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Embers: One Ojibway's Meditations

4.5  ·  Rating details ·  421 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
"Life sometimes is hard. There are challenges. There are difficulties. There is pain. As a younger man I sought to avoid them and only ever caused myself more of the same. These days I choose to face life head on—and I have become a comet. I arc across the sky of my life and the harder times are the friction that lets the worn and tired bits drop away. It's a good way to t ...more
Paperback, 176 pages
Published October 29th 2016 by Douglas McIntyre (first published 2016)
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EMBERS: ONE OJIBWAY'S MEDITATIONS by Richard Wagamese has a beautiful cover and full page gorgeous coloured photos. The paperback book of 176 pages feels so smooth, lovely and elegant. Holding this beautiful book in my hands while reading gives me a peaceful serene feeling.

EMBERS is perhaps Richard Wagamese's most personal volume to date. Honest, evocative and articulate, he explores the various manifestations of stillness, harmony, trust, reverence, persistence, gratitude and joy.

Of the many
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Kilmeny Hall, Bill McGann
Unlike most people who have written reviews about Embers, I dislike the photographs that were used in this book. To me, they are far too slick, and seem like stock photos that you would see on motivational posters and PowerPoint presentations. The writings and meditations are wonderful and original, and I wish the photos were as unique. That said, I loved the book and will be purchasing a copy that I can refer back to again and again. Wagamese's fiction has a comfortable, easy style (even when t ...more
Sherry Monger
Feb 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
What a gem! Speaking directly from his thoughts, experiences and culture, Richard Wagamese meditates on his life lessons - many of which were hard fought and won. Yearning to become a "spiritual bad-ass", he takes us along on his journey and shares the insight he has earned. Wagamese is eloquent and articulate and the book is illustrated with gorgeous photography.
The many meditations in Embers require thoughtful consideration and contemplation - a perfect bedside companion for the quiet times.
A meditative read, but not one I can rate.

I read this over a few months, here and there. Sometimes it resonated, sometimes it didn't. It really depended on the day. Worth a perusal, for sure, as I love love love Wagamese's writing; but this book is too personal for me to actually attach a star-rating to. It just doesn't feel right to do it.
May 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Such a beautiful book. I read this shortly after the death of the author, so found myself grieving the loss of his life while celebrating this magnificent voice. I loved the wisdom of Old Woman and carry her with me during my day. "Hard things break. Soft things never do. Be like the grass. It gets stepped on and flattened but regains its shape again once the pressure passes. It is humble, accepting and soft. That is what makes its strong." Old Man's "Keep what's true in front of you. That way y ...more
Natasha Penney
Dec 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017-bingo
Just beautiful. Utterly beautiful. Quiet, reflective, profound. Even better than I anticipated. Wagamese remains my favorite Canadian author for precisely the magic he's able to create with words in this book.
This precious book nourishes the reader with the patience and openness to really savor the deep wisdom RW has distilled here from his years of trial and experience
May 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A short book, beautifully written and illustrated. In it the writer guides one through peaceful moments of meditation, reflecting on life and nature. It is rich in feeling and meaning.
I like to share one of his thoughts:

"Thanks for the blessings that are already present in my life
I ask for nothing
I only offer thanks.
Then in gratitude and humility
I enter the journey of each day."

Richard Wagamese will be missed by many of his followers. He passed away less than three months ago.
Oct 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Spiritual musings from one of my favourite authors! How to live life, treat others, treat nature and treat "the Creator ". - whomever you decide that is.
All makes sense and all beautifully written. The book itself has lovely photographs to go with the just as lovely thoughts.
Dec 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
New Year … New Books … New Reviews
… same ‘ol me so far though … but I’m working on it, slowly but surely!
Now on to the business at hand that I came here for.

I could/would never think myself accomplished enough or even begin to claim to be gifted enough to write a very deep or meaningful or even enlightened enough review of this book, but if ever there was a book that ever so gently encouraged me to try to do so and could possibly inspire me to share more of my thoughts and connect with the diff
Kathy Stinson
Jan 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Richard Wagamese's morning meditations beautifully presented in combination with photographs from various sources, often revealing the wisdom of his years and culture and his becoming the man he is and wishes to be, and their meaning occasionally opaque to this reader's eyes. It might be better to pick up this book and dip into it over a period of time, rather than reading it cover to cover. My preference in RW's writing is for his wonderful novels in which he brings his characters so fully to l ...more
Apr 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bingo-2017
I'm so grateful for Wagamese sharing his meditations with me. They are beautiful and profound. I need to buy this book and keep it by my ned to read a passage each morning.
Inspiring grounding statements collected in an accessible format.
Mara Shaw
Feb 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This sits beside my bed for meditative inspiration. Earth-centred and lovely.
I absolutely loved Embers: One Ojibway’s Meditations. Reading it once however is not enough. While I am not usually one to reread books, this is a book I want to keep close beside me to read again and again for daily inspiration. It is that jam packed full of wisdom and consciousness and I am confident that reading only four lines will have a positive impact on my day. Every line in the book is filled with gratitude and love - the absolute only way to live life.

My introduction to Richard Wagames
❀ Susan G
Dec 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016-reads

Anyone who has been following my blog this year will know that I am a big fan of Richard Wagamese. After reading The Medicine Walk, I could not wait to read more of his work including Indian Horse, Ragged Company and One Native Life. This author writes beautiful fiction that makes readers really think about important issues such as residential schools, the importance of family, homelessness and substance abuse.

