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181. Religions of the World
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182. The Journey Of Crazy Horse: A
$17.95 $4.75
183. Anyway: The Paradoxical Commandments
184. Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind
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185. Sex and the City
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186. The Feynman Lectures on Physics:
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187. Funky Phonics.... and More: Reading
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188. The Dancing Wu Li Masters : An
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190. Agency & Partnership (Law
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191. Tomorrow's God : Our Greatest
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192. Italian New Testament
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193. Life on the Other Side: A Psychic's
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194. The Map That Changed the World:
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195. Getting to Yes: How To Negotiate
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196. Practicing the Power of Now: Essential
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197. Traveling Light Releasing The
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198. If It's Going to Be It's Up to
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199. Transforming the Difficult Child
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200. From Beirut to Jerusalem

181. Religions of the World
by Huston Smith, Smith Huston
list price: $69.95
our price: $69.95
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Asin: 1564553507
Catlog: Book (1997-03-01)
Publisher: Sounds True
Sales Rank: 431088
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Religions of the World Huston Smith

Take A Guided Tour of the World’s Wisdom - Join legendary author and teacher Huston Smith as he personally guides you on an epic tour of humanity’s great wisdom traditions on Religions of the World. Complete on ten cassettes, this inspiring curriculum shares the most treasured teachings at the heart of these great traditions:Taoism • Christianity • Judaism • Buddhism • Hinduism •Confucianism • Islam • Primal religions. Drawn from more than sixty years of direct experience, inquiry, and research by Huston Smith, here is perhaps the greatest story ever told: how religion comes alive with a sacred flame, bringing light into the darkest corners of the human soul. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive tapes by an expert
Ten cassettes, ten hours of lectures by the renown Huston Smith covering the role of religion is humankind's history, specifically covering Hinduism, Buddhism, Confusionism, Taoism, Judaism, Christianity and Islam plus the "primal religions" of "primitive" humans. I wish I'd had a professor like Huston Smith! ... Read more

182. The Journey Of Crazy Horse: A Lakota History
by Joseph M., III Marshall
list price: $34.95
our price: $23.07
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Asin: 1565118685
Catlog: Book (2004-10-07)
Publisher: HighBridge Audio
Sales Rank: 111342
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Book Description

Most of the world remembers Crazy Horse as a peerless warrior who brought theU.S.Army to its knees at the Battle of Little Bighorn. But to his fellow LakotaIndians, he wasa dutiful son and humble fighting man who—with valor, spirit, respect, andunparalleledleadership—fought for his people’s land, livelihood, and honor. In thisfascinatingbiography, Joseph Marshall, himself a Lakota Indian, creates a vibrant portraitof theman, his times, and his legacy.

Drawing on firsthand research and his culture’s rich oral tradition (rarelyshared outsidethe Native American community), Marshall reveals many aspects of Crazy Horse’slife,including details of the powerful vision that convinced him of his duty to helppreservethe Lakota homeland—a vision that changed the course of Crazy Horse’s life andspurredhim confidently into battle time and time again.

The Journey of Crazy Horse is the true story of how one man’s fight forhispeople’s survival roused his true genius as a strategist, commander, and trustedleader.And it is an unforgettable portrayal of a revered human being and a profoundcelebrationof a culture, a community, and an enduring way of life. ... Read more

183. Anyway: The Paradoxical Commandments : Finding Personal Meaning in a Crazy World
by Kent M. Keith
list price: $17.95
our price: $17.95
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Asin: 0399149554
Catlog: Book (2002-04-01)
Publisher: Putnam Berkley Audio
Sales Rank: 366337
Average Customer Review: 4.57 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

An inspiring book about the grace, wisdom, and happiness that come from facing the worst in our world with the best in ourselves.

Unabridged, 2 cassettes, 2 hours
... Read more

Reviews (14)

5-0 out of 5 stars Paradoxical Commandments
"Love begets Love." -Theodore Roethke

Kent M. Keith first wrote these commandments when he was 19. What a concept! He challenged himself to do what he felt was right even if people responded in the wrong ways. More than 25 years later, he discovered that Mother Teresa had hung these commandments on the wall of her children's home in Calcutta. This book was first published in 1968.

His Commandments show you that you should not limit yourself by what other people think of you. Some people are just difficult to love and some never give you the approval you may crave. Your parents may never be happy with your current position in life, you may always think that your parents could have done a better job in parenting, you can at times be disappointed that your friends don't show you unconditional love.

Sometimes people can be illogical and unreasonable. They may see the world in a completely different way and to your mind, they make absolutely no sense. It helps to see why they are viewing the world the way they are. So many times you learn about one fact in a person's life and your entire concept of them can change.

I think there are moments in life when people decide not to love others and supreme moments when people decide to love no matter what. It seems many people either don't show love because they don't approve of certain people or they simply don't have the time to reach out to people. You can literally shut your heart away in a little box inside of you or you can open that box and let all that love flow out. It is really up to you.

Kent says that:

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway. If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives. Do good anyway. If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway. The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway. The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway. People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway. What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway. People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway. Give the world the best you have and you'll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.

As he says: If approval and worthiness were really a prerequisite for love, there would be very little love in the world. Love at its best is unconditional."

What many people don't realize is that unconditional love can be a great joy or a terrible burden. Of course, we all want to be loved unconditionally. I think it is our most basic human need.

I have loved a few people in my life who didn't know how to love me back and I guess that is one of the most hurtful things in life. But for every situation where you are not loved, there are so many other situations where life can be beautiful, fulfilling and a true adventure.

If you feel you can't love other people, try being more accepting of yourself. When you learn to love who you are, it is easier to love everyone else.

"Your friend is the man who knows all about you, and still likes you." -Elbert Hubbard

Dedicated to my absolute best friend in the world.

5-0 out of 5 stars Finding Personal Meaning in a Crazy World
Kent M. Keith, has done the world a great service in writing this new book. The Paradoxical Commandments is a compendium of valuable insight relating to life. Overall the book conveys why one should adopt a philosophy of doing what is right and good and true, knowing a paradox may occur, but doing it anyway. The principles and philosophy and morals discussed provide the reader with a 10 item outline of how to achieve inner happiness even when facing bad things. Call the Paradoxical Commandments 10 reasons why one should on a personal level always choose to bring forth the best in ourselves in spite of being met by the worst from the world. All 10 of the Paradoxical Commandments are good reasons to take the high moral road on life's great journey. The book is a quick read and a guide to a short road to personal happiness. My advice is to buy this book, read it, take it to heart and pass it on to a friend.

5-0 out of 5 stars Simple, elegant, and sound advice.
I was given a copy of this book by my wonderful wife Michelle for this most recent Father's Day. I picked it up to skim through and despite having loads of work to do, read nearly the whole thing without slowing down. It is an encouraging and meaningful collection of wisdom on how to align our personal attitudes towards an often hostile environment.

There are ten basic "paradoxical commandments", which start with a realistic, although perhaps overly jaded, view of others. For example, the first "commandment" is "People are illogical, unreasonable, and self centered - Love them anyway". That is the general point to all of these, do what is right anyway.

What is really interesting is the path these "paradoxical" statements took. The author was amazed to find that something he had written 20 years before in college wound up on the wall at Mother Theresa's orphanage in Calcutta. What a surprise it was for him to see these listed in one of her memoirs, knowing that something you wrote was held in that high of esteem by someone as wonderfully selfless as she was.

My personal favorite is the section on "Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable - Be honest and frank anyway". In corporate America, there is often little reward, and much risk in being honest what with the always present threat or perception of politics and other power struggles in play. Yet, it has been shown time and again that an honest and frank discussion of the "current state" is the first step towards growth and development - of people or the business. This brief text gives encouragement to do the right thing, knowing full well the short term consequences may be painful. Kent gave some great examples of this, including being literally fired for one of his presentations which was simply an admonition to improve.

Sure, this book is merely a rehashing of wisdom one finds in Proverbs, or elsewhere in the Bible and other philosophical sources, but it is very worthwhile nonetheless. I recommend keeping a copy on your desk or nightstand for a simple and concise reality check when needed. Do the right thing, because it is the right thing to do, and despite the reality of the world - do it "Anyway".

1-0 out of 5 stars Not very realistic
This book unfortunately did not enlighten me at all! :( It is quite difficult to treat someone kindly when they continue to stab you in the back. Unfortunately we are living in a world where evil is progressing as each day passes. Just turn on the news and you will see that the principles in this book are hard to apply in life as we know today... I believe that you should treat others as you would like to be treated. Diplomacy is used in everyday situations but I believe in treating someone exactly how they treat you, like a mirror. If you are nice to someone and all they do is gossip about you and treat you like dirt, why should you just grin and bear it.. Things are only going to get worse because unfortunately people are becoming more selfish and ruthless. Sure, they are some good ones out there but it is hard to remember that when you are out in the road driving and you have people running stop signs or red lights or cutting in front of you. I think it is quite hard to just smile and wish that person a wonderful day...

5-0 out of 5 stars this is the coolest book
His Commandments have shown me that I should not limit myself by what other people think of me. Some people are just difficult to love and some never give will give me the approval I may need or want. The author teaches me the joys and virtues of doing good things for the sake of doing them, without expecting myself to be advanced or bettered in any way, and doing them even when it puts me at risk of becoming vulnerable. I believe that when we allow ourselves to love than we can receive love. It is important for me to know that I have people in my life who care and want to be there for me. This book has shown me to always try and help my friends, family, or even strangers just because I want to not for any selfish reasons.

