I was inspired. This is a very simple and direct book. The Word of Wisdom is subject to many different interpretations, and this is only one side, butI was inspired. This is a very simple and direct book. The Word of Wisdom is subject to many different interpretations, and this is only one side, but I don't think you can go too wrong with it. I read this over the summer (as I was on my own path back to vegetarianism and healthier eating). I was slowly reducing my dairy intake at the time as well, and her words helped me to make a more drastic change. I quit cold-turkey, and I think her words were helpful in that respect. I often found that her words rang true for me. I have been reading and listening to many health books lately, and in the last nine months I have lost 30 pounds. I had lost much of it before reading this book, but after switching to a whole foods plant-based diet this summer, I was amazed that I was able to easily drop those last few extra pounds (the ones that had always been a struggle). ...more
I thought the storyline had potential, but I don't think it worked. I didn't like the main characters. I didn't like the feel of this book. I won't neI thought the storyline had potential, but I don't think it worked. I didn't like the main characters. I didn't like the feel of this book. I won't need to read any others from this series. ...more
I read this because it was there. My daughter had picked it up from the library. These days, I don't often take time to review such quick reads, but II read this because it was there. My daughter had picked it up from the library. These days, I don't often take time to review such quick reads, but I loved the little "Lessons for Life and Storytelling" sections of this book. Interspersed within this story of stories are such little snippets of wisdom as
-"There's more than one way to be crippled. I don't mean that you can have a crippled foot or a crippled knee or a crippled hand. I mean you can be crippled in your heart." -"Sometimes I wonder if the stories you tell begin to tug at your life, begin to change it in some mysterious way. Not just that you learn from stories, though that can happen, too. But even deeper: could it be that, by choosing certain stories, you draw to yourself the happenings inside them? So that your life begins to echo your stories?" -"In the old tales, there is power in words. Words are what you use to summon a jinn, or to open an enchanted door, or to cast a spell. You can do everything else perfectly, but if you don't say the right words, it won't work. If you know how to use words, you don't have to be strong enough to wield a scimitar or have aries at your command. Words are how the powerless can have power." -"Every storyteller has a special way she likes to end her tales...When you hear those words---those ending words---you know that's all there is. But real life isn't like that. Its endings are squirmier than the ones in stories. You try to tuck them in neatly and they kick the blankets off. The thing about life is, no matter what happens to you, it goes on. What seems like an ending is really a beginning in disguise." -"Still, there's more to disguise than changing your clothes. The best disguise can be just a look." -"If we don't share our stories---trading them across our borders as freely as spices and ebony and silk---we will all be strangers forever." -"Stories are thick with meanings. You can fall in love with a story for what you think it says, but you can't know for certain where it will lead your listeners. If you're telling a tale to teach children to be generous, they may fix instead on the part where your hero hides in an olive oil jar, then spend the whole next day fighting about who gets to try it first. People take what they need from the stories they hear. The tale is often wiser than the teller." -"When you're telling a story, you can suggest things that would get you in trouble if you were just stating your own opinion." -"In my favorite stories, if something bad happened to you in the end, it was because you clearly deserved it. My auntie Chava used to tell me that it's not like that in real life, and I shouldn't expect it to be." -"My auntie Chava tight me never to pay anyone in advance. Don't pay the porter until you've arrived at where you are going...you may have to pay a few coins in advance. Even so, Auntie Chava said, until it's done, you should always hold something back." -"Sometimes, when you listen to a story, you get a new idea of what is possible in the world. I don't mean just strange customer and faraway places---though you can learn a lot from those. What I mean is that you can get a new idea of what's possible for you---something you never thought of, or you never saw very much of in real life." -"There is another way of being a storyteller. Like a spider, you can spin a fragile thread out of your own life---from the shadows of your dreams. Then you weave it and snip it and stitch it. At last, you put on the poor garment and wear it out into the world." -"There are some stories that you don't tell aloud, that you make up and tell silently to yourself." -"My auntie Chava used to tell me to chew my words before letting them out. 'Seven times, Marjan,' she would say. 'Chew them seven times.' If you let your words go buzzing out of your mouth like bees, she always told me, they will come back and sting you." -"She did not approve of my telling old tales to the neighborhood children... But I would say to her, "Look at Shahrazad. Telling stories can be very practical. 'Stories can save your life.'"
Aren't those tidbits lovely? It is for these that I give the book a 5....more
I listened to this and found it fascinating. In each chapter I found myself surprised by the research and ideas presented. During and after listeningI listened to this and found it fascinating. In each chapter I found myself surprised by the research and ideas presented. During and after listening to various sections, I found myself wondering about other applications and implications beyond the material presented. For example, how might growing up in a fairly homogeneous environment affect my own children's prejudices? I found the ideas presented about facial expressions extremely interesting. I watched as my baby looked to my expressions for clues to meaning. I was also motivated to change in how I reacted to slight annoyances. I realized that my children (even my teens) look to my face for clues about my feelings toward them. Later, I wondered if our habits could indeed change who we are physically. Could our countenances reveal our true nature? "I say unto you, can ye look up to God at that day with a pure heart and clean hands? I say unto you, can you look up, having the image of God engraven upon your countenances?" (Alma 5:19). If this is true, how indeed would God's face look? How might an infinity of goodness change ones outward appearance? Would unending love indeed shine from His face? Note: This is not a "religious" book, but my own thoughts were occasionally drawn in that direction. ...more