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4.6 out of 5 stars
Lifting the Wheel of Karma
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on December 15, 2011
Format: Paperback
It was a pleasant surprise. A Western who speaks about Eastern spirituality, karma, dharma and chakra scares me because there is often the risk of falling into banality talking about serious topics in a superficial way or the risk to put too much emphasis as if he had understood everything. However, this book does not want to demonstrate anything, it doesn't want to teach anything and deals with the theme of spirituality in a lightweight and unobtrusive way leaving the reader with wide spaces to think. My feeling is perhaps also due to the descriptions of the vast landscape of Montana and the Indian landscape where the book's protagonist, Joseph, took refuge. It is a book which gives a feeling of freedom, of lightness and it is very easily to read thanks to a sliding style. I also perceived a certain delicacy in describing people and their feelings. It seems that the whole book is permeated with lightness, delicacy and discretion.
The story is about a boy from Montana, Joseph, who is paralyzed after a car accident and he hopes to find a solution by going to live with an Indian sage at the foot of the Himalaya. He wanted to find a quick solution to his problem but living there he learns more especially the meaning of some nightmares that haunted him since childhood.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2012
Format: Paperback
I was taken along for the ride in this touching and inspiring story of a young man's journey to find answers. Sometimes the journey is the answer, and sometimes you have to get lost to find yourself.

The first time you see Joseph he is in the midst of a fantastical and terrifying dream. He's had them since he was a young child. I could feel his frustration and sadness at having to cope with these disturbing visions for most of his life. Joseph suffers a personal tragedy that further shakes his outlook on life. This prompts his journey to India to find a man that feels like his last hope.

I really loved the imagery throughout the novel. Especially when the scene shifts to India. I have always thought of India as being very exotic, and it was nice to have it brought to life in this book. Joseph's mentor, Lahiri, was a very colorful and intriguing character. Their student/mentor relationship is tried when Lahiri finally gives up all his secrets.

The blend of reality and the mystical will leave you guessing as to where the story will end up. A profound commentary about the differences between being alive and truly living.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Lifting the Wheel of Karma is an enjoyable and thought provoking read. I went through it in just one sitting and I really cannot remember the last time I did that with any book. This is partly because it is relatively short, but also because after the first couple of dozen pages or so where it gets off to rather a slow start, this becomes quite a compulsive read where you really want to see what the outcome is going to be.

Joseph is born and brought up in rural Montana. From an early age he has been plagued with visions of demons which invade his sleeping, and sometimes waking hours. Following a traumatic event he feels compelled to travel to India to visit a sage. What follows is Joseph's gradual enlightenment and knowledge and understanding of various key philosophical and spiritual concepts which are accepted in India and elsewhere, but which in our materialistic Western society are often forgotten or ignored.

This is well written and the story is told in a measured way. The life lessons which Joseph learns are very much an ongoing process, where the time scale in which the learning takes place is not important and where he has to become aware of these truths for himself. It is not going to work if someone is spoon feeding him this knowledge. There are quite a number of different routes the author could have chosen as an ending to this book, but I thought the way he opted for worked particularly well and led to a very satisfactory conclusion.

Occasionally one reads a book which is rather more than a good read, and which one feels is actually spiritually uplifting to an extent. I imagine that quite a lot of readers will get a lot out of this story provided they are receptive to the message which it is putting across.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
#1 HALL OF FAMEon September 15, 2012
Format: Paperback
In Montana, Joseph Connell suffers from horrible visions that he believes are meaningful but has no idea what he should do with them. Whereas eighteen year old Joey turned to martial arts, his older brother Billy works closely with their dad in the family bottling business. Billy tells Joey that he will soon be a dad.

At a tournament, Tom batters Joey sending him to the emergency room where he lives for several months in a vegetative state fighting three warriors in his head. Suddenly he announces to his parents he wants to go home. Wheelchair bound Joseph believes that mystical elder Lahiri can help him find answers to the crippling visions. The wise India native begins mentoring Joseph on a journey on balancing his karma deep in the Himalayas.

Lifting the Wheel of Karma is an fascinating allegorical tale that focuses on the importance of spiritual awakening and balance. Joseph's journey is a terrific trek that physically takes readers to India's Himalayas but more significantly inside the soul of a man. Lahiri and the protagonist's dreams bring mysticism to the storyline while Joseph's family provides western values as caring sensible people. Readers will appreciate this engaging metaphoric reflection on life as the game is fixed.

Harriet Klausner
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on September 2, 2012
Format: Paperback
Simplistic, well written book in an easy going style. Gives a brief and 'tip of the iceberg' introduction to karma.

It appears that the book has a big name publisher behind it, but it is not the case. Could not put the book down.

