4 out of 4 stars
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The Unbound Soul: A Visionary Guide to Spiritual Transformation and Enlightenment is a great non-fiction read for anyone interested in spiritual philosophy, emotional health, religions, the multiverse theory, or the human condition. Author Richard Haight delves deeply into his view of the mind and soul. The book details his real-life experience as he finds his life path. Early in his life he has a vision that dramatically changes his future. This creates the foundation of his story. Although the reader wanders with the author far from this event, it acts as an ever-present tether to the central point of the book. He also discusses challenges in his adult life. For example, he describes working multiple jobs overseas. He discusses his insecurities, roadblocks and personal struggles. Richard Haight’s philosophy includes meditation, martial arts, and yoga. He discusses basics like exercise and eating habits but does not shy away from more serious subjects like life after death. It is a mix of memories, opinions, instructions, quotations, and musings woven together. He does not utilize a traditional storytelling flow but instead develops a profoundly interesting and surprisingly cohesive tapestry on a fragmented timeline. It is anything but ordinary.
This work of non-fiction has a rapidly changing style that reminds me of having a conversation with a new acquaintance. The author speaks candidly with the reader. The tone is thoughtful and sincere. At times it reads like an autobiography and at other times like a stream of consciousness. It is part instruction manual and part cautionary tale. This book is never boring! Chapter after chapter he unfolds more layers. It is a very complex read that took me a long time to get through. I enjoyed every minute and found myself reading very slowly and carefully to make sure I was absorbing the information. I often found it necessary to go back and re-read previous passages as well. That said, don’t be intimidated. It is approachable and easy to understand prose.
My rating for this book is 4 out of 4 stars. The Unbound Soul is 197 pages long. It is an excellent work of non-fiction which I thoroughly enjoyed reading. I particularly enjoyed the serious honesty of the author. This book opened my mind and has truly changed my worldview. I would recommend it and am going to promote it among my friends and family. I did struggle at times with not being in an open frame of mind and not having the necessary amount of concentration to devote to the reading.
The Unbound Soul seems professionally edited and formatted well for reading on a Kindle. I did notice one sentence where a space was missing after the punctuation on page 52. The author reveals to the reader that he has labored with a learning disability that made it difficult for him when learning to read and write. This does not show in this very well written book. That said, he does tend toward frequent run-on sentences. There are a lot of complex sentences with bountiful semicolons. I honestly am not good enough at grammar to know if he was using them properly all the time. For one example, Chapter 11 starts with a run-on sentence. He also frequently ends sentences with prepositions.
In addition to having appeal for readers interested in philosophy and self-help, The Unbound Soul is worthwhile for readers who enjoy coming of age stories. Even if you do not care to follow his advice on how to live, the book is an interesting look at the life of a man who has dedicated himself to following his spiritual path. It is truly fascinating to read an honest account of a person’s struggles and triumphs. Richard Haight opens himself up to the reader, and that makes this book a great read regardless of how you choose to apply his words in your own life. That said, this book may not appeal to readers who are looking for a linear timeline. There is not a focused plot consisting of introduction, body, and conclusion. He does not spend much time on descriptive language to set the scene. Some readers may find the style abrupt. In Haight’s discussions of religion there are times when he may rub some people of faith the wrong way. I speculate that religious readers could be challenged by this book. It could be uncomfortable or problematic for them to reconcile Haight’s views with their own beliefs. I would challenge even those who would not normally read this type of book to allow the author a chance to open their perspective.
The Unbound Soul
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