I believe I will always try and remember these commandments when I am teaching. I think that I will put them up in my classroom as encouragement for my students as well as myself. I can use some of the commandments, as classroom rules to help my students better understand what I am looking for. Dr. Kent M. Keith is a great man with a great mind. I think that I will try my best to follow these commandments just because they are cool, very realistic, right to the point, easy to read, and easy to understand. I really liked the book and I will buy the hard copy to keep in my library at home and in my classroom. ... Read more

184. Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind
by Shunryu Suzuki-Roshi
list price: $16.95
our price: $16.95
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Asin: 0944993079
Catlog: Book (1988-08-01)
Publisher: Audio Literature
Sales Rank: 499398
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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A respected Zen master in Japan and founder of the San Francisco Zen Center, Shunryu Suzuki has blazed a path in American Buddhism like few others. He is the master who climbs down from the pages of the koan books and answers your questions face to face. If not face to face, you can at least find the answers as recorded in Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, a transcription of juicy excerpts from his lectures. From diverse topics such as transience of the world, sudden enlightenment, and the nuts and bolts of meditation, Suzuki always returns to the idea of beginner's mind, a recognition that our original nature is our true nature. With beginner's mind, we dedicate ourselves to sincere practice, without the thought of gaining anything special. Day to day life becomes our Zen training, and we discover that "to study Buddhism is to study ourselves." And to know our true selves is to be enlightened. --Brian Bruya ... Read more

Reviews (104)

4-0 out of 5 stars One of the two or three best meditation guides available.
This book, based upon a series of lectures, was not intended as a meditation guide by Suzuki-roshi...and perhaps that is why it is such a good meditation guide. I will not quibble with a recent reviewer who said that this is not necessarily the best book for those who are just encountering Zen--although I do quibble with that reviewer giving this only one star, partly based on the subjective observation that it isn't "fun" enough--as I can easily see how it can be a little befuddling for newcomers...but if you are interested in Buddhism, and have studied it a little, this is a great book for beginning your meditation practice.

Like the aforementioned reviewer, I am sometimes bemused with the air of excessive solemnity and reverence of many books on Zen, Buddhism, and meditation--especially the way this air isreflected by their "fans," followers, and reviewers-- but I, personally, do not find such an air in this book. I find Suzuki-roshi's style to be very straightforward, accessible, and warmly human, and this book is a quick and easy read from which you will get something new at each point along your path that you return to it. If you are interested in starting a meditation practice--and please don't concern yourself too much with what "school" of Buddhism to follow: imo too much discussion about this "school" or that, only serves to obscure a subject that's supposed to be about clarity--I suggest that you read this book; Mindfulness in Plain English by Ven. Henepola Gunaratana; and Peace is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh, first. There is nothing unique or revelatory about my choices for recommendations, but I have been meditating for more than eight years, I have read a lot of books on the subject, and these are my favorites by far; for their clarity, brevity, conciseness, and accessibility to westerners. Namaste.

5-0 out of 5 stars Unique Modern Zen Literature
"The points we emphasize are not the stage we attain, but the strong confidence we have in our original nature and the sincerity of our practice" Reading over 20 books on Zen I can confidently write that Beginners Mind is unique among modern Zen literature in that it gives the reader the "sense of Zen". Unlike other books by D.T. Suzuki or Alan Watts, both of which are very profound writers that write in a more intellectual and formal manner Shunryu is more humane. This is not the best book to start with, a better first step could be Alan Watts "The way of Zen" or D.T. Suzuki's "An Introduction to Zen Buddhism" but after a basic understanding of Zen is acquired this book will uniquely supplement it.

5-0 out of 5 stars The One Book You Need On Zen
I have purchased this book repeatedly since I keep giving away copies. Perhaps I should buy it in bulk! If you want the basics of zen - of meditation - Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind is it. You need not clutter your bookshelves and life with other tomes. Page after page of priceless jewels fill the pages of the book from the talks of Suzuki - "You become discouraged with your practice when your practice has been idealistic." - haven't we all been there in life? And of course, that one piece of advice that defines zazen completely: "When you sit, you should just sit..." Ah my painful legs, dripping faucet, wandering, zen, beginner's mind...

5-0 out of 5 stars My impression 15 years ago...
I read this book when I was in my mid-teens.
I have been exploring "spirituality", mysticism, meditation, and various spiritual traditions, perspectives, and practices for much of my life. All this time later, this book is one that stands out in my memory.

I only read it that once. I have not read it since. I was going to flick through it before giving this review, as some of the other reviews raised passing doubt in my mind --- perhaps my memory of this book is tainted, I thought.

Yet, I feel that what is of value in my review is the actual impact the book had on me at the time that I read it. So that is what I am going to briefly share.

The lasting impression that I have from this book is that it gave me a very clear, simple, and direct approach to understanding meditation. It also played a key part in inspiring me to pursue meditation at that relatively early age.

Reading this book gave me the lasting impression that a key to my path inward is to maintain an open, clear, and beginner-like mind (a mind that has no expectations because a beginner has no history of experience form which to create such expectations). In some way that I can not really put my finger on (I'd have to perhaps reread it to do that) this book changed my appreciation of life and reminded me of something key to my awakening and my spiritual journey.

(I've just taken a peek at one page in the book)... And I am instantly reminded that the other aspect of how this book impressed me was not only by giving me some valuable keys to how to approach meditation but also how to approach life and living. To qualify that, I will add that when I say "how" I mean "HOW to live life and HOW to approach meditation, in a way that is wholesome and conducive to attaining inner peace.

I can see from some of the reviews I have read that, in my experience, some people have approached this book from a perspective of how well it portrays various Buddhist traditions, or elements of certain Buddhist teachings and paths etc. For me, in 15 years of hindsight, that all seems completely irrelevant. That value of this book could easily get lost if I bring a whole lot of religious knowledge to it and don't receive the simple yet beautiful message hidden within it's pages and hidden within the man that wrote it. Even now when I see the author's photo I feel a deep sense of love and respect for him... all as a result of the impact this reading this book (and applying it to my life) had on me when I was around 15 or so years of age.

I don't expect this book should be approached as some great Zen or Buddhist text. There are now plenty of these available so look elsewhere if that's what you want. I recall a simplicity about this book that moved and touched something deep within my spirit. Obviously this book has left a lasting impression... I read it at a time when the internet as we know it didn't even exist... yet here I am all those years later writing for you this review !!

With love,

Jonathan Evatt

PS. I will add that since reading this book I have awoken to and remembered a great deal with regards to the journey to Liberation and Inner Peace. Hence I will share that this book explores a small piece of the big picture... yet I recall that it does so in such a way that it's exploration of that small (but important) piece is of great value.

1-0 out of 5 stars Popular,insome circles,but useless to those new to Zen
Being more than a little fond of The Great Matter I've looked thru this book on many occasions and never found anything to warrant close examination. I am amazed at the high praise it receives, in these reviews, and I can appreciate some of what the naysayers have to say, Sutra study (Mahayana or Theravada)isn't part of the picture here. I wouldn't recommend the Sutras for those new to Zen, but I would expect that what's presented in a book on Zen would have its roots, in some fashion or other, in the Mahayana, whether zazen is emphasized or not. Consequently, I would recommend THE WAY OF ZEN, by Alan Watts, which is a lot more informative and, more importantly, a lot more fun! Yes, I said the F word and if you've read all the reviews, as I have, you will notice that they are rather serious and that alone should make one wonder. (The Watts book is always available 'used' and can also be found in most libraries.) Take Care. ... Read more

185. Sex and the City
by Candace Bushnell
list price: $24.98
our price: $16.49
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1586210300
Catlog: Book (2000-10)
Publisher: Time Warner Audiobooks
Sales Rank: 311315
Average Customer Review: 2.88 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Here's the collection of columns that inspired the addictive and multiple award-winning HBO series! SEX AND THE CITY offers a tantalizing glimpse of the openings, launch parties, and celebrity affairs that keep society amused. Throughout, a cast of characters-the troubled writer, the successful businessman, the famous underwear model, and others-searches for true love...or at least someone to go home with at the end of the night. It's a chronicle of the true-life adventures of the "in" crowd that is often hilarious and sometimes terrifying, but always mesmerizing. ... Read more

Reviews (128)

5-0 out of 5 stars This is Manhattan
I highly reccomend reading SEX AND THE CITY written by Candace Bushnell. It's smart, intelligent, sexy, funny, unapologetic, facinating, all this and more. The book takes a look at life in Manhattan. I found it very amusing to read, from the menage a trois to the bicycle boys. There is much irony such as the four city woman going to visit the married women in Conneticut for a baby shower. The book follows many characters, and their relationships throughout the course of this book. The main character being Carrie, and following her tumultuous relationship with Mr. Big. She wonders if she will ever get married, have children. The book analyzes the different aspects of life for a woman in Manhattan. The characters are outrageous and it's very to get into their world through reading this. A good book about relationships between people. If you enjoy the HBO series you are sure to like this, it's even more explicit than the series is! Overall a good read, highly reccomended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good, but not expect too much
Well, most of the people who will read this book will do so because of the great success of the HBO's series. But try not to expect too much. It was a good starting point for the TV show, but sometimes it is dissappointing in some details. In my opinion, the TV show is better. But hey, go ahead and read it! It is not bad at all. It surely shows some aspects of single-life here in New York, and the shallow characters are so easy to find in real life! I can say that, because I am currently living in Manhattan and I have seen similar weird situations depicted in this book. If you want some summer fun, pick up this book. I finished it in just 4 days...

1-0 out of 5 stars THERE IS SOMETHING BETTER!
Look. Seriously, now. If you like the show or the book even a little bit, you realllllly need to investigate books by Cynthia Heimel. Heimel was the original and she remains the best. She's smarter and funnier and a thousand times more interesting than Candace Bushnell or Carrie Bradshaw. Heimel is a little grittier than SATC. She's weak for shoes and designer clothes but she lives strictly in the real world. Please, please PLEASE read "Sex Tip For Girls" or "But Enough About You" or "If You Can't Live Without Me, Why Aren't You Dead Yet" if you want to see what Candace Bushnell is DESPERATELY TRYING to do! Try Heimel once. You'll never read Bushnell again. You're welcome!

1-0 out of 5 stars Edith Wharton with a martini my (...)
Bushnell has been hyped as "Edith Wharton with a Martini". If anyone actually believes this, then I am horrified at how low American literature has sunk. She's not even Jacqueline Suzann or Jackie Collins. These little vignettes are superficial, dull, and neither particularly intelligent nor particularly witty. Other reviewers are correct when they point out that the series was much smarter and funnier (at least, the first three seasons, anyway). It amazes me that this crap ever got published, and now Bushnell fancies herself a clever writer, so she has begun foisting other bombs on us as well (Trading Up and Four Blondes, both as dull and unimaginative as Sex and the City). She is an amateurish writer with painfully sophomoric "insights" who has benefitted from the hype of a great show based very loosely on her column (and I mean VERY loosely). As someone who lives in NYC, I can tell you that the people Bushnell reveres as the power players and "in" crowd are the (...) of many a joke in other social circles. Not everyone in this city worships superficiality and eternal adolescence. Don't waste your money!!

