Trust, Living Spontaneously and Embracing Life

By Osho St. Martin’s Press Osho, deceased since 1990, was a philosopher and writer known for his provocative and inspiring spiritual teachings. This is the 11th volume in the Insights for a New Way of Living series. In this text, Osho discusses the history of trust and re-evaluates the idea of trust. He encourages the reader to identify and think about trust and faith and then question those definitions and beliefs. He uses anecdotal stories and quotes to help with the process. Readers who respond to Osho’s revolutionary way of questioning things will enjoy this book. If you have a … Continue reading

The Call of the Day

By Jodi Hershey Hershey encourages readers to always ask, “Am I coming from love or fear?” She helps readers connect through self-reflection with who they really are and how to move forward in their lives. The most important practice, in Hershey’s mind, is connecting daily with Universal Source. This can be done by meditation and prayer. Hershey states, “Act ‘As if’ while you are becoming, then one day you wake up and you are!” Readers may be interested in transitioning from the Third Dimension to achieving the Fourth Dimension which means going from being dense in feeling to light in … Continue reading

Illuminating Wisdom: Words of Wisdom, Works of Art

By Deirdre Hassed and Craig Hassed Exisle Publishing The Hasseds bring art and wise sayings together. This beautifully illustrated book connects inspiring philosophical and spiritual quotes to beautiful calligraphy while explaining the meaning or background of the text or its author. Their essays and art address science, artists, literary figures, Vedic traditions and Buddhism. Artists and philosophers will enjoy this book of over 80 inspiring quotes demonstrated through calligraphy and collage. If you have a book you’d like reviewed or have an old favorite you’d like to share with others, please contact barbara.kummerreviews@gmail.com

Carpe Diem, Seizing the Day in a Distracted World

By Roman Krznaric TarcherPerigee Krznaric is a social philosopher. He encourages readers to look at the history of the phrase “Carpe Diem” and how it is applicable in today’s world. He explores the underlying message to“live each day as if it were your last.” Readers will learn how, over the years, the phrase has been used as the path to opportunity, presence, hedonism, spontaneity or politics. In medieval times, it was a call to action. Today, Krznaric challenges us to decide if we should live each day as it if were our last-or our first! If you have a book … Continue reading

Adult Coloring

by Jess Volinski Fox Chapel Publishing Do you remember how comforting and relaxing it was to pull out the crayon box and open the book to a brand new, unused page?  Well, now adults can do it again. Coloring Books Watercolors, colored pencils, markers, crayons, and gel pens will all look stunning on high-quality, extra-thick paper. Each page is perforated, so when it’s finished, it can easily be removed to hang up or give as a gift. About Jess An experienced book illustrator and designer, Jess Volinski currently creates illustrations and surface designs for the publishing, fashion, tableware, and stationery … Continue reading

Happily Ever Now: Four Ways To Be In Love In The Present Moment

We all know that Happily Ever After doesn’t always pan out. Tinderella and Prince Match.com don’t always ride off into the sunset, and well, that doesn’t mean it was a complete failure after all. Many times people come into our lives for a moment of time to help us grow and expand; then their duty is done. Unfortunately we often get so caught up in obsessive future planning of the “what if’s” and the “might be’s”, that we miss the magic of the moment. Which essentially is all that really exists. What about this…Happily Ever Now. Being present with your … Continue reading

Take Good Care

According to the 2015 report by the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP, nearly 44 million adults in this country provide personal assistance for family members with disabilities or other care needs. As Cynthia Orange points out in her latest book, Take Good Care: Finding Your Joy in Compassionate Caregiving, when you add to this statistic the number of family, friends, and others who are at the ready to lend support or extend a helping hand when it is needed, you might ask, “Who isn’t a caregiver?” Take Good Care is unique because it isn’t your typical self-help, memoir, resource, … Continue reading

Move to Change: Using Dance to Ease Conflict

Throughout our lives, we learn contextually appropriate ways to maneuver our bodies in relationship to the world. Children, for instance, are often given more social permission to move about, jump, and play with fervor. However, the body-politic does not offer equal access or freedom to move for all; in some cultures certain forms of movement may be against the law or push against the boundaries of cultural norms. Yet our bodies need to move to live, and to change. Dancers seem to understand this need to move on a cellular level. For them, dancing serves as a form of communication. … Continue reading

