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In Dire Straits: Keeping Spirit Alive When the Wheels Come Off Paperback – March 5, 2011


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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Jim Currie is a Seattle writer and ecologist whose credits include works of fiction, non-fiction, and over twenty publications on natural resource management and biology. He holds an honor's degree from Harvard and a masters from Berkeley. His writing and teaching reflect an interdisciplinary perspective and wide-ranging curiosity in the arts, science, humanities and philosophy. His published titles include "The Mindful Traveler: A Guide to Journaling and Transformative Travel" (Open Court, 2000). His work in the environmental field includes innovative ways to protect water quality and habitat. His teaching and lecturing draws upon integral psychology and Eastern philosophy. Jim writes extensively on ecology, conservation and sustainable economy. His web-based organization, www.SydneysThumb.com includes members from across the globe and is dedicated to climate action, species rescue and travel that leaves shallow footprints.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Savant Books & Publications LLC (March 5, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984555293
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984555291
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,629,991 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Chris Merritt on September 29, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Jim Curie's latest book, In Dire Straits, follows on from his successful The Mindful Traveler: A Guide to Journaling and Transformative Travel.
This is a wonderful book to read and once started, I found that I couldn't put it down, although I prefer not to read books about author's personal, stories, more I want to be transported to a different place. However, this is the story of an open-minded scientist who explores all options with great humour and perspective.

His relationship to the animal world as a healing connection is something that everyone could benefit from. Our connections to the natural world have been lost in many cases. In Jim Curie's case, the animal is the bear, an animal with courage and strength, nurturing, comforting, hibernating over winter in the den ready to emerge in Spring with her cubs. The bear is a strong symbol for Native Americans and a healing symbol for the Sioux. This book is a delight and a must read. You won't want to put it down until you learn more of Curie's story and what happens.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Richard C Kelley on May 22, 2011
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I usually have a hard time reading, or at least finishing, memoirs by people who have been sick or the victim of a crime, or who have had some other disaster befall them. Most published writers in the genre are able to tug at my heartstrings, but they don't get beyond that to illuminating our shared humanity through our common predicaments.

Mr. Currie writes of the personal in an intimate and readable way. His own life experience is so unusual, and the person it has made him is so unique, that I found myself more curious with each page. He doesn't just write about being sick and then getting well; his is a triumph of spirit. In the process he shares so much of what is a Jim Currie that the reader will close the book feeling that they have made a very interesting friend.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Holly Alderman on March 25, 2011
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In this poignant yet humorous quest for personal and environmental healing, Jim Currie uses an artist's view of the world to open our eyes along the path of mindful travel through imagination and chronic suffering toward renewal of self and society. Mirrors of Currie's illness glimmer as startling truths in our parallel universe: insights on international politics, the twin towers, Iraq.

At the one-way starting gate of grief, soon afflicted with incessant physical and psychological pain, never far from despair or disaster, Currie brightens the way with comic relief while he follows up the latest medical research and hunches, only to wait a month or more for each appointment to consult doctors for remedies that lead counter-intuitively by leaps of faith to excruciating bee venom. Captured by microbial infection in a race against time, he must penetrate all sorts of camouflage to find hidden truth about cures for disease and ecological threats, trusting that something regenerative will emerge. He turns away from sorrow and chaos of the medical establishment toward a unique exploration of "keeping spirit alive when the wheels come off."

Fortified by friendship with Madeleine and a fantasy mystical companion, the author as intuitive sleuth offers sublime spiritual references and quotations. Beyond hope, will he discover the impossible, a cure? As I finished the last page, his inner quest for lightness and health of heart and mind, body and spirit and his cosmic quest for a cure for the natural world seemed contagious -- I began to read it again as I too want to be a seeker of obscure and controversial knowledge, or at least a keen strategist.
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