1-0 out of 5 stars I paid money for this?
Being an avid fan of the series, I decided I had to have the book. What a disappointment. The characters are not even remotely similar to the series and all the witty reparatee is nowhere to be found. When I felt as though I couldn't read another word, I would think to myself, "go on, turn the page, you paid for this's got to get better." It didn't and I took it in the short$$$. This was by far the worst book I've ever bought. ... Read more

186. The Feynman Lectures on Physics: The Complete Audio Collection, Volume 16
by Richard P. Feynman
list price: $40.00
our price: $40.00
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Asin: 0738206970
Catlog: Book (2002-06-15)
Publisher: California Institute of Technology
Sales Rank: 544776
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187. Funky Phonics.... and More: Reading Readiness, Vol. 1
by Sara Jordan
list price: $14.95
our price: $12.71
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1895523087
Catlog: Book (1992-08-01)
Publisher: Sara Jordan Publishing
Sales Rank: 374802
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

A great introduction to Reading! Uses both phonics and whole language approaches. Learn about the alphabet, vowels, consonants (C and G), telling time, days of the week, seasons, the environment and more...

Age: SK - Grade 3 ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars What a great and memorable song collection for kids!
I am a second grade teacher and I have to say that "Funky Phonics and more, vol. 1" really livens up my classroom, every year!

Favorite tunes include "The Vowel Song", "The Animal Song", "Telling Time" and "Androide".

I would say that "Funky Phonics" is really a Reading Readiness kit which also introduces phonics through song. Lots of the songs are action packed.

For example, when we are singing "The Vowel Song", I make giant flash cards for the kids and each child gets a chance to be one of the vowels. Then as we are singing about each vowel, the child proudly gets a chance to pop up and show off his letter.

"The Animal Song" is great. It's much more that an alphabet song. It introduces a new animal for every single letter of the alphabet and teaches an interesting fact about each of the animals too!

"Telling Time" is wonderful because not only does it each kids how to tell time, it reviews skip counting in 5's because after all, this is often the way we tell, 10:10 or 10:15.

"The Androide Song" is an interesting approach to telling time. The kids love to hear the Androide sing about time and his daily race through the fast lane of life.

Of course, other interesting songs, such as "Days of the Week", which teaches how the days were named after the planets, and "Who's Going to Save Us Now?" a great environmental tune, really spice up other curriculum units.

Whether for home use or in the classroom, I hope you'll be as excited and pleased with "Funky Phonics and more Vol. 1" as I am. ... Read more

188. The Dancing Wu Li Masters : An Overview of the New Physics
list price: $15.95
our price: $10.85
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1559270586
Catlog: Book (1990-05-15)
Publisher: Audio Renaissance
Sales Rank: 159234
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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At an Esalen Institute meeting in 1976, tai chi master Al Huang said that the Chinese word for physics is Wu Li, "patterns of organic energy." Journalist Gary Zukav and the others present developed the idea of physics as the dance of the Wu Li Masters--the teachers of physical essence. Zukav explains the concept further:

The Wu Li Master dances with his student. The Wu Li Master does not teach, but the student learns. The Wu Li Master always begins at the center, the heart of the matter.... This book deals not with knowledge, which is always past tense anyway, but with imagination, which is physics come alive, which is Wu Li.... Most people believe that physicists are explaining the world. Some physicists even believe that, but the Wu Li Masters know that they are only dancing with it.

The "new physics" of Zukav's 1979 book comprises quantum theory, particle physics, and relativity. Even as these theories age they haven't percolated all that far into the collective consciousness; they're too far removed from mundane human experience not to need introduction. The Dancing Wu Li Masters remains an engaging, accessible way to meet the most profound and mind-altering insights of 20th-century science. --Mary Ellen Curtin ... Read more

Reviews (94)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Dancing Wu Li Masters...
Exposing and illustrating the synchronicities between Eastern mysticism and physics is common; Zukav does a fabulous job with this book.

3-0 out of 5 stars Certain Considerations
First let me start by saying that I, as a layman, enjoyed this book intensely. I don't have a degree in Physics by any stretch of the imagination, rather I have a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies, which is a nice way of saying I have a little bit of knowledge about everything.

I was given this book as a gift by a friend of mine who is deep into "New Age" writing. I was told that Zukav's writing style is dry, and though I can't confirm or deny that statement, I haven't read any of his other work, I found this book to be witty and engaging. I'll agree with certain other reviewers in saying that his attempts to unite certain Eastern philosophies with modern Quantum Mechanics seem somewhat contrived and at times bewildering. The world he describes is truly pure enchantment, but based on his credentials I now wonder if its his fantasy about Quantum Physics or a factual description of Quantum phenomena.

In the end, the major thing this book accomplished is whetting my appetite. Due to the exquisite writing and poetic descriptions in this book, I've chosen to look into Quantum Mechanics more closely with books by actual Quantum Physicist. I'm steadily considering continuing my education in the field, perhaps choosing a career in it if it continues to fascinate.

5-0 out of 5 stars A really good physics book without equations.
Taking a subject like Quantum Mechanics and explaining what it is all about is a difficult task. The author has achieved that difficult task without the use of equations and symbols. When I first started reading the book my initial impression was that it was going to be a whole bunch of philosophical mumbo jumbo. By the time I finished reading it (it took me a couple of months), I was very much impressed with Gary Zukav's ability to cover all the major aspects of quantum mechanics and in covering the contributions of the physicists behind quantum theory in an easy to understand language without having to resort to equations and symbols. My only gripe about the book is that every chapter is numbered as chapter 1 in order to make some point about Chinese philosophers. Many people are used to keeping track of which chapter they have read or are reading by remembering chapter numbers. But using a bookmark solved that problem for me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Aquantum joyride!
I did not have the problems that the last two or three reviewers had. The part of the book that mentions the Dancing Wu Lei Masters was an analogy. I happen to like analogies and I understood completely why he used it.I also have a very open mind. Think of everything in this book as a theory, as a possiblity, as a chance and an excuse to stretch your imagination. The author, in my opinion has a way with words and breadth of vision which to my mind is a formula for some pretty exiciting writing. He is able to make associations that actually make sense (to me anyway).I found his descriptions easy to understand and I had no trouble with the prose. You know I wish I could read a physics book and learn about physics but then there's the math thing...and is it me or are those books incredibly dry?To all the scientist that read these reviews...of course this book isn't going to appeal to know the math!! Some of us aren't blessed with that ability or the inclination. I am grateful to the writer of this book. I found it riveting, enjoyable and incredibly facinating.The analogies made it fun and everyone knows the best teachers make their subject enjoyable and interesting. This author has definately done that for me. If you have trouble with abstract concepts and/or are offended by the integration of science and philosophy you may not want to waste your money and perhaps go to a college bookstore instead.

1-0 out of 5 stars Dissenting Opinion
This book is a reminder of why non-physicists ought not to be in the business of explaining physics.It might be easier to use physics to illuminate the Tao than Taoism to find physics.In this context, modern physics is a specific description of all that is.The Tao, on the other hand, is a generality which may be affirmed or denied by the specific but which does not encompass the level of detail needed to arrive at the specific.This is why Gary Zukav so often loses his way. (Pardon the pun.)He suffers from the standard American aversion for even the simplest mathematics.As a result his description of the macro world, in which the interactions of forces and particles appear deterministic, are sometimes awkward and always inelegant.Once we enter the quantum world of Einstein's dice throwing God, Zukav loses the distinction between physics and metaphysics.The world is neither the predetermined clockwork envisioned by Descartes and his friends nor a collection of anthropomorphic particles dancing to the Wu Li Waltz.Unlike Gary Zukav and his intended readership, I am quite comfortable with a universe that cannot be explained without random variables.The Dancing Wu Li Masters might be satisfactory for those who need a spoonful of philosophy to make the physics go down were it not that the physics being swallowed is wrong. ... Read more

by Richard Preston
list price: $17.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671506986
Catlog: Book (1994-10-01)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Sales Rank: 346278
Average Customer Review: 4.37 out of 5 stars
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The dramatic and chilling story of an Ebola virus outbreak in a surburban Washington, D.C. laboratory, with descriptions of frightening historical epidemics of rare and lethal viruses. More hair-raising than anything Hollywood could think of, because it's all true. ... Read more

Reviews (372)

5-0 out of 5 stars A great account of close calls and tense trials with viruses
I think that Richard Preston deserves all five stars for this thrilling book on real life experiences with deadly Ebola Viruses. He took an accumulation of true stories and turned it into an interesting and spellbinding book that hardly seems true. This book is easy to follow, even though the whole is scientific. Preston balanced the scientific language and factuality with an interesting plot and rounded characters as in a fictional book. Preston went into painstaking details to turn the Reston operation and other experiments into lament terms that all readers might comprehend. His magnificent writing style also came through in his account of nurse Mayinga's journey through the city and how catastrophic the event actually might have been. I really enjoyed the amount of effort Preston put forth in describing what Ebola and Marburg actually do to the body, prior to and during death. Although the book was very good, I do think that Richard Preston might have left out the entire fourth part. It had no real influence on the situation at Kitum Cave or what the reader thought of Africa. With all things considered, I strongly advise this book be read by everyone and I will certainly recommend this book to everybody I know.

5-0 out of 5 stars Entering the "Hot Zone"
It starts with a simple headache. Then maybe you get a nosebleed. After a few days, you know you are extremely sick. The lining of your stomach and the top layer of your tongue literally fall off. Your organs turn into mush. Excessive bleeding from every natural opening in your body occurs. And since your blood can't clot, the bleeding won't stop. Black vomit mixed with blood gushes from your mouth. Then, you die painfully with a mask-like expression on your face.

This doesn't even sound like it could exist, does it? Well it does. It is death by a virus known as Ebola. It is especially contagious in monkeys and can jump species over to humans.

