BOOK REVIEW: MESHEL LAURIE – BUDDHISM FOR BREAK-UPS

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There are many people who ask themselves, “What would Jesus do?” but in the case of Meshel Laurie, it was, “What would Buddha do?” The Australian writer, comedian and radio personality was looking towards her Buddhist faith as a way of making sense of the end of her 19 year marriage. Except that there were no self-help manuals on successfully separating, not from a Buddhist standpoint, so she wrote her own and it’s a thought-provoking, relatable and compassionate read.

Laurie’s book finds the right balance between offering her own personal tale as well as the fundamental principles that Buddhists believe. She describes her separation from her ex-husband, Adrian Lewinski in some detail, whilst also offering a template for navigating through the negative emotions of fear, grief and loneliness that are synonymous with heartbreak.

If you’re sitting there dismissing this book as a bunch of hippie nonsense then think again. This book is instead a rather practical and logical collection of different chapters. Early on Laurie has us considering the fact that we will all lose somebody close to us someday: “No relationship – romantic, familial or platonic – is absolute and forever. We will all lose someone we rely on at some point in our lives. Sometimes the other person chooses to leave us, sometimes they’re taken from us tragically, and sometimes we discover that they were never ours to begin with. But one way or another, the relationship will end.”

This means that the ability to deal with the loss of a relationship is a useful skill. Another handy lesson that Laurie offers is to learn about the Buddhist principles of “impermanence” i.e. understanding that everyone and everything is constantly changing and “dependent arising” or understanding that we never actually stop evolving or changing and that this process is shaped by the conditions around us. For Meshel she simply wants us to consider and focus on the positive aspects of a break-up – even if it’s just being able to lie in a large bed and watch your favourite shows on Netflix – you should seize this opportunity for happiness and growth.

Meshel Laurie offers us some very practical pieces of advice in her second book, Buddhism for Break-ups. This combination of well-written, well-explained and considered Buddhist teachings as well as her own real-life experiences can offer some real comfort to readers in much the same was as Chicken Soup For The Soul has done. You can really get a sense that, “If Meshel can do it then perhaps I can too.”

Buddhism for Break-ups should be essential reading for anyone that finds themselves broken-hearted and open to the prospect of learning new things and becoming a better individual. Buddhism for Break-ups may not answer all of your questions but it is certainly clever and therapeutic enough to steer you in the right direction. Namaste!

Originally published on 28 February 2017 at the following website: http://arts.theaureview.com/reviews/book-review-meshel-lauries-buddhism-for-break-ups-is-the-buddhist-dating-equivalent-of-chicken-soup-for-the-soul/

Visit The Au Review’s homepage at: http://www.theaureview.com/

BOOK REVIEW: DR HELENA POPOVIC – NEUROSLIMMING

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We live in an obesogenic environment. It’s a world of fast living, sedentary jobs and leisure activities, labour-saving devices, and an overabundance of cheap, accessible, energy-dense, nutrient poor, highly-processed foods. It’s also an environment where a growing majority of people are overweight or obese and those who succeed in shedding weight will often find themselves regaining it (and possibly more) in the 12 months after the fact.

NeuroSlimming looks to address some of these problems and get people to really stop and think about how and why they eat, rather than getting too hung up on what they consume.

 

To read the rest of this review please visit the following website: http://magazine.100percentrock.com/reviews/book-reviews/201702/223334

Visit 100% Rock’s homepage at: http://magazine.100percentrock.com/

BOOK REVIEW: FIONA HIGGINS – FEARLESS

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Fearless could be the plot of a reality TV show. You take six wealthy individuals with first world problems and fly them to Bali under the guise of “helping” them overcome their fears. But instead you endanger their lives, sit back and watch what happens. It’s an interesting drama about courage, friendships and the decisions we make.

This novel is the third one to be written by the author of The Mothers’ Group. Fiona Higgins has also penned her memoirs and she has spent the last couple of years living in Indonesia. It’s clear from reading Fearless that Higgins knows the cultural landscape of Bali and she offers us an engaging look at what many of us Australians consider an attractive holiday destination.

The fears that Higgins describes in this novel are all common ones: flying, heights, public speaking, intimacy, death and failure. This book is broken up into each of these parts and is told in the third person. Higgins slowly reveals why each of the characters have chosen to participate in this retreat before something big happens. For Australian visitor, Janelle it was to inject change into her boring life while Italian tourist, Lorenzo is hoping it will cure his infertility problems. Another Aussie, Cara is drained after the death of her child while Englishman, Henry arrived at the proceedings by luck or sheer accident, you can decide.

Fiona Higgins has done an excellent job of developing her characters and managing their rich stories both in the past and in the present. This book is easy to read and an interesting one that is part self-help book and part survivor story. It’s the kind of tale that will make you stop and think about your own life while you question what you would do if you were faced with life-threatening circumstances. At the end of the day will you sink or be fearless?

***Please note: a free copy of this book was won by the writer through a Bookstr giveaway. To read the original review on that website please visit: https://www.bookstr.com/book/fearless/10246880/

BOOK REVIEW: RICHARD SAUERMAN – ARE YOU LIVING YOUR RESUME OR YOUR EULOGY? & OTHER SHORT STORIES & ANECDOTES

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Are You Living Your Resume Or Your Eulogy? is a little book that contains some big messages. It’s a motivational, self-help one from Richard Sauerman who is better known as “The Brand Guy”. The latter has made it his full-time job to challenge people and teams to do “epic shit” and this title offers just enough positive psychology to enable readers to do the same.

This volume is divided into seven parts and contains anecdotes and inspirational short stories as well as advice that is easy to follow. It is trying to shock people out of their humdrum complacency and make them think twice about their actions. One particularly striking story is about a busking concert violinist in Washington DC that is included in order to remind us about the many beautiful things we pass every day without even noticing.

The biggest message in this manual is to get people thinking about their achievements. It also asks them to question whether their life is being lived like a list of resume items or things they’d actually like to be mentioned in their eulogy. It’s frank and down-to-earth and should allow some people to step back and realise that they’re not living up to their full potential.

Are You Living Your Resume or Your Eulogy? is a hodgepodge of different vignettes, tales and advice, which should force readers to ask some big questions and confront some larger issues.  It is ultimately an honest and inspirational chapter that should have a little something that resonates with everybody. In all, this is a small book that offers up some important food for thought.

 

***Please note: a free copy of this book was given to the writer through a Goodreads giveaway. To read the original review on that website please visit: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27919353-are-you-living-your-resume-or-your-eulogy