Three whites stand accused of brutally murdering an African-American
man in Jasper, Texas, in June 1998. Meanwhile, Houston author Claudia
M. Darkins documents how teachers and principals in Illinois and Texas
sabotaged her sons' education and undermined their self-esteem. Racism is the
connection between these events, the first of which is from today's headlines,
and the others dating back as far as two decades.
it was a grandparent, or a teacher, or a colleague. Someone older, patient, and
wise, who understood you when you were young and searching. Someone helped you
see the world as a more profound place, or gave you sound advice to help you
make your way through it. For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his
college professor from nearly twenty years ago.
Maybe, like Mitch, you lost track of this mentor as you made your way, and
the insights faded, and the world seemed colder. Wouldn't you like to see this
person again, ask the bigger questions that still haunt you, receive wisdom for
your busy life today the way you once did when you were younger? Mitch Albom had
that second chance. He rediscovered Morrie in the last months of the older man's
life. Knowing he was dying, Morrie visited with Mitch in his study every
Tuesday, just as they used to back in college. Their rekindled relationship
turned into one final "class: lessons in how to live. Tuesday's with
Morrie is a magical chronicle of their time together, through which Mitch
shares Morrie's lasting gift with the world.
Overt and extreme racism prompted the killing. It's easy to identify
this sort of racial hatred, and just as easy to dismiss it as an isolated
extreme, the result of ignorance. But what are we to make of the kind of covert
racism that the Darkins' sons encountered consistently throughout their years
in schools in two states? The kind of prejudice displayed by teachers and
principals who presumably are among the most educated members of our society.
A Name I Can't Read is profoundly disturbing, yet highly
important. This book examines and documents the devastating long-term effects
on the education of minority children of just this kind of hidden racism.
Some examples of the kind of bias the book describes includes several
teachers' outright refusal to provide textbooks to the Darkins' sons. Others
sent the boys out of the classroom during instruction periods. Although Gregory
and Chris did well on standardized tests in their early years, principals and
teachers refused to put them in accelerated learning classes.
Not surprisingly, the boys started to fall behind in their academic
achievements. Yet their parents regularly read to them, encouraged them
consistently to complete all homework, and even took the unusual step of
teaching Chris, the younger child, to read during the summer between
kindergarten and first grade.
Throughout the school years of these two young men, now grown, too many
of their educators underrated their abilities and desire to learn. The author
speculates that these educators meant well, but had lower expectations for the
Darkins' sons because of the adults' unconscious racial bias.
This type of bias, invisible to those who have it due to denial, is not
subject to the law of the land. By the time Gregory and Chris were in school,
physical segregation had been outlawed. But they were still segregated in the
minds-and hearts-of many of their teachers and principals. These children were
separate and unequal solely because of their race, not their test scores,
abilities or willingness to learn.
The author's claims might seem unbelieveable if she did not include written
evidence. As parents and as tax-paying citizens, the Darkins had to work twice
as hard in the public schools to obtain a lesser education for their
children. Ms. Darkins offers her experience of hidden racial bias as one of the
unnamed and unexamined causes of too many minority children's academic
difficulties. Passing more laws will not improve the public schools, which
already are gridlocked by endless legal paperwork and bureacratic red tape.
Healing will be possible only when educators and the rest of us end our
denial and take personal responsibility by owning up to the biases in our
hearts. This means taking the time and effort to examine ourselves at the
deeper levels of self, where true healing and change occur.
Chip Brown is an award winning journalist, has been a staff writer for the Washington Post,
and has written for numerous national magazines. He takes us along on his personal inquiry
into the mystical ways in which we heal, and the attendant scientific and philosophical
questions that arise once we allow for the possibility that the mind can affect the health
of the body.
Journalist Chip Brown employs a variety of investigative tools in an effort to comprehend
the allure as well as the mechanics of such unorthodox yet increasingly popular practices
as energy healing and Therapeutic Touch, and the real meaning of such esoteric terms as the
subtle body, psychic energy, auras, chakras, prana, and chi. Brown treks through history to
describe the evolution of the medical fringe from the mainstream. He makes pilgrimages to
scientists and physicians who have risked career and reputation in their pursuit of the
paranormal. He studies with healers and communes with their spirit guides. He goes head to
head with students and foes of enlightenment to thrash out such delicate matters as faith,
the mind/body dialectic, and the power of prayer. Brown witnesses healing sessions in which
injuries incurred in past lives are healed, torn auras are sewn, and then submits to such
treatment himself. This is an honest and heart-felt personal account of one man's journey
into the world of alternative medicine.
