Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Bliss by Katherine Ramsland

Bliss: Writing to Find Your True Self by Katherine Ramsland is a self-help book that uses visualization and writing exercises to help the reader discover his/her path to bliss by first looking at the values the individual has and inviting the reader to let those values be the foundation for finding fulfillment in life.

Bliss does not necessarily mean being an artist.  It can be found in serving your community or even planting a lovely garden, creating a home where people feel welcome or sharing your wisdom through service.  There are no professional roles in life that cannot be a part of experiencing bliss, not when they are a natural outcome of something that matters to you personally.

This book caught my eye when it was first published but I didn’t immediately read it.  Now I wish I had.  I think it would have been a lot more insightful for me had I read it around the same time I first read The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron.  I probably would have found it far more engaging.  However, I must say that many of the exercises are best done within a group dynamic and the author clearly wants this book to be read and shared.  Of course, two people would suffice but you get the feeling, when you read the exercises, that a slightly larger but still small group would be great–say four to six members.

It’s a good book.  It didn’t blow me away.  Maybe because of bad timing.  Maybe because it was geared more for a group.  For anyone who is still in the afterglow of Cameron’s book, this might be a good choice.  Or maybe it would be redundant.  I don’t know.  But I’m curious to know if anyone else has read it . . . what did you think?

There is one technique she recommends for remembering dreams that I think would be quite effective.  She suggests setting your alarm for 45 minutes before you need to get up and then allowing yourself to return to a light doze.  I plan on giving this a try by setting my alarm to go off very quietly 45 minutes before I need to get up and then let it ring as it usually does at my true wake up time.  I know that I have often had my most vivid dreams when I almost wake up and then fall back to sleep only to be woken up not long afterwards.  No doubt this technique could bring very good results.

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