Maybe the next book can be on Gita and its impact on everyday life.

Overall great book and a must read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Rarely does a book bring tears to my eyes at the end. If you enjoy a book with a surprising, completely unpredicted twist at the end, you'll love this one. Best of all it's not bogged down with lengthy descriptions, which makes it a quick, fast and light read, while nonetheless packed with substance. At the end you will surely be stunned and you might never look at people in your own family and circle of loved ones the same.

The book includes vivid descriptions of India which I can vouch for, having been there a few times myself. It's also packed with some surprising facts about India, Hinduism and the British rule of India. The story weaves in elements of prophetic dreams, astral projection, visions and more.

The book is concise, well written, and contains story elements that everyone can relate to--mainly, that suffering sometimes seems unavoidable, as if predestined. The big lesson is that karma doesn't always work the way you think it does--but I won't spoil it for you by saying any more.

Susan Schenck, author of The Live Food Factor: The Comprehensive Guide to the Ultimate Diet for Body, Mind, Spirit & Planet
and
Beyond Broccoli, Creating a Biologically Balanced Diet When a Vegetarian Diet Doesn't Work
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
"Lifting the Wheel of Karma" works on several different, although related, levels. On the surface it is the story of a journey, the journey of a battered and crippled young man to restore his body and to walk again. On a deeper level, it is a story about reincarnation and the power of forgiveness, subjects which only recently have begun to bubble to the surface of western thought.

Do you believe in coincidence? in reincarnation? in the power of love? Whatever your answer, you will reflect on these issues while you read this novel. Could these ideas have validity? Certainly, they do for the author of this book. and perhaps you will feel they deserve more consideration in your own life once you have finished reading.

Five Stars!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on November 15, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Lifting the Wheel of Karma
Lifting the Wheel of Karma
This is an unusual review for an unusual novel.

It started a few months back when I browsed through Bees Knees reviews for a nice
interesting book. I came upon Lifting the Wheel of Karma by Paul H Magid and
liked the blurb. I signed up and minutes later received a notification that the
author will get in touch for a review. That is when it hit me. As a Christian, I
believe that I am always protected and that information and a difference in
opinion or point of view can't harm me. That said. How do I review a book that
might be in complete juxtaposition with my own belief system without offending.
With time I got to know the author a lot better and decided that such a good
noble man could never be an author whom would actively and purposefully offend
others.

By the time I received his novel I felt like a kid in a candy shop. I was so
excited and all my previous trepidations were gone.

I started to read his book, this novel but I gave up on reading it, and started to live it instead.
It is not a book and it is not a novel. It is a profound spiritual journey. A very personal journey which the reader under takes with Joseph, Lahiri and Billy. The trinity in my
point of view.

Joseph undertakes a journey to India to receive a miracle cure from a Sage named
Lahiri. He has been fighting his own demons from the age of five and tragic
circumstances left his body as broken as his mind and subsequently his spirit.
He asks his brother to accompany him on this spiritual journey.

In India he finds Lahiri. The miracle cure however is not to be found without
extreme effort. Joseph, wrapped up in his own life and problems does not notice
much of the goings on around him.

It is soon apparent that Joseph is not the only person fighting inner demons.

Billy, Joseph older brother is according to me one of the unsung heroes in this
journey. He carries the burden of standing by impotently as he and the rest of
Joseph's family watches Joseph fight a battle he thinks he is fighting alone.
Typical of humanity, Joseph has convinced himself that his fight against his
inner demons are a solitary act and that it touched none but him.

[It might interest the reader to know that at this stage me and the author had
A difference of opinion. He felt as if Joseph had a very good understanding of
what his family was going through. He mentioned that Joseph left implicitly
with the aim to spare his parents and brother some further grief.

Although I concede with Joseph having some understanding of the anguish
his family must have undergone, I perceived Joseph as only partially and peripherally
aware of the suffering they went through due to his inner battle and later
his very real physical battle for survival. It is amazing to read a book where
the author can relay a story in such a manner that I as a reader felt I could differ
from the author himself based on my own life experience].

Billy's constant support is however a testimony that the act of observing can be
An equally painful and isolating experience. Billy however never gives up on
Joseph.

Not only Joseph and Billy is fighting an unseen terrible force but sometimes the
savior turns out to be the one in need. This is definitely the case in this
journey. Were Joseph not so caught up in his own suffering he might have noticed
the suffering of those around him.

This journey tough me two very valuable life lessons. Although the book itself
is set against Eastern mysticism and Greek mythology the basic construct of all
religions soon become apparent. With relief I found that I need not defend a
different belief system to that of my own, rather I find myself overjoyed to say
that this journey has made it clear that the basic religious constructs of all
religions is echoed in the Physicians creed - first do no harm.

