As Ken Wilber put it, one can no more afford to ignore the work of Adi Da than one can afford to become his student. This edition of his teachings on...moreAs Ken Wilber put it, one can no more afford to ignore the work of Adi Da than one can afford to become his student. This edition of his teachings on dietary practice predates the tendency of the First, Last, and Only Seventh-Stage Realizer to Capitalize virtually Every Damn Word, in an Obscure Pattern like some mad dyslexic german, and it is therefore far more readable than much of his later work. Also, while the book is certainly intended in part as a recruiting tool for their community, The Daist Free Communion or whatever they're called these days, they do not lay it on too thick, and specifically attempt to make the suggestions useful even to those outside their community. There are some true gems of wisdom in here (see the quotes page here for examples) and lots of dross, especially if you have no plan to grow your own sprouts and forever eat like some 70s-era Marin County hippie.
Unlike many spiritual teachers, he does allow science in, and several health professionals and physicians are cited, along with the experimental results of the Daist Free Communion themselves. He also allows for humor, and makes good use of several syndicated cartoon reprints to lighten the intellectual load. The advice on fasting practices seems to me quite useful—if you're into that sort of thing, which periodically I am, though not for nearly as long at a stretch as they recommend for advanced practitioners—and I'm certain I will infrequently return to look over some of the health tips, especially when I'm feeling particularly unwell but short of sick.(less)
While many of the techniques presented in this slim volume are entirely worthwhile and of great value in making oneself clear and defusing potentially...moreWhile many of the techniques presented in this slim volume are entirely worthwhile and of great value in making oneself clear and defusing potentially tense communications, I still disagree with some of the author's fundamental categorization of "needs." While it may be useful, or even necessary under certain circumstances, to address the desires of another person in addition to, or even perhaps prior to, their needs, I continue to maintain that there is an important distinction to be made between genuine human needs and mere desires, and that kowtowing excessively to the desires of others, while entirely likely to smooth out an otherwise difficult conversation, is of limited value in the long-term. Reinforcing the legitimacy, to say nothing of the primacy, of such desires can go quite a way toward reifying them in the minds of their holders, and thence to create an increased sense of entitlement. All that said, I still find the techniques described to be extremely useful, especially in such cases as "arguing about the toothpaste" when there is clearly a deeper and more important issue underlying a given conflict. What flaws there are, in many instances, are more the flaws of novice to intermediate practitioners of NVC rather than of the author himself, as is shown in many of the included examples.(less)