Living Nonduality Paperback – Aug 2 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
This is one of them.
The author's clear seeing makes it possible for anyone to "Get the message", of non-duality.
The author states "I had no teacher, so I can attest that one is not necessary".
This one statement, was all that was required to begin an investigation of this book.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Wolfe's writing is similarly uncompromising. There is nothing soft about it. At page 80 of Living Nonduality: `Our first responsibility to our self is to arrive at a state of spiritual clarity--permanent, self-evident and unequivocally beyond doubt.' Spiritual clarity is his point--his only point.
Towards that end, Wolfe covers some of the same ground covered by other non-duality teachers. But he does it with unique insight, in the language of our time and culture. For example, at page 19:
`In short, what the teachers are saying is that any object in the universe is--despite our giving it some separative name--a manifestation of the Absolute (or Source). They are also saying that the subject is not an exception to this truth: that everything in the universe is a manifestation of the same singular Source. So, at the level of the most basic reality, the subject--I--and the object--tree--are the same thing: an aspect (although different in appearance) of the Absolute. Thus, if we look beyond the separative names, there is only one universal thing, the Absolute.'
As you can see, Wolfe's core message is classical Advaita--i.e., `not two.' But his context is right now.
At page 133, a questioner states, `My life feels meaningless, repetitious and full of conflict, even after all the years of spiritual search.' Wolfe's response? `Perhaps it's because of all the years of spiritual search.' His are not the words of a man in the `guru business.' He is definitely not encouraging a search for `more.' In fact, the contrary is true.
What does Wolfe want from you? Nothing. What does he want for you? That you should be absolutely, unconditionally free.
If you feel compelled to search, Wolfe's book is an excellent place to start--or finish.
(4.5 out of 5 stars)
I don't want to give the wrong impression, however. For all its grandeur, this book is incredibly accessible. There is an exquisite heart in this work, and a fierce benevolence, that is communicated simply and straightforwardly. Though Mr. Wolfe is unwavering in his presentation, he comes at it so creatively I had a great sense of adventure in approaching each new short section, or "monograph." This adventure was wonderfully unexpected, and inspiring in its own right.
Mr. Wolfe is clearly a grounded being, something I especially appreciated in reading his book. He has a breadth and depth of "worldly" knowledge and experience, and draws on both in his reflections and his replies to inquirers. He is also deeply attentive to and appreciative of nature (see, for example, Where I am Not, p. 20, and Yea, Listen to the Mockingbird, p. 443), and I found these reflections to be some of Mr. Wolfe's loveliest and most inspiring.
There is so much beauty, wisdom and inspiration in Living Nonduality! For anyone drawn to nonduality teachings, this book, and Mr. Wolfe himself, are incredible blessings.
The book is constructed in such a way that it has no real beginning or end. One can flip it open to any page among the 400+ pages over which it travels and begin reading. It simply doesn't matter. Each monograph has at its heart the same message of nonduality that has been spoken of for centuries. The monograph entitled "Ungrasping" is alone worth the twenty bucks. It is often stated that the absolute is inexplicable, but this monograph gets as about as close as you one can.
In the end, though, what makes this book so special is that Mr. Wolfe is as wonderful with the craft of writing as he is at revealing the true nature of ourselves and the world. He is as clear and clean with both aspects as you will find in a nondual writer. Accessible, profound, and inspiring, I highly recommend it.
I met Robert many years ago in the middle of an intensive spiritual search, and as much as I am skeptical about such things, Robert seems to be one of these people who show up when a person is actually ready to let go of all of the stories that are obstructing a direct experience of nonduality.
Having had the extreme good fortune of spending many an evening in dialogue with Robert exploring many of the issues beautifully articulated in this book, I was extremely pleased to discover that someone had put together this wonderful collection of Robert's writings so that a wider audience could also experience the gift which he unconditionally offers.
If there's a genuine passion for clarity inside you, and you've been reading the likes of J. Krishnamurti for many years and still feel confused, then try this book.