Saturday, 24 September 2011

Book Review of Your Daily Walk with the Great Minds: Wisdom and Enlightenment of the Past and Present. (3rd edition).

A little while ago I wrote a review of Now:Embracing the Present Moment by Richard Singer. I was thrilled when the author himself contacted me to ask me if I would write a review of the third edition of his book Your Daily Walk with the Great Minds:Wisdom and Enlightenment of the Past and Present.

Now I am in a dilemma because I believe that honesty is paramount and I want to write an honest review of the book. When I read Now:Embracing the Present Moment it touched a part of me very deeply. I absolutely loved it. I have to say though that Your Daily Walk with the Great Minds:Wisdom and Enlightenment of the Past and Present is not for me.

Both books embrace the same ethos - that of seizing the moment, but where the first is a book that one can dip into, the second, to me, is more a recipe for daily life. It seems to be designed to be read every day and to be used as a tool for self improvement, self enrichment.

Each day of the year is provided for with a book of the month to read and a daily meditation on which to ponder. The reader is guided through each day with gentle suggestions that lead towards positivity and an emphasis on living in the 'Now'. Personal journalling is encouraged and the book is not a short term quick and easy read. This is a book aimed at people who are prepared to put in a lot of care, thought and effort.

Some of the monthly book suggestions are books that I have found inspiring - for example Mitch Albom's The Five People You Meet in Heaven.The sentiments of the book are genuine, heartfelt and will definitely inspire people. Unfortunately, however, I just don't think its for me. 

Maybe its because I am a bit of a cynic or maybe its because I don't feel I need that much improvement (that does sound a bit arrogant doesn't it??) but the book left me cold. Where Now:Embracing the Present Moment inspired me Your Daily Walk irritated me with its use of language. Perhaps its my down to earth Englishness but sentences like 'Today I will remember that I have a vital purpose in this universe and that it is my responsibility to fulfil this obligation.' are not my cup of tea.

Now, having said all this don't let me put you off. Just because I didn't like it doesn't mean you might not find Your Daily Walk fantastic. This book is in its third edition and Richard A Singer is well regarded, but I am not going to lie and say that I loved it because I didn't. 


Urban Cynic said...

You shouldn't apologise for not liking it or for thinking you don't need that much improvement.

Hopefully once we're over 40 (if we've been learning and paying attention) we should have managed to be in a place we're happy with. You clearly have the right people around you and seem to know yourself very well.

Some people find it harder to get to that point (for a multitude of reasons) so we're lucky we don't really need a book to help us with that area of our lives.

Some 'personal growth' books are quite good I imagine, and I read self-help business books to help me learn but you have to find the right book, written in a way that doesn't make you cringe!

Pauline said...

Good on you. I admire your honesty. I imagine being asked by the author for the review would make it hard. If the one sentence you quoted is anything to go by, it wouldn't be for me either.