When Dr. Moody first published this book in 1975, it revolutionized the field of near-death
research. He carefully documented the cases of over 100 near-death experiences. Perhaps his
greatest achievement is the identification of 15 separate elements of the near-death
experience (NDE) that were present to some degree in each case. This laid the foundation for
later studies to apply the scientific method in determining whether the common occurrence
of these elements warranted placing the NDE in the realm of verifiable phenomena.
Machaelle Small is a visionary empath with the profound ability to see, hear, and
interact with invisible forces that surround her. She recounts her personal story
of triumph from a childhood of torment and isolation to the discovery of her ability to
communicate with the world of nature. At Perelanda, her 20 acre farm in Virginia,
she devotes her life to understanding the messages that are communicated to her from
entities of the nature kingdom. This is a book for all of us who dream of a world of harmony,
love, truth and understanding.
Needless to say, the debate over NDEs is far from resolved today. Partly from my own
experiences and beliefs, and partly as a result of this book and the ones that followed it,
I am convinced that NDEs do not exist solely in the mind of the near-deceased. I believe that
they fulfill a very comforting and necessary role in helping the person to cope with the
experience of death. As such, they are a fascinating window into the process of physical
death and the survival of the soul.
Dr. Morse applied the research of Dr. Raymond Moody and others to a very soundly based
scientific study of near-death experiences (NDEs). This book is the result of many
years work on this subject. His work began primarily with the NDEs of children, but
later also included the NDEs of adults.
These questions are addressed in this book: Do children have NDEs that are different
from those of adults? Does one need to be near death to have an NDE? Is there an area of
the brain that produces NDEs? Have the researchers missed any traits? How did NDEs affect
children after they became adults? Buy the book and find out how Dr. Morse answered these
and other fascinating questions about NDEs.
This book takes up where Dr. Morse's best selling book 'Closer to the Light'
leaves off. In 'Transformed by the Light', Dr. Morse examines the changes that
take place in the lives of those who have had near-death experiences (NDEs).
Based on the largest NDE study done at that time (400 cases, 1992), this book
convincingly shows that the lives of those who have had NDEs are permanently
and radically changed for the better in both spiritual and physical ways.
After a battery of tests, interviews, and examination of medical records,
these are the reults that were reported: People who have NDEs are healthier and
have fewer psychosomatic complaints. Psychologically they are happier, have
stronger family ties, have more zest for living, and have a greatly diminished
fear of death. A significant increase in psychic abilities was found in almost
all NDE participants of the study. This study provided the scientific data to
propose a new theory of brain/mind interaction linking physics, medicine,
neuroscience, and the human spirit.
When Saint Patrick first came to Ireland in the fifth century A.D., he
encountered the Celtic people and a flourishing spiritual tradition that had
already existed for thousands of years. The Celts had a refined and passionate
sense of the divine. The Celtic imagination articulates an inner friendship that
embraces nature, divinity, the underworld, and the human world as one. The Celts
never separated the visible from the invisible, time from eternity, or the human
from the divine. Surviving to this day, the Celtic reverence for the soul in all
things is a vibrant spiritual heritage unique in the Western world, one that is
capturing the imagination of thousands of people as they rediscover the wisdom
of the past and their own Celtic roots.
In Anam Cara, Gaelic for 'soul friend', John O'Donohue invites you
into the magical and unobtrusive world of your own divinity; to that place in
the soul where there is no distance between you and the eternal. The ancient
wisdom, poetry, and blessings of Celtic spirituality will awaken and grace the
beauty of your heart's landscape. Exploring such themes as the mystery of
friendship, the spirituality of the senses, the brightness within solitude, work
as the poetics of growth, aging as the art of inner harvesting, and death as
eternal homecoming, this book will encircle your heart with Celtic benediction.
I really enjoyed this book! Page after page offers insights
and questions about the nature of an individual human's relationship with
God. And here's a warning: if you really think about the issues raised
in the text, it will take you a long time to actually read. Whether you
agree with Walsch's understanding of his Creator's will or not, the principles
in this book will certainly make you take another look at your relationship
with God. I particularly liked the section that discussed the 10 Commandments!
This is a companion workbook for 'Book 1'. It has further examples
of the principles in action, and is chock full of exercises and questions
to help you discover the principles at work in your own life. Designed
for work within a group of interested people, an individual may nonetheless
work through this book on his/her own to great benefit.
This book discusses social revolution of the most subtle kind; a change
in attitude and attention. Covering everything from sexuality to politics,
war, and education, this book contains ideas on the nature of human inter-relationships,
and the price of hidden agendas and expectations. Again, even if you do
not agree with what Walsch offers as his understanding of God's ideas,
the discussion can lead you to a more thorough understanding of your own
This is the last book in Neale Donald Walsch's Conversations With God Trilogy. It begins
by re-hashing some of the material already covered in the first two books, but does have some
interesting insights of its own to offer. Walsch does a nice job of wrapping up the dialog that
has filled three books. Here is a quote from the last chapter in the book:
For truth is the body, and joy is the blood of God, who is love. Truth. Joy. Love.