The Hot Zone, by Richard Preston, describes outbreaks of this and other "hot" viruses in locations around the world, including a city near Washington, D.C. Virus experts in the Army need to unravel the Ebola mystery and try to protect the public from this vicious disease.

Preston has taken a true story and unveiled its horror. I couldn't believe how descriptive his writing is. If you want to read a true modern day thriller, then this is an awesome pick. I highly recommend it and am looking forward to reading more from Richard Preston.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Read!
After months of stuffy old British classics we read THE HOT ZONE by Richard Preston in my sophomore English class. What a breath of fresh air! The book reads like a novel, but is full of fascinating information about ebola. Whether you're a biology buff or just want a good beach read, this is a great book. I highly recommend this(...)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good
This book happened to be my Physics book to read and i thought it would just be some people trying to track down this deadly virus. I thought it would all be fiction and i'd wright a report and get a good grade. Turns out, this book is fiction, one of the scariest books i've read, and one of the few books that at parts i couldn't put down!

Some parts didn't appeal to me as much as others (Thats why i give it a 4). I really liked the book and will encourage people to read it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Cant put this down; master thriller story
This is one of the most exciting books you will ever read. And the scary thing is that the story is true. This page-turner will grip you from the onset and leave you will a chill down yor spine when you realize the nature of the world of virology.

Preston makes the story flow well from beginning to end. He makes feel like you are right in the middle of the story .. almost like you have a role to play. It wont take you long to read this book, and it is written in a comfortable style.

Anyone with an interest in viruses, microbiology, public health, or who just want a good reality thriller should read this book. You will not be disappointed! ... Read more

190. Agency & Partnership (Law School Legends Series)
by Thomas L. Evans
list price: $45.95
our price: $45.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0159003512
Catlog: Book (1997-03-01)
Publisher: Harcourt Brace Legal and Professional Publica
Sales Rank: 725517
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Book Description

We found the truly gifted law professors most law students can only dream about – the professors who draw rave reviews, not only for their scholarship, but for their ability to make the law easy to understand.We asked these select few professors to condense their courses into a single lecture.And it’s these lectures you’ll find in the Law School Legends Series.With Law School Legends, you’ll get a brilliant law professor explaining an entire subject to you in one simple, dynamic lecture.The Law School Legends make even the most difficult concepts crystal clear.You’ll understand the big picture, and how all the concepts fit together.You’ll get hundred of examples and exam tips, honed over decades in the classroom.But best of all, you’ll get insights you can only get from America’s greatest law professors! ... Read more

191. Tomorrow's God : Our Greatest Spiritual Challenge
list price: $26.00
our price: $17.68
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0743530012
Catlog: Book (2004-03-01)
Publisher: Sound Ideas
Sales Rank: 481861
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

All great truths begin as blasphemy.

The time to challenge your most sacred beliefs is at hand.

If you don't challenge your beliefs soon, your beliefs are going to challenge you.

This audiobook is meant to be challenging.

This audiobook is meant to save the world.

Something extraordinary is about to happen on this planet.

This audiobook contains an astonishing prediction. And that prediction comes from an astonishing source. Author Neale Donald Walsch says it comes directly from God. You will find it difficult not to be swept up in the startling and profound vision of our near future contained here.

Tomorrow's God says, point blank, that humanity will soon recreate its experience of God in such a way that our experience of one another will be healed at last. You may agree or disagree with the contents of this audiobook, but you will never forget it.

An abridgement of Tomorrow's God.
© 2004 Millenium Legacies, Inc. All rights reserved.
... Read more

Reviews (38)

5-0 out of 5 stars Imagine you are the creator.
No matter whether we agree with Mr. Walsh's books, or not, it is a certainty that is is us who have created the environment in which some of us now live exceedingly well, and others NOT. As long as we blame circumstance or other forces, we are relegated to continuing on the path on which we are now.Only by understanding ourselves as the makers of the world we live in can we hope to create a world of community and relatedness. Among others, Neile Donald Walsh shows the way to the kind of thinking, believing, understanding and feeling that will allow us to choose to take the actions that will get us where we say we want to go.
I recommend each and everyone of his books. You can make no better choice!

5-0 out of 5 stars Best CWG book ever!
This is a wonderful book - the best CWG book ever and I learned a lot from it !! - but here's some info. from Walsch (the author) for you to consider:

"The so-called End Times movement is gaining huge momentum in the world. The Left Behind books are among the best-selling books in the world, with Christians gobbling them up by the millions.

In the meantime, a concerted effort by conservative fundamentalists has apparently begun to drive down the reader approval rating of What God Wants on and other Internet bookselling sites.

As you know, these sites post reviews by readers, who then give the book anywhere from one to five stars. Apparently alarmed that What God Wants was getting way too many four and five-star ratings, the fundamentalists have hit the Internet bookstore sites to write extremely negative reviews of this text to drive down the average Reader Review Rating.

I knew the book would be savagely attacked, but I never thought of this particular angle. Wouldn't it be nice if all the book's friends went to,, etc., to contribute a positive review?

Hmmmm. Do you suppose we can rally some people energy on the other side of the God-is-Angry doomsday equation?"

5-0 out of 5 stars The Shape of Future Spirituality and Religion
I read Neale Donald Walsch's Tomorrow's God with amazement. It develops the ideas in the Conversations With God series, but applies them to our understanding of God and how that will evolve in the next generation of human thinking. How will humankind conceive of God as our species evolve, and as religions grapple with the entirely new problems of the coming century. Tomorrow's God provides intriguing answers. The book also presents many practical ideas, including a meditation, the "blue flame" meditation, that I have been using, that while very simple, has a powerful effect. This book is essential reading for anyone who has been touched by the power, eloquence and simplicity of the Conversations With God series.

3-0 out of 5 stars Some kind of repetition
Well good book, but CWG3 is somehow more excited to read. I think that this book is suitable if you are really CWG freak :o)

5-0 out of 5 stars You Have All The Answers
"You have all the answers to every question you could ever ask."When I ask and answer my own questions, I find the answers that satisfy me the most. ... Read more

192. Italian New Testament
list price: $39.97
our price: $26.38
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 7902033014
Catlog: Book (1994-03)
Publisher: Christian Duplications International
Sales Rank: 550538
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193. Life on the Other Side: A Psychic's Tour of the Afterlife
by Sylvia Browne
list price: $18.95
our price: $12.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1565113748
Catlog: Book (2000-08-01)
Publisher: Highbridge Audio
Sales Rank: 432700
Average Customer Review: 4.29 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In her phenomenal New York Times bestseller The Other Side and Back, acclaimed psychic Sylvia Browne introduced millions of people to a world beyond our own, where they saw for the first time that death was the end but just another phase in our eternal journey. Now, with Life on the Other Side, she goes even further, attending to our most pressing questions and quelling our deepest fears about death. Like a "psychic travel agent," Sylvia answers our five basic questions: "How do I get there?"; "What does it look like?"; "What are the 'local' like?; "What is there to do?"; and "How exactly do I get back?" She also looks over lifelong career as a psychic, using past experiences, readings, hypnosis sessions, and research to illustrate her findings about "the other side." Now, for the very first time, we're led on an adventure of the spirit to see an unprecedented view of a peaceful place where our departed loved one--and the next leg of our exciting journey--are patiently awaiting us.

"I've personally witnessed her bring closure to distraught families, help police close cases, and open people's hearts to help them see the good within themselves." --Montel Williams

"The The Other Side and Back is the most grounded and authentic 'entry to the other' I have ever read. Browne is a master at conveying the truth that exists in the fourth dimension." --Carolyn Myss, Ph.D., author of Anatomy of the Spirit
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Reviews (119)

4-0 out of 5 stars Life On The Other Side: A Psychics Tour Of The Afterlife
WOW!!!!! I can't say enough good things about this book. I've read some good books in the past, but none that explained some of the things that have happened to me. I read the entire book in 1 day. I just couldn't put it down. Next time you need a book, buy THIS ONE!! I already know of three or four people whom I will pass my copy along to. I think it will help them as much as it helped me. I just can't say enough good things. There's not enough space to say all that's on my mind. Ignore the bad reviews. I think Sylvia knows what she's talking about.

5-0 out of 5 stars Take what you want
I have read Sylvia's book and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It makes me feel much better to know that there is life after this one. TO the person who was upset with how Sylvia described Heaven, I think honestly that Heaven truly is whatever we can dream it to be. Something wonderful and beautiful. We can only create such a perfect place in our minds. It is up to each and every one of us to create our idea of Heaven. It gives us something to look forword to. Sylvia does a great job at making people feel ok about themselves and that we are given a chance to become better people. After reading her work I WANT to go and do something for someone who is less fortunate. This book taught me to appreciate life and go out and do great things. I am not a Church-goer. I have struggled with organized religion for so long. I never fit in anywhere. I was tired of hearing about an angry God. I got lost in the sermons all of the time. Sylvia has a great way of getting a point across and she is very funny. I was fortunate enough to attend a lecture of hers and I walked out of there feeling lighter than air. I feel very comfortable where I am in life. I maynot attend Church but I respect the people who do. Everyone of us, whether we go to Church or not, has the same goal. To love God and do our best in this life. Sylvia is great. Her books made a huge impact on my life. Read it and take what you want from it. We will interpet things differently and that is what makes us special.

5-0 out of 5 stars window through time
This book is a window into the realm beyond our earthy plain. it is one of the best. This book makes a perfect gift for those in need of spiritual comfort and those looking for answers to the many (why's) in life.

4-0 out of 5 stars take it or leave it
sounds like the reader from England is showing off too much. Stop parading your knowledge, even if the Camillus reader keeps changing the questions. Sylvia Browne is a top psychic and writer. She has nothing to prove and everything she says can be believed or not believed. It makes no difference to her. Follow your own heart and the answers will be found. God teaches us in His own way.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good questions asked by the reader from Syracuse / Camillus
... and love is the answer.

In this book, Brown explains the perfection of God's divine plan, and shows how our lives on earth fit in with the scheme of the bigger picture. Browne shows that love is the nature of our Source, and love is the purpose of our lives.

