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Spirituality Simplified Paperback – November 19, 2003
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How often have you wished that life came with an instruction manual just like electronic equipment does? Well, this is the book I had been longing for. I was so excited to read it, and apply it in my life to further my spiritual understanding. Jeff really does make it seem so simple, clear and inspirational. --Nancy Fleming-Walsch, President & Co-founder, Conversations with God Foundation
With Spirituality Simplified, author Jeff Maziarek has assembled some of the most useful and profound keys to advancing along the spiritual path in a very easy-to-read and easy-to-understand book. This book is a definite must-read for any spiritual aspirant, or anyone interested in understanding the nature of who they are and how their life unfolds. Spirituality Simplified is one of the most practical introductions to the spiritual path available today. --Pete Koerner, author of The Belief Formula
Looking at my bookshelves I see many, many books that have led me on a spiritual path, seeking something new, something different, something to give me direction. Every book has one or two tools that I was able to take and use. How I wish I would have had Spirituality Simplified when I first started. It certainly would have prevented me from spinning out looking for spiritual direction. I highly recommend this book as the best starting point one can have for spiritual direction. For the seasoned seeker, there are many reminders of what we know, but may have forgotten along the path. --Irene Watson, author of The Sitting Swing
About the Author
Jeff Maziarek is an inspirational speaker and author. He lives in Northern Illinois with his wife, Andrea. In addition to Spirituality Simplified, Jeff also is the author of Codi's Journey, a heartfelt story about his Border Collie who passed away in 2005. It is available on Amazon.com in both print and eBook editions.
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Top customer reviews
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We feel so strongly about this book that we purchased 20 copies of it and are giving them to our family as gifts and are going to give out a few to our friends and ask them to read it, sign their name, and pass it on to someone else who would like to read it....kind of like "Pay it Forward". There are very few books that I feel strongly enough to write a review on, and this is one of those "rare gems". Read it, you won't be disappointed!
I've been on a 'spiritual but not religious' journey for the past 5-6 years, so nearly everything Jeff wrote confirmed things I've come to believe and accept in my own life.
What I especially liked is that there was no 'new age fluff.' It was not about astrology, psychics, moon phases, etc., etc. It was down-to-earth principles about gaining a better understanding of the essential nature of the God-Force/Spirit and how we can experience this wonderful Force in our lives (without having to adhere to numerous 'religious' doctrines).
Jeff's first chapter is titled "Open-Mindedness" and truly, this is what it's going to take to explore principles that may not fit with one's long-held beliefs and ideas about religion. But if you have the courage to espose yourself to new concepts, I think you will find this book an exciting and exhilirating read.
I found Maziarek's approach to strike a good balance between being open minded versus credulous, and I found his (working) conclusions to be generally reasonable, though some people will surely find some of his conclusions to be a bit out there (but who can authoritatively say what's ultimately true or false in matters which are unprovable either way?).
The book is organized well and easy to read, and Maziarek has done a good job of pulling together ideas from various sources, although some of the ideas won't be easy to absorb if you haven't encountered them before (but they're worth absorbing). An added plus is that the summaries at the end of each chapter nicely capture all of the key points from the chapter, so they provide a very convenient means to quickly review the content of the book; every book should have summaries like this!
As far as the target audience for the book, I think the book's subtitle is accurate: "An Ideal Starting Point for Those New to the Spiritual Path" and "A Handy Reference Guide for Experienced Seekers," though I think that the former group will likely get more out of the book. I see myself as more of a member of the latter group, and I did benefit from the book, but I have to admit that many of the ideas were so familiar to me that I sometimes found myself getting a bit bored and thus eager to move on.
As a final comment, I just wanted to note that books in this genre aren't generally written to convince rigid skeptics to adopt a spiritual viewpoint. In other words, such books aren't philosophy books. Rather, they're meant for people who are inclined (or at least willing) to accept that reality is mysterious, and maybe "wilder" than we normally imagine (or can imagine), so we have to explore possible worldviews with a genuinely open mind, guided often by hints rather than logico-empirical evidence and arguments of the sort normally expected in philosophy. To a large extent, it's a matter of (a) tentatively adopting beliefs, acting on them, and seeing what happens to then judge the reasonableness of the beliefs, rather than (b) being willing to act on beliefs only after first "proving" their validity. While the latter approach is akin to philosophy (especially Western philosophy, except for pragmatism), the former approach is actually akin to science, and thus the approach to spirituality described by Maziarek and countless others has much in common with science, a main difference being that science aims for intersubjective consensus whereas spirituality allows much room for subjectivity and resulting plurality.