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The Ken Commandments: My Search for God in Hollywood Hardcover – September 12, 2017
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“Uplifting and inspiring, Ken Baker has written a compelling story about the transformation that occurs when we search for God in the most unlikely of places.”
–Deepak Chopra, New York Times Bestselling author of You Are the Universe
"Hollywood is known for a lot of things, but religion and spirituality is usually not at the top of the list. In The Ken Commandments we learn that there is at times perhaps something much deeper than fame being pursued in Hollywood: A search for faith and meaning amid the narcissistic buzz of celebrity. Ken brings us inside a world that we don't see every day on E!, yet it is perhaps the most important story he could tell; an honest look not only at Hollywood, but at himself and how he sought to find meaning and purpose in the very place these virtues had been dissipated.
The Ken Commandments is a groundbreaking account of how even the rich and famous and beautiful are in fact not necessarily different from us all in their struggle to find peace and meaning as they grapple with the biological reality of human existence."
–Dr. Drew Pinsky, author and TV host
"Ken digs deep and makes some revealing discoveries that may surprise some and inspire others."
–Giuliana Rancic, E! host and NY Times Bestselling Author
About the Author
Ken Baker is an award-winning author and journalist currently serving as Senior Correspondent for E! News and E! Online. His memoir Man Made: A Memoir of My Body was released as a major motion picture titled The Late Bloomer. Ken is also the founder of The Mindful Writing Center (www.mindfulwritingcenter.com), an online learning academy that teaches writers how to enhance their creativity and communication skills through mindfulness and meditation.
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Top customer reviews
Another plus for the book is that the author's search is very inclusive, ranging from the Kardashian clan's evangelical protestant church to atheism, various kinds of meditation, various kinds of yoga, psychics, Scientology, and so on, reporting on personal visits with spiritual leaders ranging from Joel Osteen to Deepak Chopra.
Along the way, his strongest objection is to the idea that any one faith is THE way. He also eventually realizes being a professional gossip may hold him back from his new values, even though he tries to honestly describe the good along with the bad. I'm glad he figured that out, because that aspect of the book had been bothering me as I read.
Jesus once promised "seek, and ye shall find", and that seems true of this quest as well, though the author doesn't end up following only Jesus. He does, however, find answers that satisfy, leaving him better for the search.
Overall, not terribly profound, but definitely an enjoyable and somewhat enlightening read.
I live out here in Hollywood and have had my share of celebrities and their situational ethics and pretentious beliefs. Not all of them, but many at the end of the day, they believe in one thing: Themselves and nothing else or no one else.
Years ago, Hollywood jumped on the Joseph Campbell bandwagon, especially screenwriters, because Campbell mentioned Star Wars and the cottage industry screenwriting gurus incorporated "Hero's Journey..." blah, blah, blah and other Joe Campbell lingo into all of their teachings. Robert Mitchum's quote applies.
Thank God! I discovered Joseph Campbell before I truly discovered Hollywood.
Ken Baker weaves an interesting spiritual quest for answers, antithetic to Bill Maher.
His catalyst, which is relatable to most of us, is losing his religion in a hedonistic place like Tinseltown. NBA player Lamar Odom's road to excess is the jumping off point, or "leap of faith" that Ken must perform a deep high-dive into his soul. He goes on to tell a stereotypical Catholic upbringing where the family of five attends church and the father goes through the motions to placate the mother, but never honestly embraces God...
An amazing spiritual story evolves from this tragedy.
Ken Baker's an excellent writer and entertaining to read. I burned through his book and enjoyed the spiritual quest alongside him as a reader. As a senior correspondent for E! his job "is to report on the gamut of entertainment news...", " ...as well as the daily hookups, breakups, and screw-ups of the world's biggest stars." Who better qualified? I ask. You will actually learn something from Ken's book, and it might even contradict what you think about some of the celebrities he interviewed. If you've seen
Thomas Peter "Tom" Shadyac's "I Am" documentary or most recently Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath, then one could view Hollywood as a spiritual sinkhole.
Key takeaway is: Don't discover God on your deathbed. If you chose not to have faith, or find religion a fairly tale, Hey, "whatever gets you through the night," as John Lennon once wrote. Maybe God is George Burns to some people in Hollywood. However, for me, I am personally comfortable with Camus' logic that:
"I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die to find out there isn't, than live as if there isn't and to die to find out that there is."
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