The Embers: One Ojibway’s Meditations is a uni
Katherine Krige
Nov 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a book of meditations and as such could be picked up and browsed through at any page. Wagamese uses great imagery and strong prose to help his readers find a truer path and their own personal wisdom. This book might live on my bedside for a while, just so I can flip through the occasional pages to delve deeper into his insights.
Cathryn Wellner
May 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: inspiration
Richard Wagamese's death was a shattering loss for all who admired his writing and his being. In addition to his novels and writings and interviews, he would share generously on his Facebook page, then fall silent, only to reappear again when his work or his demons loosened their hold for a time. He struggled with life's big questions but was always grateful for the teachings that shone a light on the rough journey. In Embers he offers his insights as short meditations.

Douglas & McIntyre cre
E Williams
Aug 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
I started this book on the advice of a mutual friend who knew Wagamese and admired his work. I was enjoying it when he died earlier this year, and slower in finishing it after that because I wanted to stretch out and absorb every word. Part mantra, part life advice, part manifesto, part poem, the book captures the insight of an artist coming to the daily understanding of himself. I am glad to have read it and plan to read his other work: I am sad for the other stories we have lost with his passi ...more
Mar 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful book of meditations on life gleaned from conversations and writing over the past few years. I was fortunate to be a part of this process. Richard's friendship and his work had a profound impact on my life. I will cherish these meditations as I did our conversations and keep them close to my heart.

I highly recommend all of his work.
Aug 20, 2017 rated it liked it
My favourite quote: "It occurs to me that the secret of fully being here, walking the skin of this planet, is to learn to see things as though I were looking at them for the first time, or the last."
Aug 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is so beautiful. Reading it feels like the clarity you get from jumping into a lake or the serenity of sitting in the forest all alone. Ultimate recommendation!
I really enjoyed these meditations, especially when he'd ask "old woman" questions.
Petra Morin
Sep 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites
This is a book that I will continue to read forever.....................................
Gord Jones
Jan 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have just finished reading Embers: One Ojibway's Meditations by Richard Wagamese. It's easy to tell that these meditations come straight form the authors heart. Although the book is just 172 pages, I found that in each page I either found an inspiring message or something thoughtful or profound for me to ponder.

In fact I found Embers so meaningful that first thing each morning I read a page by selecting the page number by random.

Here is one of his meditations that I found both moving and inspi
Dec 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituality
I read this over 2 days. It was beautiful and uplifting and made me reflect on the power of Wagamese's writing over the years, in light of his passing in 2017. I am Anishnaabe and I live in an Anishnaabe community. I am friends with community members and family who have some of His storytelling gifts but really he has grown so much as a writer since his early works ( ie A Quality of Light) and he truly was a unique voice. This is personal and raw and much different than his fiction. In the past ...more
Laine David
Oct 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
What an inspiring collection of meditations to take with you into every moment of every day! As I continue on a mental health recovery journey Richard Wagamese's words carry comfort, offer guidance, and arouse feelings of gratitude and strengthened spirituality. One of my favourite parts of this collection of every day reflections is that Richard Wagamese does not act as an expert of meditation or even a teacher, but rather he just shares the observations that he made along his own healing journ ...more
Jo-Mary Crowchild-Fletcher
Jan 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Being indigenous who lives the traditional lifestyle, this book hit me hard. There were teachings on traditional lifestyle, writing, and how to live generally.

This piece of writing tells you of who Wagamese is and brings to light of his journey. It is a short book, super easy to read (I read most of it while stranded in an airport for an hour), and touches your spirit. He is an absolutely an amazing author. You will not be disappointed by reading this book.

Hiy hiy Richard!
Luciana Babocci
Mar 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book of meditations & reflections. It gives great insight into Richard's life but it also makes you think deeply, as well, and I could really relate to a lot of his reflections on life.

I loved the way the book was designed, with photos, quotes, different made it interesting & created moments where you could stop and reflect.

Richard was a talented author/writer who will be missed.
Jan 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
For me, the best part of reading a Richard Wagamese book is his Indigenous worldview. I always feel that he writes for us, Indigenous peoples.
There are so many books written about us but not by us. Wagamese has gifted the literary world with books and stories that are beautiful and Indigenous.
Embers offers people meditations, reflections, prayers and stories that are thoughtful, simple but yet extremely nourishing for the spirit.
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Richard Wagamese was one of Canada's foremost Native authors and storytellers. He worked as a professional writer since 1979. He was a newspaper columnist and reporter, radio and television broadcaster and producer, documentary producer and the author of twelve titles from major Canadian publishers.

“I am constantly surrounded by noise: TV, texts, the internet, music, meaningless small talk, my thinking. All of it blocks my consciousness, my ability to her the ME that exists beneath the cacophony. I am my consciousness, my awareness of my circumstance, my presence in every moment. So I cultivate silence every morning. I sit in it, bask in it, wrap it around myself, and hear and feel me. Then, wherever the day takes me, the people I meet are the beneficiaries of my having taken that time - they get the real me, not someone shaped and altered by the noise around me. Silence is the stuff of life.” 7 likes
“There is such a powerful eloquence in silence. True genius is knowing when to say nothing, to allow the experience, the moment itself, to carry the message, to say what needs to be said. Words are less important, less effective than feeling. When you can sit in perfect silence with someone, you truly know how to communicate.” 6 likes
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