These three are interchangeable. One leads to the other, and it matters not in which order they
appear. All lead to Me. All are Me. And so I end this dialog as it began. As with life
itself, it goes full circle. You have been given truth here. You have been given joy. You have
been given love. You have been given here the answers to the largest mysteries of life. There is
now only one question remaining. It is the question with which we began. The question is not to
whom do I talk, but who listens?
Jelaluddin Rumi is a 13th Century islamic poet, scholar, teacher, and
mystic who is finally achieving well deserved recognition in western
christian society. This is due in large part to the modern translations of
his work by Coleman Barks. The impact of Rumi's works upon islamic culture
has been compared to the impact which William Shakespeare's works had upon
christian culture in the west. This book is a collection of Rumi's most
beautiful and influential poems. Coleman Barks has been passionate in his
treatment and arrangement of this important writer's work.
This is the first book in a new series by the author of the Conversations With God
trilogy. In the author's words, he began his relationship with God as a fearship
rather than a friendship. He speaks of his struggles to see God as a friend instead of
a punishing judge. Like the books in his first series, this book is also written mostly in
dialog format. It shows us how any of us can have a conversation with God. But more
than that, this book also shows us how to deepen and strengthen our own friendship with God.
I highly recommend this book.
Rumi's poetry is full of mystery, magic, and a love of life. Rumi embraces
all of life's experiences and is always pointing out to us that the essence
of God is present in all that we see and do, no matter how ordinary it may
seem to us. And he does so in a language that our soul understands, even if
our conscious mind does not. This is the beauty and the power in Rumi's
poetry. Buy this book and give your soul a wonderful gift.
The Sufis are the mystics of Islam. Essential Sufism is a broad but very readable survey
of literary treasures produced over many centuries by men and women of a faith that has influenced
at least a dozen cultures for over fifteen hundred years. More than 300 works of incredible
beauty and inspiration are included.
Written by Sufi prophets, saints, and teachers, these luminous stories, fables, prayers, and aphorisms
help us to see the love and generosity of God in all his creation. Through these works we can experience
for ourselves the love for all things that embodies the Sufi's relationship with God. This book is filled
with works that are sure to touch your heart.
By now, most people have probably heard about this book, and most people
accept it as a parable about one man's journey to discover the source and
meaning of power and relationships. Even though the events in the book are
fictitious, the descriptions of how energy appears, and of how it flows
among living beings, reflects some of my own experiences with energy. I
enjoyed this tale because not only is it told as a fast-paced adventure
(complete with bad guys and mysterious kidnappings), it also offers concrete
examples of how the Insights can be used in real situations.
On the surface, this is the story of Altazar, the king of Lemuria, at the time of its
destruction a long time ago. This story is really a parable full of hidden meanings.
It is a story about a journey of the soul, and all of the characters represent different
parts of our personalities. The author calls them the 'master patterns' of humanity.
I found myself resonating to several of the characters. The story itself is compelling and
it held my interest to the very end. How does it end? Get the book and find out!
This book is a re-creation of the spiritual life of ancient Egypt. It is fiction, but it
does a masterful job of conveying the atmosphere of the times and always treats the Egyptian
religious heritage with the awe and respect that it deserves. I found myself absorbed in the
story to the point that I began to imagine that I was actually there in that time taking part
in it. This is the first of two books that tell the tale of an Egyptian peasant boy who
becomes am initiate in an Egyptian temple. In this first book we find him being put to many
tests and learning the ways of the priesthood. See my review of the second book below to
hear the rest of the story.
In this second book (see the above review for the first part of the story) we find Her-Bak
has passed many tests and had many setbacks on his quest to become an Egyptian temple
priest. Here he begins to learn about the inner workings of the temple. At the same time,
his knowledge and his confidence in his priestly skills are increasing. Does he achieve
enlightenment? Read the book and treat yourself to a wonderful story as you find out.
This is much more than a charming little novel. In the spirit of 'The Celestine Prophecy',
this witty, inspirational tale offers life-transforming wisdom for us all. A metaphor for
self discovery, we follow one woman's quest for healing and personal truths. At 37, Christine
Moore had a frustrating career, a few dead-end romances, no husband, and a less than perfect
figure. From this less than auspicious beginning we follow her on a voyage of the spirit
that frees Christine to appreciate each precious moment. Everyone who believes that hopes
and dreams can be attained will find in this book simple, yet profound, guideposts to an
enlightened new life. This is a wonderful story guaranteed to warm your heart.
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