The questions asked by the reader below show that he/she has yet to appreciate the nature of love, and misunderstands the meaning of "perfection" from within the context of the bigger picture. Just because negativity exists, doesn't mean that God's Creation is imperfect or flawed. On the contrary. God knows that by allowing His children to freely walk their own path, and experience negativity, we can develop further in soul-stature and strength, and grow into maturity and soul-perfection of a more substantial and deeper nature than if we never experienced pain or tribulation at all.

Love always has the beloved's highest good in mind. Only by experiencing darkness, are we able to FULLY appreciate and cherish the fruits and goodness of the Light of the Other Side. Even though there are risks and vulnerabilities involved in love, (which can be understood even from the human level of self-giving love), Browne shows that God's love is eternal, and that the ULTIMATE outcome of God's plan is assured. Love will prevail, and all our woes and pains will be redeemed forever, transformed into strength, wisdom and spiritual empowerment.

God allows His children to walk their own path, because that's what love does. The dark side, and also physical realms such as earth, are all part and parcel of God's Creation - the overall purpose of which is perfect, flawless, all-wise and beneficent. As the philosopher said in Ecclesiastes, "There is a season and a time for every purpose under Heaven." All our tribulations and adventures add more to our soul's perfection and spiritual-fibre than if we didn't experience them at all. (This is basic soul-logic, commonly known as "wisdom".)

The principle that God knows the future doesn't undermine the concept of free will. The key to understanding lies in distinguishing the difference between our perspective and God's. From our perspective we are free, and are in the position to sow, create and do whatever we choose. Here we find freedom in life. Yet from God's perspective, what we're about to choose, create and do is already known by God - even before we do it. (This shouldn't surprise us, because God is omniscient, and possesses infallible knowledge of everything.)

The reader below asked some very good and intelligent questions.

As always, love is the answer. ... Read more

194. The Map That Changed the World: William Smith and the Birth of Modern Geology [UNABRIDGED]
by Simon Winchester
list price: $34.95
our price: $23.07
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0694522716
Catlog: Book (2001-08-01)
Publisher: HarperAudio
Sales Rank: 78817
Average Customer Review: 3.58 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

From the author of the bestselling The Professor and the Madman comes the fascinating story of the father of modern geology

In 1793, William Smith, the orphan son of a village blacksmith, made a startling discovery that was to turn the science of geology on its head. While surveying the route for a canal near Bath, he noticed that the fossils found in one layer of the rocks he was excavating were very different from those found in another. And out of that realization came an epiphany: that by following these fossils one could trace layers of rocks as they dipped, rose and fell -- clear across England and clear across the world.

Obsessed with creating a map that would showcase his discovery, Smith spent the next twenty years traveling England alone, studying rock outcroppings and gathering information. In 1815 he published a hand-painted map more than eight feet tall and six feet wide. But four years later, swindled out of his profits, Smith ended up in debtors' prison. His wife went mad. He lived as a homeless man for ten long years.

Eventually a kindly aristocrat discovered him; Smith, the quiet genius and 'father of geology' was brought back to London and showered with the honors that he rightly deserved. Here now is his astounding story.

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Reviews (76)

3-0 out of 5 stars A review of the book about the map that changed the world
Simon Winchester, the author of the deservedly best-selling *The Professor and the Madman*, writes in *The Map that Changed the World* about William Smith, who was dubbed in 1831--a bit belatedly--The Father of English Geology by the then president of the Geological Society of London. Smith's great work was an enormous--some 8 x 6 feet--geological map of England, the data for which Smith had spent a considerable part of his lifetime collecting single-handedly. The map, which delineates in splendid color the various strata of rock that underlie England, was the first of its kind. Smith himself was a maverick intellect for his understanding of both the implications of the strata for the history of the Earth and the importance to the rocks' identification of the fossils that could be collected from them.

Smith also had an interesting personal history in that his great efforts for science were so unremunerative that he landed for some eleven weeks at the age of fifty in one of London's great debtors' prisons. Winchester makes much of this great irony in his book, that a monumental figure should be so ill-treated and so long unrespected during his lifetime.

For all Smith's merits as a subject, however, Winchester's narrative is a bit of a slog. His emphasis is very often on the science of geology rather than the personality of Smith. This is reasonable enough given the subject matter of the book, but I, at least, frequently found the author's discussion difficult to follow. Winchester may, as a one-time student of geology at Oxford, have had too high an opinion of his layman readers' capacities. (Or I, of course, may not have been the proper audience for the book.) For those who are not geologically inclined, there may be more discussion of strata, however, than is palatable: "Below the 300 feet of chalk, Smith declaimed before the others, were first 70 feet of sand. Then 30 feet of clay. Then 30 more feet of clay and stone. And 15 feet of clay. Then 10 feet of the first of named rocks, forest marble. And 60 feet of freestone." And so on.

Winchester's narrative does become more interesting toward the book's end, when Smith has, finally, published his map and he is imprisoned for debt--the great dramatic moment toward which the book has been leading. But Smith's stay in the King's Bench Prison is itself anticlimactic, because while Winchester alludes to its "horrors" earlier on, he finally describes debtors' prison as a sort of country club, where the indebted middle-class pass their time playing cards or bowling and drinking beer. Trying and embittering it may have been to be locked away while his possessions were riffled through and sold off, but it was evidently not horrific.

Winchester's writing is at its most charming--and he does write charmingly--in the most personal section of the book, when he tells the story of his discovery at the age of six of an ammonite fossil. He and his fellow convent boys were led by the sisters of the Blessed Order of the Visitation on a miles-long walk to the sea, an expedition they undertook once a week. Winchester's account of the boys' riotous plunge into the sea shows just how nicely he can turn a phrase:

"Up here there always seemed to be a cool onshore breeze blowing up and over the summit. It was tangy with salt and seaweed, and the way it cooled the perspiration was so blessed a feeling that we would race downhill into it with wing-wide arms, and it would muss our hair and tear at our uniform caps, and we would fly down toward the beach and to the surging Channel waves that chewed back and forth across the pebbles and the sand.

"I seem to remember that by this point in the weekly expedition the dozen or so of us--all called by numbers, since the convent's peculiar regime forbade the use of names; I was simply 46--were well beyond caring what the nuns might think: The ocean was by now far too magnetic a temptation. Once in a while we might glance back at them as they stood, black and hooded like carrion crows, fingering their rosaries and muttering prayers or imprecations--but if they disapproved of us tearing off our gray uniforms and plunging headlong into the surf, so what? This was summer, here was the sea, and we were schoolboys--a combination of forces that even these storm troopers of the Blessed Visitation could not overwhelm."

Perhaps Winchester will one day expand on this passage with further autobiographical fare.

4-0 out of 5 stars Geologist's Dream - Readers Beware
"The Map That Changed the World: William Smith and the Birth of Modern Geology," by Simon Winchester, proved to be a bit of a disappointment. It's a wonderful book, and I'm sure for those who make their life in geology it's an excellent read, but for me it was a let down.

The problem may be that Winchester is too good a writer, or too accurate a biographer, to put down any details of which he's not 100% certain. Add to that the fact that the source materials focus on William Smith's professional work almost to the exclusion of any personal detail, and you have what should be a compelling personal journey that winds up reading more like a geology text in too many chapters.

Smith's place in history was assured by his 1815 publication of a map of England showing the geological strata and graphically demonstrating his theories that one could tell the age of the rocks from examining the fossils found within. This was radical stuff in 1815, and the work that led to this map took Smith some 30 years. Along the way he picked up a wife, who was possibly crazy, and adopted a nephew, who became his assistant, had business and financial troubles, which led to his being held in debtor's prison, and had a long running class-based feud with England's scientific establishment, which led to his works not being properly recognized for many years after their publication.

Unfortunately, only the last aspect of Smith's life is covered in any detail because that's all he wrote about in his own journal, or is covered in other source material. About the wife we're told that she was a burden to him, often sick, probably crazy, and possibly even a nymphomaniac. We're told all that, but we're never given examples, or are told how Smith felt about her. Did he love her anyway? Did they ever try to have children of their own? Did she embarrass him publicly? We don't know. About the nephew we're told that Smith took over his care when his sister and brother-in-law died, and that he became his assistant, but we're told nothing of their personal relationship. Was their's a close, familial relationship, or only one of master or mentor to apprentice? We don't know. And such is the frustration with the book (mine, at least).

What's left is endless descriptions of the various layers of the earth's crust, and how Smith could tell if an outcropping belonged to the Jurassic or Cretaceous periods.

I picked up this book because I loved Winchester's previous "The Professor and the Madman" so much. That's a book that's rich in personal detail, and is as important and fascinating in the descriptions of the lives of the subjects as it is in the descriptions of their professional works. "The Map that Changed the World" is likely stunning for students of geology, but may bore beyond belief the reader who doesn't care or know about item one of earth science.

So - In the end, I suppose a mixed review. If you get this joke (and think it's funny): "Subduction leads to orogeny" - or, if you have a bumper sticker that says "Stop Plate Tectonics" - Then this is a five star book that you will love every page of. If you don't even care to look up any of those words, then this is a three star book you should avoid. Which averages out to four stars: An occasionally fascinating and well-written book that is often dry and disappointing.

2-0 out of 5 stars Deadly dull
I'm sorry, but not even Simon Winchester's earnest enthusiasm and lyrical prose can save this tale. It's just too dull. I got through about halfway, and couldn't finish.

Winchester is a glorious writer in his twin histories of the Oxford English Dictionary. But here his subject is just too obscure and trivial, and try as he might, Winchester can't make it seem interesting.

2-0 out of 5 stars Fairly interesting story swamped by dreadful writing
It's a matter of taste, but I'm mystified by people who find Winchester's writing "charming." The author's cardinal rule seems to be: "When in doubt, slather on another thick coat of adjectives, adverbs, and clich├ęs." This kind of prose is too politely described as turgid, florid, and repetitive.
I wouldn't normally review a book after reading 1/4 of it, but I feel about this one the way I do after watching 20 minutes of a movie, and the direction, acting, and story are already tired and weak. It's usually a waste of time to stick it out on the off chance of an improvement.
Given that, I can't comment on whether the underlying story will come close to living up to its grandiose title, but I can say that I have a hard time trusting an author on the big picture once I've seen him get the details wrong in areas that I am intimately familiar with (e.g. coal mining in this case).
As several other readers suggested, John McPhee is an incomparably better writer and researcher, on geology or any other topic he cares to tackle.

