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The Book of Est Paperback – May 18, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
Since est, in the form described, no-longer exists, it probably no-longer serves the purpose for which it was apparently originally written: to peel back the curtain on something that people could not make sense of from the outside, and therefore concluded was necessarily dark and sinister. In that sense, this book (accepted on its face) lends credibility retroactively to what went on in the est course described and to its spiritual/intellectual successors.
If you are reading it looking for the kind of "answers" contained within the course as a way of not having to take a similar kind of training or education now, you will fall short-- although it seems like much of the content is described, the nuts-and-bolts of many of the "processes" or exercises are described at a high level.. and since these programs were designed to be experienced, and to have the experience cause something for the participant in terms of their own consciousness or awareness, reading this and expecting to gain the kind of outcome the course would produce is probably akin to expecting to get fit by reading about someone's adventures in Army basic training.
So I got this book to learn about the material better AND about the source of Landmark's seminars. I got both.
4 out of 5 is still a good review for me. I'm not talking about the material here but the book and its presentation which I thought was good. A 5 would have come towards the ending with a little more comprehensible discussion. I got lost in some of it... but then again, it was me, and I own that part of it too.
Overall: I came away with a deeper sense of what is possible, in transformation, and in life. For that I am grateful.
According to "est" the reason our lives don't work is because we are living mechanically in our mental machinery (our conditioning) instead of freshly in the world of experienced experience. The purpose of the "est" training is to blow up all our life-denying beliefs so we can begin creating what we really want. I took est in Boston in the summer of 1978 and had my ass kicked. "The Book of est" is an uncannily accurate re-enactment of the training I experienced and is filled with gems like:
- Resistance leads to persistence.
- Re-creation leads to eration.
- Happiness is a function of accepting what is.
- Unreality is physical, measurable and based on agreement.
- We are the source of everything we experience.
- An ego is a point of view attempting to cause its own survival.
- The mind is an associative machine that operates on an illogic of identities.
- We can transcend our stimulus-response machine mind by experiencing it.
- To move on choose what you've got.
And if you did est you will undoubtedly remember the frequent body scans that were a welcome respite from the harshness of the training. We can systematically reduce our mental conditioning by viewing and dissolving areas of blocked consciousness in our body. As a result I also recommend The Art of Living: Vipassana Meditation by William Hart and the 10-Day Vipassana course it points to. EST doesn't change what you know, it changes who you are. I highly recommend "The Book of est" to anyone interested in transformation.
As an aside, if you want to increase your ability to "choose what you've got," I also highly recommend The Tapping Solution as Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) trigger the "saying yes to what is" which is the core of all enlightenment experience. Referencing the booklet "If God Had Meant Man to Fly He Would Have Given Him Wings" by Werner Erhard:
EFT helps you to keep saying it the way it really is.
EFT helps you to experience it.
EFT helps you to get in touch with what’s so.
EFT helps you to say all of the bad things and all of the good things you haven’t been saying.
EFT helps you to accept what is.
EFT helps you to choose what you’ve got.
EFT helps you to realise that you’re alright the way you are.
EFT helps you to experience what’s so.
EFT helps you to get that you are ok the way you are.
EFT helps you to get out of the trap by being present to what is present.