I seldom read a book twice. I simple feel that my memory of a story is of such a
nature that no real need exists for me to read any story twice or more when the
world is full of other great stories to be read. In Lifting the Wheel of Karma
this is however not the case. I feel the book has many other journeys it will
take me on if only I am willing to get on the ride. A ride I'm looking forward
to.

The story is beautifully written with a precise and linear construct line
throughout. The facts in the books are carefully researched and are interjected in
such a fashion that it serves to fill your journey with the same riches as that
of Indian spices and colorful Saris.

I again find myself with an inadequate rating system. On a scale from 1-5, I give this book 6 stars.
This is a book I will recommend to everyone and which I would gift to anyone with
pride and the knowledge that I helped them on a personal journey of their own.

It is impossible to read this book and not walk away with a feeling of coming
full circle. I, now am left wondering what my Dharma might be.
I hope that this book will get you dear reader to wonder about that as well,
What is your Dharma in life?

Interview
I asked:
How long did the research take and how much of it do you do yourself?
Paul replied:
Okay, so, first...research. This took me twenty-five years. No kidding. I knew nothing significant about India when I started and it would be fair to say that I have read 50 or more books on India. I had to learn so much about India in so many different areas, because I knew my novel needed to be accurate -historically, culturally, mythological, and even socially. India's history goes back over 5,000 years; I sought out sources of information that went all the way back to the original Indus Valley settlement.

I asked:
Have you been to India? If so share some of your impressions.

Paul replied:
After decades of research I finally visited India several times, even living there for several months, which was an adventure in many ways. I immediately connected with India in so many ways. Certainly it's completely different to my experiences of living in the U.S., but that was also a good deal of its charm for me. Expanding my horizons by seeing how other people live is always a priceless adventure to me.

I asked:
Your blurb says it is a mix of Greek mythology with Eastern mysticism. I found a lot of parallels with Christianity and shared belief systems. Was this intended?

Paul replied
o The Greek Mythology connection is in the sense that I believe there are supernatural forces that affect, influence, and ultimately guide the course of our lives and journey, in the same way that Greek Gods interacted with humans, changing the course of their lives and of humanity, for example, in the way that Prometheus stole fire from Zeus and gave it to mortals, thereby changing the course of humanity...at least according to Greek Mythology.

There are most definitely familiar patterns of Christianity in my novel, as well as eastern philosophy. I believe this is because all of the great religions of the world have common foundations -love, forgiveness, healing, and redemption.

I asked:
Do you believe in reincarnation?
Paul replied:
o As for reincarnation, I most assuredly do believe in it. For me, it explains a great deal...but I don't want to give too much away.
After all is said and written, this is a must read for all. I can't recommend it enough!
I again want to thank Denise Jones for all the trouble she has to go through to get this to sound as if I can speak the English language! Thanks Denise.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 8, 2012
Format: Paperback
I am a 10 year old and I LOVED this book. The author was very descriptive so I could visualize everything that was going on in the book. Lifting the Wheel of Karma is an AMAZING story, with a shocking, jaw dropping twist at the end that literally changed my view of the ENTIRE story! The story, although it does have a minimal amount of violence and fighting, is inspiring and uplifting. This book was a great read.

I would 100% recommend this book to anyone that enjoys books about spirituality and healing. Paul H. Magid has done a fantastic job writing Lifting the Wheel of Karma.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 16, 2012
Format: Paperback
I am so glad I had the opportunity to read this book. It took me a couple of chapters to engage in the story, then I didn't want to put the book down.

The story follows Joseph, a teenager who suffers from vivid dreams from a young age. He has an older brother Billy and helps work his fathers ranch. Joseph enjoys karate, he is very skilled and unbeaten. Onhis way home from a fight, which he lost for the first time, he is in a serious car accident, which leaves him in coma.

When Joseph awakes he only has the use of his left arm. Joseph travels to India, to a man named Lahiri who claims to be able to help Joseph through the power of mind over matter. Joseph spends many years with Lahiri, but he is no closer to walking.

Joseph loses both his parents in an accident, so he returns home to help run his fathers business with his brother Billy.

Years later Joseph returns to India to Lahiri's house, to the girl he loved and left behind. Many amazing things happen when Joseph meditates and lets his spirit guide him to the truth of his past, and why he has been sent to learn from his past mistakes.

Forgiveness plays a big part in helping things come full circle, and for everyone involved being able to finally move on to their spirit adventure in peace. Joseph returns to see Billy an old man happy to see his brother again after so many years.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this, the story really moved me. Paul H. Magid done an excellent job writing this novel, I was glued to the pages. It was beautifully put together and the ending made great sense to me., I went through a whirlwind of emotions and the author had me thinking about my life.
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