1-0 out of 5 stars pass on this title
I had many hours of flying ahead of me and this was the wrong book to have taken. The fact that it was the only book I had gave me great incentive to like it. I didn't. I left it on the plane for someone more desperate than myself. ... Read more

195. Getting to Yes: How To Negotiate Agreement Without Giving In
by Roger Fisher, William Ury, Bruce Patton
list price: $29.95
our price: $19.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0743526910
Catlog: Book (2003-01-01)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Sales Rank: 414633
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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We're constantly negotiating in our lives, whether it's convincing the kids to do their homework or settling million-dollar lawsuits. For those who need help winning these battles, Roger Fisher has developed a simple and straightforward five-step system for how to behave in negotiations. Narrated soothingly by NPR announcer Bob Edwards, Fisher adds the meaty portions of the material with a sense of playfulness. The blend of voices makes this tape easy to listen to, especially the real-life negotiating scenarios, in which negotiating examples are given. This is a must-have tape for every businessperson's car. (Running time: one hour, one cassette) --Sharon Griggins ... Read more

Reviews (80)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good approach, but still has holes
I like this negotiation book because it emphasizes the win-win situation yet its system is flexible enough to deal with those who do not want to play that way.On the other hand, I am still intrigued by the use of standards.The authors propose that, in order to achieve some level of, shall we say "fairness," one should resort to the use of established standards that help both parties to gain a perspective.One example was about oil drilling rights in international waters.There was a disagreement that polarized relatively rich nations against relatively poor nations, and only after the discovery and use of an oil drilling economics model developed at MIT did the impasse begin to melt.However, what happens if the standard/model itself is developed with a biased opinion?One example might be the customs used in apartheid South Africa that were clearly biased towards whites.In summary, this book has important points (e.g. look at the interests behind the positions), but more work could be done to clarify the use of some principles.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great book on principle-centered negotiation
Getting to Yes is a book that focuses on negotiation techniques you can use to get a fair deal without sacrificing the relationship.

Fisher and Ury give some excellent advice for negotiation such as focusing on the problem and interests, not digging yourself into a position, how to handle overpowering and dirty negotiators, and work on problem solving by creating options.

I was mostly impressed by the author's description of how to maintain integrity without giving in.I was also impressed with the step-by-step scenario they had of the negotiation with the landlord that had charged over the rent control limit.

On the down side, I really wished there were more examples in this book.While there certainly were a few, I was left wanting more in order to understand the techniques given.Also I found some of the language to be dry, but this is not a huge issue.

Getting to Yes is definitely a book you want to read and we all have to negotiate at some point in our lives.4 out of 5 stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars I wish I had read this book ten years ago!
This book was recommended reading as part of a class in negotiation at NYU.I was a bit skeptical at first, as the cover made it look like the kind of popculture books they sell in grocery store check-out lines. I was quickly proven wrong.I just hope I will be able to apply the lessons learned therein. Up to know I have engaged mostly in what the authors call "positional bargaining." I now know the difference between this and "prinicipled negotiation," which will hopefully help me get over my Scorpio tendency of stinging anyone who disagrees with me!

5-0 out of 5 stars Introduction to the art of negotiation
From "Getting to Yes":

"Reading the pamphlet on the Royal Canadian Air Force exercises will not make you physically fit. Studying books on tennis, swimming, riding a bicycle, or riding a horse will not make you an expert. Negotiation is no different."

Wise words indeed. Anyone expecting a "how-to" method from any book on negotiation is in the wrong field of study. The best one can expect is a general framework, and that is what this book provides.

Fisher and Ury advocate what they refer to as "principled negotiation", a style of negotiation where there are no winners and losers. Agreements are reached rationally by considering the motives each party has for maintaining a their position. People are separated from the issues at hand, and emotions are controlled. There is a strong emphasis on rationality, using objective criteria.

Unfortunately, human beings aren't always capable of controlling their emotions and being rational. Or sometimes simply refuse to negotiate. Fisher and Ury recognize this, and provide a framework for tackling these issues, centered on what they call BATNA (Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement).

Overall a great book, but, as the authors themselves would concede, no substitution to negotiation experience.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great, Easy Intro into Negotiation
This book is a great overview of negotiation for the beginner or those interested in improving relationships in general. Advanced management types will most certainly get something from it as well.

The information is well-organized and the writing style is extremely accessible. The chapters build on each other logically and you'll get something from this book almost immediately.

Great to keep for reference, especially before big meetings. A solid addition to any manager's bookshelf. ... Read more

196. Practicing the Power of Now: Essential Teachings, Meditations, and Exercises from The Power of Now
by Eckhart Tolle
list price: $17.95
our price: $12.21
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1577312155
Catlog: Book (2002-01-09)
Publisher: New World Library
Sales Rank: 306084
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Eckhart Tolle has shown readers how to free themselves from "enslavement to the mind" and achieve an awakened state of consciousness throughout their lives. This CD contains the essence of Tolle's teachings, with meditations and straightforward techniques for quieting thoughts, seeing the world in the present moment, and finding a path to "a life of grace, ease, and lightness." ... Read more

Reviews (43)

5-0 out of 5 stars NOW is WOW!
Such a simple message, yet so profound and full of wisdom! I did not read Eckhart Tolle's first book on this subject because at the time of purchase, I preferred the Reader's Digest version of his message. I got it! It's written in a way that makes sense and is very satisfying.

This is what I learned: When faced with the illusion of a problem, you have the ability to chase that problem away by living in the Now. In other words, if you mentally take an issue out of the "problem" category, you will in essence take the problem's power away -- it is no longer a problem. This way of thinking, thinking in the NOW, has eleviated stress in my life. I can now look at my life with appreciation, moment by moment. It takes practice. When you do this, you are making a choice to seek positive solutions rather than hone in on that which is negative or out of your control.

In reading this little book of wisdom, I've found that the secret of life is your perception. Living in the Now, truly living in the now, is uplifting, satisfying, and the most powerful place to be.

5-0 out of 5 stars Which one to buy?
Since the content of Tolle's books has been covered well elsewhere, I'd like to address the person new to Tolle and wondering where to begin.

In my personal experience, if I could only afford to purchase one book, I'd start with PRACTICING THE POWER OF NOW. I feel that it essentially restates the material found in the original POWER OF NOW but in a format I found easier to digest. I don't see much point in owning both books (which I currently do.)

If you connect with PRACTICING and want more, then I'd recommend the audio book/retreat Realizing the Power of Now: An In-Depth Retreat With Eckhart Tolle. (It's less than $10 if you purchase the audio file from Audible.) I'm only half way through listening yet I constantly find myself thinking " I understand what he meant." It truly is an excellent supplement.

There is one more Tolle book here, STILLNESS SPEAKS. I borrowed this from the library. It's basically just out-takes from the other books, sort of a quotable quotes book that restates things in a nutshell. It would make a nice gift to a Tolle fan, but again, doesn't offer anything more than the other books. I suppose my message is: everything you need to know is in the original POWER OF NOW, stated perhaps more clearly in PRACTICING and excerpted in STILLNESS but supported well in audio format by the retreat CD.

I find Tolle's basic message very powerful, enlightening and simple. As he himself constantly repeats, he's not saying anything here now. But he explains it in a way which finally connects the dots for me. Unfortunately, this simple message seems to be getting constantly repackaged and I hope it doesn't turn into a "Chicken Soup for the Enlightened Soul" series. (I should probably go make sure that's not the title of an actual book! )

Curator, AfroAmericanHeritage dot com

5-0 out of 5 stars A fantastic contribution to humanity
I have studied many spiritual paths for over 30 years, and the wisdom Eckhart Tolle provides in Practicing the Power of Now is truly enlightening. I learned much from this book, and it is one of the few that I highly recommend. I learned much from the wisdom provided, and once applied, I felt a genuine release of the negativity that I used to feel. This is another rare contribution that I HIGHLY recommend, which is why I give it the five stars it deserves.

5-0 out of 5 stars Another way to think about repetition...
I see that some readers are concerned about repetition in the various publications and question whether economic motives are the driving force. I do not know Mr. Tolle and withhold judgment. However, through many years of experiential reading I recognize when books consist of far more than words. The wisdom of the author's higher consciousness is being directed through the printed media. It's there for the taking by all who will slow down and allow it in. Many will recognize that following an evolving workshop teacher over time allows the student to partake of the increasing wisdom carried and shared by the teacher. Although the logical premise in a series of writings may remain the same, later compositions might convey increasingly higher "energy hits". Looking at the "value added" component might be a consideration when deciding what to purchase. As with everything else, individuals should use their own discretion to get a feeling sense of what might be good for them. The rich energy behind the words in this volume sent me to deep places within myself. I suggest being fully present with each sentence, one at a time, in order to get the most out of the reading experience.

1-0 out of 5 stars Hippy-Dippy wisdom
"When you claim well documented prior spiritual thoughts to be your own it only diminishes your credibility. I wish Tolle provided appropriate references - such as the Upanishads, the Gita, the Kashmir Shaivism, the Dhammapada and the Vigyana Bhairava Tantra. Enlightenment means complete dissolution of the ego -not the refinement of it -- so when I see Tolle trying to pass this stuff as his own - it just takes away of his claim of being enlightened. Tolle regurgitates in verbally articulate manner spiritual gossip or as another reviewer put it a rather funny manner superficial "Hippy-Dippy wisdom". "

Ultimately there are many religions but spirituality is only one and the essence of it is documented in the Upanishads. ... Read more

197. Traveling Light Releasing The Burdens You Were Never Intended To Bear
by Max Lucado
list price: $18.99
our price: $12.91
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0849963265
Catlog: Book (2001-10-01)
Publisher: W Publishing Group
Sales Rank: 43313
Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Weary travelers. You've seen them-everything they own crammed into their luggage. Staggering through terminals and hotel lobbies with overstuffed suitcases, trunks, duffels, and backpacks. Backs ache. Feet burn. Eyelids droop. We've all seen people like that. At times, we are people like that-if not with our physical luggage, then at least with our spiritual load. We all lug loads we were never intended to carry. Fear. Worry. Discontent. No wonder we get so weary. We're worn out from carrying that excess baggage. Wouldn't it be nice to lose some of those bags? That's the invitation of Max Lucado. With the Twenty-third Psalm as our guide, let's release some of the burdens we were never intended to bear.

