Living from the Inside Out: How to Get to the Heart of Everything That Matters

Jean-Marie Hamel, Author Harmony $22 (176p) ISBN 978-1-4000-5274-5
Mind, body and spirit coach Hamel urges readers to befriend that revitalizing,""essential ingredient...already within you""--the soul--in this spiritual self-help book. The author gracefully advises how to tap into one's inner""essence"" by culling inspirational stories and quotes from sacred traditions, poets and philosophers, from Shakespeare's classic""To thine own self be true"" speech, to the wisdom of Buddha and Rumi. Exploring this intimate peace does not require a choice between the monastic and material worlds:""You can relax into being yourself, and enjoy material possessions,"" she promises. To outwardly express this self-realization, Hamel offers steps on how to break free from the aggravating clutches of unfinished projects, clutter and addictions, for example. However, she occasionally slips into New Age psychobabble, as when she writes:""Now move beyond the borders of the known world and join the powers of heaven and earth and celebrate the dance of the sacred energies."" The bits of her life that slip in, including several anecdotes about her childhood amongst exotic animals on the family farm, are intriguing and will leave readers wishing Hamel had provided more of these earthly vignettes and less syrupy abstraction. Additionally, while the author intimates that unconditional loving starts from within and then washes over all other relationships, the book sometimes feels slightly selfish. Still, readers in a spiritual rut--rather than a serious life crisis--may find a new path for self-growth in this work.
Reviewed on: 05/01/2004
Release date: 05/01/2004
Ebook - 224 pages - 978-1-4000-8097-7
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