Creating Art Puts All the Pieces Together

Some of the most creative, resilient people in the Twin Cities live at Tower Apartments in South Minneapolis. In the spring of 2016, they spent many hours together in Tower’s lobby sharing their stories and shaping hundreds of ceramic and colored glass pieces into a stunning mosaic. The massive community creation now delights their eyes every time they step off the elevator near Tower’s entrance. With obvious pride, they tell visitors, “We made that.” Tower tenants are people with long lives. Most have faced more than their share of deep difficulties – having to leave beloved places, losing loved ones, … Continue reading

The Mystery of Systemic Family Constellations: A New Method for Healing Transgenerational Trauma

I’ve been a member of 12 step programs for a number of decades. I credit one of them with saving my life. However, about three years ago, I found myself confronting body pain that, upon closer inspection, seemed emotionally generated: my back seized up and I couldn’t walk. This was an acute representation of physical pain that I had lived with during most of my recovery. This kind of flare-up had happened a number of times before, yet I could never find the basic cause. This time, a friend of mine, a body-oriented somatic therapist, suggested I try “family constellations.” … Continue reading

Being Used is Different from Being Loved

John Driggs

“It’s not the pretending, but the pretending that we are not pretending that hurts us.” — Sheldon Kopp, psychoanalyst and author Most of us at least intellectually understand that real love is different from exploitive caring. Caring for someone because of what they do for us is not the same as caring for someone because of who they are. However such clarity soon fades when we become emotionally vulnerable in relationships. Often then, the mind cannot see what the heart already knows. Inevitably heartbreak happens in exploitative relations. Often what hurts us the most is not having our hearts broken … Continue reading

Sex in Recovery: A Meeting Between the Covers

By Jennifer Matesa Hazelden Publishing Are you in recovery? Are you struggling with how to have sexual relationships and still maintain your sobriety? This book looks at how addiction, recovery, and sexuality are related. Matesa interviewed over 30 people in recovery who were willing to discuss sex and sexuality with her. This book contains their candid conversations and “topic chapters” where Matesa offers her own personal story and observations. Topic chapters end with “Queries for Discussion” questions specific to the topic, such as “How long has it been since someone else last touched my skin?” in the chapter on Touch. … Continue reading

Clearing Emotional Clutter: Mindfulness Practices for Letting Go of What’s Blocking Your Fulfillment and Transformation

By Donald Altman New World Library Emotional clutter can appear in our personal and professional lives. Ongoing toxic habits can create patterns that impact the level of emotional clutter we experience. Altman is a psychotherapist, author, and former Buddhist monk. He proposes mindfulness activities to cut through the clutter and change the way we process information so that the past and present can be dealt with in a healthier manner. He says, “I like to think of it as a mindful lifestyle reboot—a way of clearing out the old, habitual methods of living and thinking that keep us stuck in … Continue reading

Dropping The Struggle: Seven Ways to Love the Life You Have

By Roger Housden New World Library Struggling with your life? Housden was until several years ago when he realized that he was making his life unnecessarily difficult. He uses stories and poems to tell how one’s internal mental struggle can be managed and help with letting go and surrendering to peacefulness. Readers will find techniques which help with how to drop the struggles to be special (true humility), for a perfect life (being kind to ourselves), and for love (unconditional trust). What will your life become once you surrender to it? If you have a book you’d like reviewed or … Continue reading

The Little Black Book of Suicide Notes

Little Black Book of Suicide Notes by Adele Paula Royce

By Adele Paula Royce Live Your Light Publishing, Inc. A person dies by suicide approximately every 14 minutes in the U.S. alone. Royce hopes her semi-fictional book will help people considering suicide to reconsider it. She wants readers to know they are not alone in their aloneness. She reveals her own battle with suicide ideation, and in doing so, she sheds light on a dark topic while offering hope. Her nonjudgmental message includes 27 essays that she calls notes which are broken into The Reward of Death, The Ten Commandments of Suicide, and The Final Farewell. This book is the … Continue reading

Abstractly-Defined Artists Restore Humanity

Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking with both an old college professor and a local artist about the notion of healing through art. Comparing both conversations I found some striking similarities: Both people I interviewed came from backgrounds with troubled family dynamics that could easily be argued was — and still is — the foundation of every artistic thing they have ever done. Independently, yet simultaneously, they have taken their personal experiences and embedded them into ridiculous institutions [by way of teaching] with the objective being to either entertain or report possibilities in real time. Collectively, all three of … Continue reading