... Read more

Reviews (31)

5-0 out of 5 stars Walking Baggage Free
If you want to go to the next level in your Christian walk, Traveling Light is a must read. Max Lucado, incidently my favorite author, has beautifully illustrated through the 23rd Psalm how to rid ourselves of the baggage that weighs down our spiritual lives. Simply written, with easy-to-understand analogies, he gently guides us into truthful examination of ourselves and easy steps to rid ourselves of each piece of luggage. My favorite characteristic of Lucado's books is they are based on Scripture. Also, with the study guide at the back, they are an excellent tool for bible studies/discipleship groups. This book in particular would be excellent for a discipleship group. I guarantee that once you read Traveling Light, you will never ever look at the 23 Psalm the same again. Truly the Lord is our Shepherd and we are His sheep.

5-0 out of 5 stars You can't believe how blessed I was
This is the first Max Lucado book (well, book) I've ever read and no words in my venacular can praise his work enough. It has so inspired and blessed me!

Traveling Light is based on the old (and one of the most famous Psalms) Psalm (23) by David the King. Lucado guides the reader with such tenderness, light-heartedness (and I mean it... You won't believe how quirky and witty he can get *Grin*) and insight into the very heart of the Psalm and God, eventually.

I enjoy thoroughly the way Lucado writes about his personal encounters as well as draws experience from others (from his wife to Moses) to illustrate each topical aspect of the Psalm. And it really helps you to see the big picture about vital life lessons such as pride, want and fear.

Apart from that, each topic is supported by reading references and questions that challenge you to probe further until you get a satisfactory answer for yourself! His intuition to human needs is amazing: Lucado is able to ask questions which I have long wanted to ask, and gives answers in his writing.

It's a brilliant book. What more can you ask for if a Psalm barely filling up a third of a page in a typical Bible is turned into sort of a guidebook comprising 220 pages? Truly, God must be in this writing. And if Max ever gets to read this book review, I'd like to thank him... For his modest sharing :o)

4-0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed it very much
I enjoyed this book immensely. I will say it's not for everyone. The Book's message did hit me just right though, so it was good for me. Max has a very easy style and I've not found anything, so far, in his books that contradict what I have learned and read in my Biblical studies. What I find great about Max's books is the cross-over potential. If you are not a Christian, but looking for some guidelines or help, Max's books are just as insightful as other "self-help" books out there. Readers can take the anecdotes giving by Max and understand the core message.

Not for everyone, but if your head is heavy and you shoulders are drooping... Give this book a shot.

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful study on 23rd Psalm
Beautifully written, with humor and wonderful word pictures, the material in this book reached deep within to give me a better understanding of this well-known Psalm. I laughed, I cried, I thanked Max Lucado, and I thanked God for showing me the truth about the burdens I bear--and am not intended to bear! I can't wait to do the study at the end with my small group.

5-0 out of 5 stars a closer look at Psalm 23
Psalm 23 is probably one of the most familiar Bible passages, right up there with John 3:16. "The Lord is my shepherd..." Perhaps it is too familiar. Have we become so accustomed to hearing it that we have forgotten the wonderful promise it contains?

Traveling Light is a verse-by-verse exploration of Psalm 23, brought to life by comparing us to travelers weighed down with excess spiritual baggage. Each chapter identifies a different burden that we may be carrying in our life: flawed views of God, self-reliance, discontent, weariness, worry, hopelessness, guilt, arrogance, facing death, grief, fear, loneliness, shame, disappointment, envy, doubt and the longing for heaven.

This walk through the 23rd Psalm reminds and encourages us to take God at His word and release those burdens to Him. As usual, Lucado supports his material with plenty of scripture, sharp analogies and just the right amount of humor. For added impact, be sure to work through the study guide at the end of the book. Then get ready to lose some luggage.

Larry Hehn, author of Get the Prize: Nine Keys for a Life of Victory ... Read more

198. If It's Going to Be It's Up to Me
by Robert H. Schuller
list price: $18.00
our price: $18.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0694518530
Catlog: Book (1997-03-01)
Publisher: HarperAudio
Sales Rank: 708061
Average Customer Review: 4.88 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Reverend Robert Schuller is creator of television's "Hour of Power" ministry.

Read by Reverand Schuller on two cassettes.

... Read more

Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars California Dreamer!
I admit I'm a big fan of Dr. Schuller. His gift of communication is one that has enhanced the quality of my life on numerous occasions. Consider, for example, what he writes about growth, "Every new possiblity pursued with passion changes the hunter somehow, someway." In other words, the process of overcoming challenges changes us!

He views problems in a creative, healthy way. He writes, "In reality, every problem is only a decision waiting to be made." The principles he describes are inclusive, he notes "Every person has been created to be creative."

We're encouraged to celebrate our uniqueness. He advises, "Detect, discover, and take direction from your uniqueness." Prayer is viewed as a vital part of the process of achieving significant goals. As one prays and asks God for guidance, by faith it is received.

Dr. Schuller sees ideas as living things. He says "Every truly great idea has a life of its own." He goes to describe how a Renaissance thinker will cultivate worthwhile ideas of creativity.

This is another wonderful book by one of my favorite authors. His words will inspire and motivate you to do more and be more than you are now. It's a delightful, playful, productive process he's describing that leads to enriched living.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mind Rules!
Setting up goals in life is a step to optimistic accomplishment. If it's going to be me, its upto me to make the 'Decisions' firm and keep them final to achieve what we want. Realising own strengths with a positive 'I can do it' is in itself an initial step towards reaching heights. Robert Schuller's books are gems of inspirations and this one is just the 'Attitude' - shrugg off the black seeds of inferiority complexes and come out to accept the changes with vital energy and think positive. All his 'Better Yourself' serious is marvellous collections. It's the inner fire to flicker flame and positively pace ahead to be real 'Ownself', know the potentialities and think with mind rathar than use the heart. Rob's has a unique style of setting examples, adding the spiritual zest of bible stories but the main purpose stands for personal improvement and managing self to be better and best. Positive attitude pays dividends when you break free to grasp all that you dream. Whatever the faith be, Rob's book has the inspirational motivation to push forth the reader to smooth sail in life. Set goals, set priorities, think positive and achieve success with commitment to fulfil the desires - just decide upon today and think 'If it's going to be me, it's up to me and nothing can stop you from looking ahead as you leave those trails behind. That's a master piece 'Dr.Robert Schuller' - A spritual and Mind trainer, I would say! A good reading 'Hour of power' to read and self improve.

4-0 out of 5 stars Dr. Schuller is tremendous
Everybody has things that they consider problems and setbacks, at work and in life. Dr. Schuller's encounters and experiences shed perspective on us that many setbacks are bigger than our own but they can all be overcome. It just depends on YOU. After months of frustration at work, culminating in losing a promotion to a man with equal experience but less "tenure", I was getting very discouraged in general, and disappointed with other "self-improvement books" I was reading, to gain insight on what I am doing wrong, and how to fix it. Books like "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie get rave reviews, but in comparison to Schuller, Carnegie's work is miles off the mark. Unlike Carnegie and many others, everything Dr. Schuller explains is completely ethical and allows you to live your life with dignity. I have never been a real spiritual person, but Dr. Schuller is helping to change that. Using faith and spirituality as your guide seems to be much more effective and self-affirming than shameless groveling. In short, this book tells you how to set goals and keep them. How to take lemons and make lemonade. Great for its informational value as well as its entertainment value. Reading it may not exactly change your life, nor does it claim to, but it will definitely change whatever negative thinking you might have.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Book for Anyone!
This was the second book of Dr.Schullers that I had read. I came to his ministry in 1997. When I read this book, it changed my way of thinking and my faith in Christ and my belief about myself. This was one of the most powerfull books I have ever read. It greatly influenced me. In this book, Dr.Schuller talks about how to live succesfully as a christian through the 8 proven principals of possibility thinking that he has learned and lived through. It's a self help book through moativation by Jesus Christ. Anyone who knows Dr.Schuller and his ministry knows where he is coming from. Anyone who isnt famliar with him, I encourage you to pick up the book and read it. I also encourage young people to read this book. If I would have had this when I was younger, I would have been more determined and optimistic and stronger about myself. At least I have read it now. It's well worth buying. Thank God for Dr.Schuller!

5-0 out of 5 stars You have the power, what are you waiting for
As we all know, we have the power to rule ourselves. This being said, what are we waiting for? Maybe we are waiting for our rich uncle to die and leave us a million bucks. Well, keep dreaming, it probably won't happen. If it does happen, will we be any better at taking charge of our lives? Probably not!

Well the time is right to begin our long journey that lies ahead. This journey is the road that our lives follows.

As children, our paraents did everything for us, but as adults we seem to have a hard time making decisions about our lives. We seem to be waitning for some kind of push.

It's time we jump start our lives like this book suggests and try to make something happen in our lives. We need to learn how to motivate our selves to do bigger and better things.

I think this book can make a difference if we will read it and try to live by it. I STRONGLY RECOMMEND THIS BOOK ... Read more

199. Transforming the Difficult Child
by Howard Glasser
list price: $19.95
our price: $16.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0967050723
Catlog: Book (2001-04-15)
Publisher: Children's Success Foundation
Sales Rank: 225288
Average Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This is an 80-minute audiocassette recording of a presentation made by Howard Glasser to an audience of parents and teachers in October 2000. It describes the basic concepts and techniques of The Nurtured Heart Approach that is covered in further detail in the book Transforming the Difficult Child. This approach has had extroadinary results in helping parents and teachers to quickly and surely shift challenging children to using their intensity in positive and beautiful ways...without medications in 97% of the instances applied. ... Read more

Reviews (4)

1-0 out of 5 stars Poor Audio Quality, just a hour presentation.
I was very disappointed in the audio quality of a CD this priced. As someone else had said, it is just an hour long talk he gave in an auditorium, where there was a mic at a podium. At time the audio is acceptable at other times very poor, with lots of back ground effect.

