

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HOW TO BE

A GUIDE TO SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT

A spiritual development manual uses Eastern philosophy and personal experiences to present ideas about how to live a life of consciousness and fulfillment.

In brief essays on topics ranging from death, needs, intentions, and happiness to laziness, ambitions, forgiveness, and meaninglessness, Sarv (Learn to Say Good-Bye, 2016) explores a plethora of concepts related to life and communication. The purpose of the book is to redirect readers’ thoughts so that they can escape suffering and inconvenience. The author begins by describing consciousness: “We cannot define ourselves, our mind or our consciousness,” he asserts. “Your consciousness is not you. Consciousness is an environment in which the mind can appear.” From the beginning, Sarv’s theory of consciousness and the self is described in simple, direct language. The volume explores the many roots and causes of suffering, taking them apart and questioning whether individuals really need to experience life in the stressful, anxiety-ridden way that many do. The author strongly advises readers to closely observe their moods and the way they may continually revolve around particularly unhelpful ideas. This technique, Sarv suggests, can release unnecessary worries that have become a habit. Readers may have trouble with the blunt nature of the guide. The author himself warns readers that the manual may offend them by suggesting that individuals cause their own suffering. He explains that it is the perceived self—the image of the self—that actually suffers by believing that it has been mistreated, harmed, wronged, or disrespected. But those looking for a straightforward and practical perspective on suffering should appreciate the book’s sometimes-undiplomatic but often insightful passages dealing with self-identity, the false nature of the ego, and the misconception that individuals are separate from their surroundings. Overall, the volume is a refreshingly honest and unsentimental approach to spiritual development through practicing detachment and calming the mind.

A successful and concise guide to overcoming suffering.

Pub Date: May 8, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-985144-78-1

Page Count: 174

Publisher: CreateSpace

Review Posted Online: Oct. 24, 2018

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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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