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End Your Story. Begin Your Life...: Mastering the Practice of Freedom Hardcover – April 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 229 pages
  • Publisher: Satori Books (April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780615324234
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615324234
  • ASIN: 0615324231
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #317,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Freedom is a powerful word. It is perhaps one of the most cherished words in the English language. Certainly it is so here in America, where we value our freedom more than anything. Yet what does it mean, to be free?

At the level most people relate to the notion of freedom, it means the freedom to express ourselves in whatever way we wish: to choose our work or career, our friends, our politics, our religion, to choose where we live.

Yet based on my life experience, I have a very different understanding of freedom. At its most vital level, it means the freedom to be, to be the beautiful, conscious person you are. It is to be inwardly free, not restricted or bound by any mental or emotional limitation, not subject to any emotional reactivity. Being free means feeling relaxed, at peace, and open in each and every moment. This was the experience of the woman at Esalen during her moment of awakening.

So, how do you get to this state of inner freedom, the freedom simply to be? The quickest path I know of, and the subject of this book, is to undergo the shift in perception which leads directly to inner freedom. It is seeing, like the woman at Esalen, that you are not your story. You are not any story. You are not your psychological and emotional history, nor are you your self-image. You are not your cultural, ethnic, national, social, or religious story.

And what is a story? It is anything we think or say to ourselves or others to describe what has happened, is happening, or is going to happen in the future. Some stories are true, and some are fictional, but either way they are still just stories, a collection of words inside our heads.

Problems arise and our freedom is hindered when the story defines us, when we derive our identity, our sense of meaning from it, as in: "Things shouldn't be this way," "That person is a bad person," "I am totally alone, loved by no one," "I was abandoned/abused as a child," or "I fear God's judgment."

All your stories, memories, experiences, have shaped your personality but they are still only that: your stories. They may have been real once, or seemed real, but are definitely not real now. They are an illusory world existing between your ears, in the form of fleeting thoughts, beliefs, pictures, and ideas of "self," with corresponding feelings and emotions in your body.

When conflict or suffering arises, or when your buttons are pushed, it is because a person or an event, real or imagined, contradicts your view or expectation--your "story"--about the way things should be, or ought to be. The conflict is experienced as a disturbing feeling or emotion, whether of anxiety, anger, fear, or something else in your body.

However, the upsetting feelings and emotions only exist because of the stories feeding them, keeping them alive. And the stories, thoughts, and beliefs are always changing. They come and they go. However, when you are not holding onto any story in your mind, but are simply very aware and relaxed in the present, your emotional state is always one of ease, harmony, and flow. This is a very important point to understand if you are interested in finding true inner peace.

To know this, to find your identity not in stories, not in your body, mind, or personality, but in the moment-by-moment flow of being itself, is true freedom. Then we feel inspired to write a new, conscious story for ourselves, a story which works by supporting our own and others' well-being. We begin, literally, to infuse our lives, relationships, and work with this ever-new consciousness and the positive, creative stories flowing from it. As a result, our power to manifest what we truly need and want is greatly magnified, and living itself becomes a lot more fun.

(from The Introduction)

From the Inside Flap

The teaching itself is simple. It is to grasp that while we are a story-telling people, the stories we tell come and go, they change, but we, in our essence, are always here... (Introduction)

Many people assume that awakening is synonymous with freedom from desire, but it is actually not being attached to desire. People who are awake are still living, breathing, feeling human beings. They still have desires and preferences, but the difference is they are not attached to them... (Chapter Three)

Some spiritual teachings support the idea of getting rid of the ego, even "annihilating" it to become enlightened or free. Yet, upon awakening, we find that the ego is still here. Indeed, in terms of conscious creation, your ego will become your ally... (Chapter Four)

Money is the number-one issue people fight about in their relationships. In the face of the marketplace of daily life, it requires nothing less than awakening to be able to let go of worrying about money... (Chapter Seven)

Customer Reviews

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I greatly enjoyed "End Your Story...Begin Your Life."
Dr. Jason Hamed
In this book, Dr. Dreaver gives us the tools to help us shed from the pain and suffering of our past "stories" into a new life of freedom and peace.
dawndcnd
I am a habitual reader, especially when it comes to books such as End Your Story.
Tony D.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Robert A. Nozik on May 29, 2010
This is the book all seekers of spiritual awakening have been waiting for. Ji takes the ageless spiritual truths from the East and presents them in a practical, easily understood manner from a Western perspective. Jim's book will get you onto the right path to spiritual fulfillment; it changed my life and will change yours as well.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Conway on June 15, 2010
Thank you, Jim, for bringing forth to readers your extremely helpful, sensible, and straightforward book, "End Your Story, Begin Your Life." This is a fine combination of nondual spirituality, cognitive therapy and depth psychology. The question-answer format found throughout much of the book will be attractive for readers who hold these very questions. I'm also glad you included your poignantly personal 'story' in the Appendix about what you have so heroically endured with a major health challenge, your inspiration from dear mentors Jean Klein and J. Krishnamurti, and your progressively more radical awakenings.

Bowing to thy Infinite-Eternal Divine Nature!"

--Timothy Conway, teacher and author of Women of Power & Grace, the forthcoming 2-volume India's Sages, and website Enlightened-spirituality. org.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Anatol Zinchenko on May 28, 2010
Perhaps the title of the book should have been "You Are Not Your Story" which is what Jim teaches in a very clear and concise manner via three simple steps, which are reinforced in each chapter with beautiful simple insightful stories. Jim tells us that we love stories and he is a wonderful story teller using them to tell us that "we are not our story" and thus guiding us deeper and deeper into our true nature.

By seeing through our false identity with our story, and realizing that we are not our story, not any story, what is left is our true identity as spacious-loving-awareness. "End Your Story, Begin Your Life" is a wonderful tool guiding us in the process of awakening to our true nature.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Stefano Siciliano on May 28, 2010
Jim is very skilled in meeting people where they are and leading them towards what more is possible. This book, "End Your Story, Begin Your Life" is a great example of that.
It gave me the exact support & pointers needed to see that everything is a story... including this name & personality!
I'm eternally grateful and suggest this book to anyone that's really committed to awakening.
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Jim Dreaver is an extremely generous author/spirit/teacher who teaches the practice of "becoming free". He condenses the spiritual wisdom of the ages into a simple,practical application for self realization and freedom. His book, "End Your Story, Begin Your Life" is a brilliant, clearly-written blueprint for personal awakening.
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