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April 2017

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kenshin courage

I can sometimes go for months without finding anything in Audible.com to interest me greatly, but every once in a while, I find something I'm excited about. This month, it was two things!

The first is a book called "Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife" by Eben Alexander. Alexander is an academic neurosurgeon - i.e., a surgeon and a scientist - who had a near-death experience of an unusual and profound kind. I'll spare y'all any details and go right into why I consider this book a treasure, so much so that I plan to buy it in either Kindle or real book or both. Dr. Alexander brought back his experience of the afterlife, and due to the nature of the coma he was in, all the usual medical/scientific theories of why he couldn't actually have been in heaven did not apply. If you want or need belief in life after death or in heaven itself, this is a fascinating book. What made it wonderful for me, personally, is that everything he describes fits perfectly into the spiritual beliefs that began for me when I was about 5 years old and have continued to develop through time. It was a fit so close that it should have been scary or exciting, but instead my reaction was calm, like "Of course that's how it is," as if I were putting on an old, comfortable coat. My belief is strong enough that I don't need confirmation, but it was still a deep pleasure to read this book.

There is a quote that is tangentially relevant, which has been in my mind for a few weeks now - "I've found that just surviving was a noble fight". It's from Billy Joel's song, "Angry Young Man". So I picked my dear Kenshin for the image on this post.

The other item that Audible blessed me with is a new series (at least, new to me!) called "The Great Courses". It's a large collection of lecture courses on a wide variety of topics. For this month's credit, I picked up "The Other Side of History: Daily Life in the Ancient World", a series of 48 lectures, about 1/2 hour each. I'm eagerly looking forward to this, and if it's as good as I think it will be, my next venture will be a lecture series on meditation.


I've heard varying reports on Alexander's book; but I'm glad you enjoyed it and that it resounded with your beliefs so strongly. ♥ The Great Courses sound really interesting as well!

I'm still reading Alexander McCall Smith's 44 Scotland Street series and enjoying it immensely. I can't seem to get into the ones set in Africa, although everyone else loves them. I guess I prefer Scotland. ;) I also am planning on a re-read of Fruits Basket and the Merlin trilogy by Mary Stewart this summer. I tend to get nostalgic in my reading choices in the summertime, and long to read books/series I've loved and/or read during summers gone by.
As I think I've told you, I adore the African ones. But I love the Scots ones, too. In fact, I don't think I've read a series by him that I didn't like.

I don't really recall the Mary Stewart series, although I know I read them - in fact, I believe I still have them on my shelf. That would be a bit of nostalgia, wouldn't it? I re-read a lot of things, but most often Stephen King's novels. Does that make me weird? hee. Seriously, I love going back to revisit a world in a novel. I just do it erratically, not just in the summer. I especially do it when I'm tired or depressed, and maybe that's why you do it in the summer, because summers are so hard on you. (I was just reading about your summer today - good GOD. I hope things improve SOON!!)