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A review of 'Wherever You Go, There You Are" by Jon Kabat-Zinn

I read the book, "Wherever You Go, There You Are" with an open mind and no prior knowledge of the book. I found that the book was steeped in Buddism – when it was an antithesis to Christianity. I found the reading of it to be tedious and wearying. When I looked at the main theme of the book, not to underestimate its powerful influence on every body else, I saw between the lines – mostly the words "come awake." In thinking about it, I decided that I am already awake since becoming a bona fide Christian in 1972.

What was useful to me, though, in the core of the book was an idea and a concept and an intonation of living life deliberately and not falling asleep if even for a nap on this journey called life. That caused me to pause (because I have been in a semi-unconscious state during a crisis in my life).

The book seems authentic and the author genuine. I did not sense any falsehood or intent to deceive as I read through the pages, but for me, it did not speak to the foundation of my soul, but rather offended it.

For example, it suggests in one place learning how to be the author your own life as a life goal. I have to take exception to that particular notion, in that I believe that God is the ultimate author of my life and of my faith. I do meditate quite frequently, but I think in a different sense than the book instructs us to meditate. You have to spend some time in quiet meditation if you are an aspiring and have a goal to be a writer/artist. For one to be totally authentic and intrinsically honest as a writer and not copy worn out phrases, you have to decide – come to know your true honest belief system and not just copy worn out cliches without even realizing that you are doing it – in an manner that is unconscious.

The author seems highly intelligent, and at times hard for me to grasp some of his concepts and instructions. But, I have not had Buddist or Eastern religious training ever in my life, so that could contribute to the difficulty.

I think that the one thing that I got out of the book the most was the part about being connected to all humanity through the vehicle of genuine/honest love. That love could be the piece I am/was missing in my life because the instinct for survival completely overshadowed my need to love, and because I have been hurt by the people I love deeply. There was a risk of getting too close to anyone, because they will put a dagger in your heart potentially. But upon reflection over these things, I decided that I lose nothing by loving. I only gain in great dividends for the days that I have left on the earth and consider it a a privilege to be a vehicle of love.

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