I was so looking forward to retreating to a peaceful space at home to read this book after I picked it up. I knew the stories in this book would be compelling. What I didnt know was how the inspiring stories of peacemakers would both give me great hope for our planets future, and keep my heart in painful yearning: we still have a long way to go.
The book is the journey of one man into the hearts and minds of some of the most powerfully affective peace activists in the world. He interviewed people who rose to the call for peace on the planet, and did what they could in their own region of the world, and in their own unique style. Each interview is preceded by an excellent education on the regions background of angry conflict and war. I learned much more than the everyday media presented about each of these regions. And, I have to admit, I felt a little bit of shame at the way my beloved country has handled and spurred on some of the conflicts. For example: The United States supported terrorist operations in Central America, all in the name of protecting its "interests" during several presidencies.
THE SOUL GARDEN:
The Soul Garden by Donald Norfolk is delightful and inspiring reading. In the process of presenting and developing his concept of an ideal Soul Garden "a quiet, unspoilt place where we can transcend the concerns and distractions of our individual daily lives and achieve a closer link with the universal whole" Norfolk discusses different cultures, ancient history, medieval life, Victorian times, and the history of gardens. Norfolk also provides suggestions and helpful hints to the reader for cultivating ones own Soul Garden. Rather than being a technical manual, however, the author states the following about his book in the preface, "This book aims to stimulate the right hemisphere. It uses gardening not as an end in itself, but as an enjoyable means to a crucially important end, the promotion of wholeness, health, and healing. Its prime concern is not to raise plants, but to cultivate happier, healthier human beings."
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