Not worth it!

5-0 out of 5 stars This really helped
I just needed to hear about the approach over and over. This was my daily dose of inspiration that got me through.

5-0 out of 5 stars This was the ticket
I had read the book and had great results right away, BUT my husband and my mom, who helps watch the children often, were not about to either read the book or take directions from me in a straightforward way. SO, this little tape has worked it's magic. My husband listened to it over and over on the way to worked and now pleasantly competes with me to be the best parent (I love it) and my mom now gives me advice on how to do the approach (love this too.) All this has added up to a very good outcome for our son who was stuck in the confusion of very different styles of parenting. Now he's applauding himself for his successes. Before, when he was intensely negative, he seemed to hate himself.

1-0 out of 5 stars Review of the AUDIO version
This review is solely based on the cassette version of the book. I have not read the book nor do I plan to, after my experience with the audio version.

I was extremely dissapointed! You get a recording of a presentation made by (I assume Howard Glasser) to a group of parents. The recording is of low quality, I had a difficult, frustrating, time hearing the speaker.

The basic points presented are probably significant but are not really new. They seem like reencarnations of existing strategies I have heard in the past. Although the speaker may have different insights into these behavior modification strategies he does not elaborate with (realistic, every day) examples that will help me as a parent to apply the strategies in every day life.

Do NOT waste your money on this. As parents of ADHD children there are a lot of people trying to sell us miracle cures, this seems like one of them.

Instead, I would highly recommend the audio version of "How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk [ABRIDGED]"
Although this classic is not specifically designed for the "Difficult Child" the strategies certainly apply to "Difficult Children" and the presentation is coherent and complete, providing the parent with a set of tools to use immediately. ... Read more

200. From Beirut to Jerusalem
by Thomas L. Friedman
list price: $18.00
our price: $12.24
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1559942800
Catlog: Book (1990-07-01)
Publisher: HarperAudio
Sales Rank: 47773
Average Customer Review: 4.43 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

From Beirut to Jerusalem, winner of the 1989 National Book Award for nonfiction, is the startling, intense and thought-provoking account of Thomas L. Friedman's decade of reporting in the strife-ridden Middle East.

Thomas L. Friedman has won two Pulitzer Prizes -- one for his reporting in Beirut and one for reporting in Jerusalem, the two cities at the center of the Arab-Israeli conflict. No two cities have received more headline coverage, nor been more hotly debated, and no reporter has covered them more in depth than Friedman. in his journey from Beirut to Jerusalem, Friedman gives us a panoramic view of both the political and personal conflicts.

As a reporter for UPI and The New York Times, he was stationed in Beirut from 1979 to 1984, and in Lebanon from 1984 to 1989. He describes with intense vividness the sometimes horrifying, sometimes wondrous cities, for which, he says, nothing in his life had prepared him.

Friedman brings alive his journey from Beirut to Jerusalem through anecdotes, history, analysis and self-examination -- and puts all the currents into perspective with inimitable detail, clarity and remarkable insight. This is a much-needed framework for understanding the psychology and politics of the Middle East, and for understanding the future of this unique region. ... Read more

Reviews (122)

5-0 out of 5 stars a fantastic look at Israel, Palestine, and the Middle East
I had this book on my "to read" list for about a year, and then it sat on my shelf for five months after buying it before I finally got around to reading it. Now that I have finished the book I have to wonder what took me so long. The book is exceptional. From Beirut to Jerusalem is the story of Thomas Friedman and his analysis of the Palestine/Israel conflict. Friedman is a three time Pulitzer Prize winning reporter and this book presents and even handed and fair look at both the Palestinians and the Israelis. The book is broken up into three sections: Beirut, Jerusalem, and Washington.

Beirut is the story of the Palestinians. When Friedman was a young reporter, he was assigned a beat in Beirut (the newspaper made a point to assign a Jewish reporter to cover Beirut). Friedman does a good job showing exactly how the PLO came to power and the importance (and the flaw) of Yasir Arafat in the Palestinian movement. Despite being Jewish himself, Friedman does not present much of a bias against the Palestinians in his reporting. Friedman shows how there truly is no central authority for the Palestinians and how amazing it is the Arafat was able to unify the PLO into any sort of centralized body. The one thing that surprised me was how the Palestinians (and Beirut as a whole) was essential tribal politics. Beirut was an example of what can go right in having a disparate group of Christians, Jews, and Muslims live together in a Middle Eastern city. Beirut also ended up being a disaster of what can go wrong: everything. When push came to shove, the different groups split apart, formed militias and held fast to tribal lines. It was in Beirut that the PLO found a temporary home (at least until Israel pushed north).

Jerusalem is the story of the Jews. We all know the story of how after World War II the Jews were given a state in the Middle East and it was on their traditional homeland of Israel. This displaced the Arabs (Palestinians) that were living on the land at the time. Friedman discusses the Utopian vision that Israel is because of the religious context for the Jews. The interesting thing is that Israel was very nearly formed as a secular state for the diaspora Jews, and it was only the Orthodox and Ultra-Orthodox Jews that initially held onto their religion (rather than their culture). American Jews viewed Israel truly as the Promised Land, and the Christian world saw Israel through the tinted glasses of the Old Testament. Surrounded on all sides by Arabs who do not want the Jews in Israel, the nation has never truly been at peace and it is in this section of the book that Friedman shows just how difficult peace in the region is.

Washington is the end of the book and Friedman ties several things together. There was a very clear progression from Beirut to Jerusalem as Friedman was transferred over to Jerusalem, but at the same time I felt that Friedman presented enough material that I could begin to understand the context of Jerusalem. Thomas Friedman presents his thoughts on how diplomacy could possibly work for the Israelis and the Palestinians (using the Egypt/Israel peace as a model), and also further explains just how complex the relationships are in the Middle East. We get to see the attempts of the United States to broker peace deals, and how these succeeded and failed, and in some cases, why. Friedman discusses the role the United States does play, and perhaps should play in the region (at least as it affects Israel and Palestine).

This is an absolutely fascinating book. Obviously, this should be used as a primer on the subject and if one feels interested, should lead into further research into the region, but this was a very informative and interesting book and while I was confused at times by the complexity of the situation and shocked at the enormity of the problem, I also felt that I read a valuable book on the region. I thought this was an excellent book and it should belong on any "must read" list for books on the Middle East.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Frightening Firsthand Of The Middle East Conflict
Both a personal memoir and treatise on the Middle Eastern conflict, From Beirut To Jerusalem manages to excel in both areas.

Thomas L. Friedman writes of his years as a reporter in Beirut and Jerusalem (obviously), and the reader walks these streets along with him as he interviews and lives among both leaders and common people. In Beirut, the chaos and lawlessness of daily life is frightening, more scary than any horror novel. In Jerusalem, we see from Friedman's eyes the tension of the Palestinian situation and its effects on both Arabs and Jews.

What struck me the most, and impressed me, was Friedman's evenhandedness in his observations. He was never quick to place blame.

I found this book to be an informative treatise on the situation in the Middle East, the best on the subject I have read.

5-0 out of 5 stars THE BEST introduction to the middle east
As one of the first books I read about Middle East, and its
conflicts, I RECOMMEND this book STRONGLY for everyone: those that
are new to the region, needing an introduction to the Middle East,
as well as those who want to refresh their knowledge of the region
and the various forms of conflict so common there.

The Middle East can be a confusing place but Friedman sorts it out
for you. FRIEDMAN IS SUCH A TERRIFIC WRITER he made me feel
confident in my new found knowledge, relieved to have his insight
as my foundation, and so wanting to learn more about the entire

I read "From Beirut to Jerusalem" for the first time just before
the first Gulf War; now it is my touchstone, reading parts, or
all of it, again when things over there get crazier.

While Friedman focuses on Lebanon and Israel in this book, he
really is providing you with an understanding of the whole
framework of the Middle East and its conflicts: between countries,
within countries, amongst religions, between peoples of different
ethnic, cultural or racial backgrounds.

Warring religious conflicts within Lebanon may remind you of the
religious tensions between the Sunnis of northern Iraq and the
Shi'ia of south. Syria's late Assad's massive killing of his own
people will immediately remind you of the murder by Saddam Huessin
of the Kurds in northern Iraq.

Even if Israel didn't exist, many of these conflicts would have
happened anyway...and will continue to happen.

Now the fastest growing portion of the Arab and Muslim populations
are the school-aged and young adults. Most have limited
educations and little in the way of meaningful employment to look
forward to. Is it therefore any surprise some of them are so very
frustrated, dissatisfied and unhappy they would become militant
or terrorists.

Although Israel has done some good things for the peoples of the
West Bank, it is unfortunately outweighed by the bad its done there and in Gaza.

And with Israel's peoples being so different than most of the
Middle East and carrying Mohammed's Qu'ran stories of the Jews'
friendship and then perceived betrayal of Mohammed over 700 years
ago, one can see why attacking Israel is a whole lot easier for
these terrorists than challenging the regimes they live under for
better opportunities.

I wish all Americans, at least, would read this book so they
would be better versed in what happens in the rest of the world.
This is a GREAT BOOK.

5-0 out of 5 stars great book
I grew up in Beirut; I found this book very insightful. I can say that this book pretty much reflects what really happened in Beirut. If you want an objective view, this book is a must read. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to understand more about what the real situation is like in Palestine and Israel; And what took place in Beirut.

1-0 out of 5 stars Rambo's analysis
No matter how "exciting" this book may be to read (and not to base our opinions upon), just like Hollywood's Rambo, where Stalone knows everything about his enemy and overcomes all the problems to finally kill a whole army or nation (where ironically they all happen to be in what is known today as "terrorists") and sells it all around the globe. Friedman thinks he knows it all when it comes to "analysing" the Lebanese crisis and the Israeli socio-religious complexity, while in my opinion reading about the Mideast's history may be helpful, in addition to some classical music knowledge at least to know that Pachelbel's CaNon doesnt include any firing of any caNNon. And by the way, a Canon is the strictest form of imitation in musical composition in which the voices or melodies begin one after another, at regular intervals, successively taking up the same subject. ... Read more

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