Official Review: How to Meditate and Why

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katiesquilts
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Official Review: How to Meditate and Why

Post by katiesquilts » 10 Jul 2018, 02:09

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "How to Meditate and Why" by Mara M. Zimmerman.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Mara M. Zimmerman has meditated all throughout her life and has taught meditation and yoga for over 20 years. In her nonfiction book How to Meditate and Why, Zimmerman lays out the basics of meditation and asserts that meditation is beneficial for everyone, even if you meditate for just one minute each day. She covers various types of meditation performed by different religions, but insists that you do not have to believe in a religion to meditate in that way. In fact, meditation can be as little or as much as you want it to be. Although Zimmerman gives readers a few suggestions and ideas for meditation techniques, she does not try to push one technique over another. The entire emphasis of her book is focused on making you, the reader, feel more at home in your body and helping you learn how to be still and connect to the world around you.

I chose to review this book because I'm a very anxious person and I like to always be in control of myself and my surroundings. However, recently I've realized that there are things I'll never have control over, and I have struggled not to let that and other negative events overwhelm me. As good as I am at grasping on to things and keeping my protective walls from crumbling, I'm probably not so good at just letting things go. This is especially true when it comes to my anger and grudges I hold against people that I know are poisoning my mood, but I still feel vindicated for having them because I know that that person is wrong, without a doubt.

I have tried meditation two or three times, only one of those times successfully. In that time, I was able to completely empty my mind using a mental image and lost track of time for almost half an hour...but because I had my eyes closed, I wasn't sure if I had just fallen asleep sitting up or not. That's why I appreciated the methods mentioned in Zimmerman's book. She says that meditation is all about controlling your breathing and improving your posture, because focusing on these things that we take for granted each day will bring us back into the present. Plus, she says that meditating for just one minute each day is enough to have a small effect on our bodies and mental health. I'm all up for that!

Unfortunately, I did find some faults in the book. I prefer to be told explicitly how to do something and why and although Zimmerman's title matches that perfectly, I thought some of her suggestions were vague. I know this is because she wanted to treat all of the methods equally, but I think she could have included a few more examples or suggestions for "getting in the meditative mood." Also, there were plenty of mistakes throughout the admittedly short book, as well as areas that said "Insert picture of ..." instead of the picture itself. I thought this might be because I received a pre-release PDF to review, but the book is already out on Amazon, probably with the same issues.

I'm definitely going to be incorporating some of Zimmerman's suggestions into my everyday life in the hopes of relieving stress and improving my health, posture, and outlook on life. Because of the abovementioned issues with the book, I can only rate it 3 out of 4 stars. However, I would recommend it to anyone who is interesting in meditation but not sure they want to jump right into the deep end from the start. This is the perfect book for people who want to test out the meditation waters but who don't want to change their everyday lifestyle very much, or who have a hard time believing in the mystic and religious stereotypes that are often applied to meditation.

******
How to Meditate and Why
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John D Beloved
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Post by John D Beloved » 11 Jul 2018, 10:18

Thanks For Your Review,the Writer Done A Great Job And Help People To Know The End From The Begining.

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Post by Cecilia_L » 11 Jul 2018, 20:19

Unfortunately, I did find some faults in the book. I prefer to be told explicitly how to do something and why and although Zimmerman's title matches that perfectly, I thought some of her suggestions were vague. I know this is because she wanted to treat all of the methods equally, but I think she could have included a few more examples or suggestions for "getting in the meditative mood."
I understand. I find I often feel this way after reading how-to books. Thanks for interesting review!

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Post by MICHAEL HASSAN » 12 Jul 2018, 04:59

Wow it's nice. Thanks for your review. you did a nice job and aid for people to meditate.
But, i wish she could have added a few more examples and suggestions. Oh it's great job.

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Post by bookierme » 12 Jul 2018, 08:31

This is not my kind of book so I won't be reading it. I commend you for writing an excellent review though!

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Post by ButterscotchCherrie » 13 Jul 2018, 14:42

It is interesting to know that the author references the techniques used by different religions. I have never seen that done before. I've come across Buddhist meditation, yoga techniques for relaxation and pain relief, and new age-y visualizations. It would be important for me to know what the unique selling point of a book about meditation is because I have read so many. Thanks for the interesting review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 17 Jul 2018, 08:46

I haven't really done any meditation as I'm a Christian, but I could definitely see how it could be useful. However, I'm kind of like you. I'd like to be told exactly how to do something, so the vague suggestions would just go over my head. Still, it sounds like you did get some use for it. Thanks for the information.
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Post by misatifelix » 17 Jul 2018, 08:49

Meditation is a therapy that most people do not know about.Reading this book will definitely empower me not only on how to meditate but also why I should.

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Post by Eva Darrington » 18 Jul 2018, 17:03

What a great review. I am a meditator and am always interested in how meditation goes for others. Like you, I think I would appreciate some specific instructions, maybe for a couple of different styles or traditions. I will read this book and was inspired by your review. Thanks for a great one.
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Post by joycechitwa » 19 Jul 2018, 10:46

For meditation experts and all those interested in the topic, this is a good book to try. It would be good to know the various types of meditation, why it's used and what expectations to have once you have meditated. Also, the simple explanation that meditation is simply controlling your breathing and improving your siting posture, really demystifies the whole concept of meditation.

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Post by Jackmem » 19 Jul 2018, 11:56

What a great review there. I like it, its a book I want to read. Great work!

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Post by ogu7545 » 24 Jul 2018, 04:31

I never thought of meditation as having to empty your mind or controlling your breath and all that stuff. Meditation to me had always had to do with focusing on a subject and just thinking of that subject in total exclusion of all others. This review gives me a new insight and like someone said, it demystifies meditation for me. I'll love to read the book.

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Post by sharon pamela » 24 Jul 2018, 04:49

Thats a great review.. excellent work!

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Post by Plfern » 24 Jul 2018, 20:30

Good review, katiesquilts, on How to Meditate and Why. I think meditation would do people a lot of good. However, I'm not so sure the author is accurate on needing to empty your mind of everything when you meditate. When your mind is empty, then it is susceptible to having unclean thoughts enter in. It is the devil's tool. It is better to meditate on God's Word than to empty your mind fully. I don't think I'll be reading this book.

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katiesquilts
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Post by katiesquilts » 31 Jul 2018, 18:32

Plfern wrote:
24 Jul 2018, 20:30
Good review, katiesquilts, on How to Meditate and Why. I think meditation would do people a lot of good. However, I'm not so sure the author is accurate on needing to empty your mind of everything when you meditate. When your mind is empty, then it is susceptible to having unclean thoughts enter in. It is the devil's tool. It is better to meditate on God's Word than to empty your mind fully. I don't think I'll be reading this book.
Actually, the author doesn't insist on your emptying your mind. I just mentioned that as the way I personally meditated once!

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