2 out of 4 stars
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The spiritual quest is found in every human being. Some people suppress this inner spiritual voice and others pay much heed to this inner call. This book is the one man’s journey from the delusional path to the spiritual path. The Unbound Soul by Richard L. Haight is a memoir that describes the lifelong transformational journey of the author. His spiritual awakening process began at a very young age (eight-year-old) when he started attending Biblical class at Mrs. Pacetti’s home. It reached its climax when he saw Jesus in his dream commanding him to find his bones as they are the core of his teachings. This message clarified his path.
The book comprises 24 chapters under four parts. The first part describes the author’s road to meditative journey in which he traveled to the Amazon and stayed there for a while. Then he moved to Japan where he learned and taught martial arts. It was the place where he connected his spiritual quest to the wisdom that led him to start a transformed enlightened life. In this book, he discussed his most enlightening technique which he called “Isness Inspirience” (a deeply profound counter with the divine that radically changed his life). Furthermore, he differentiates between the consciousness and mind and maintains that how to get tuned to mind is a source of suffering. Moreover, he introduces readers with some useful exercises for the healing of mind and body. The fourth part emphasizes the connection between soul and spirit. It focuses on the hidden energies and the blocks that impede man’s way to the process of awakening and achieving unconditional love. He puts the reader on the psychedelic path and highlights the role of Shamanic Plants for spiritual awakening.
This book is not only a memoir; but also a spiritual guide that awakens the inner conscious of its readers through different healing practices of physical and spiritual well-being. I liked the author’s style that was convincing and simple. Richard L. Haight along with his teacher Sensei transformed the martial art practice into a new form in which he infused wisdom with spirituality. He beautifully captured the mental state of a person who is perplexed, not knowing which path to choose (the right one) among many wrong paths. The most adorable part was the author’s dream in which Jesus commanded him to explore the essence of his teachings that have been marred by alterations and have lost the real message of Jesus revealed by God. But later on, (unfortunately) he couldn’t retain to his earlier dream. Instead, he shifted to other meditation practices that may take its followers to a certain level of spiritual enrichment but is unable to show a permanent solution of their inner enigma as it can only be achieved by truly following divine religions.
Spirituality can be defined in different terms according to one’s background. However, Haight’s perception about spirituality is true in a way which he calls “Isness Inpirience” because everyone in life encounters such miraculous happenings that leave you to ponder over your existence, purpose, and limitations. However, despite his life-long quest for truth and self-actualization, I couldn’t find him more than a meditative person who spent many years of his life to purify his soul through physical training in form of martial arts or seeking spiritual enrichment in form of Buddha’s teachings or following some mixture of religious philosophies.
He adored his book with different mystical and philosophical anecdotes of Tou Te Ching. In addition, some of the techniques shared by the author were quite interesting such as the Warrior’s Meditation and the Dance of the Self (This just reminded me of the dance of Rumi’s followers). Hence, people interested in meditative techniques for the peace of mind should consult this book. Some of the concepts about reincarnation and other set believe were quite dissatisfying for me, and these may be disliked by readers. Though this book has many beneficial techniques and the message given by the author is appealing in some respect; however, the author couldn’t develop the real harmony, and some of his life events look superficial. In fact, this book didn’t appeal to me much. On the editing side, this book seems to be professionally edited as I could not find any significant error except a few punctuation mistakes. Nevertheless, owing to my earlier reservations, I rate this book 2 out of 4 stars. I would recommend it to the readers who seek spiritual awakening through meditation and alternative healing practices
The Unbound Soul
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