Profile for Halifax Student Account > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Halifax Studen...
Top Reviewer Ranking: 2,567
Helpful Votes: 823

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Halifax Student Account "a-beautiful-idea" (Liverpool, UK)

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20
The Fall: The Insanity of the Ego in Human History and the Dawning of a New Era
The Fall: The Insanity of the Ego in Human History and the Dawning of a New Era
by Steve Taylor
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.69

5.0 out of 5 stars outstanding journeys and liberations, 30 Sep 2014
Steve Taylor asks, why are we such miserable sods? No really! The world may indeed seem a consummate machinery of hell, but that's because you are seeing it wrong. Steve Taylor shows that the egoic mind is the real consummate machinery of hell and this is the real reason for our wretched state. It isn't the planet, but the thing behind our eyes, in the architecture of the brain that excretes the awareness that is responsible for our fine mess and hence his or her world; in the mental death spiral we call the human 'ego'.

Steve Taylor is an optimistic because he recognizes that the ego is responsible for our wretched state. This ego psychology frees us from the central dogma of biology because our mental disease has little to do with our genes. For years, thinkers have been looking at genetic factors or trying to fic human institutions or the studying the swing of historic forces or devising racialist theories to explain our sorry mess. Steve argues that they ignore the ego, which, if we are honest, is closer to home.

Steve Taylor is on to something here; you see, if the world really is a bad, then there isn't much we can do about it, but if it's the human ego that had gone bad, well we have can fixing it because the human brain is only the size of a bag of sugar. You could argue that only idiots believe that they can fix the planet, far better to fix the brain first.

In all his books, this is what Steve if hinting at, that its our brain that is at fault and you and I are actually better that we think we are because it is the brain that needs studying and not the world outside.

Steve Taylor, the discoverer of this hypothesis, explains our sorry state better than the orthodox evolutionary version of who we are. The orthodoxy argues that the human species is at an evolutionary peak. This terrible news because it ignores higher levels of consciousness that can be achieved by the lucky few; a higher consciousness that science denies. This is why orthodox science dismisses all phenomena that cannot fit into the skinner box of reductionist science. It is far better to recognize our badly functioning mental software, then we can fix it.

This is why we suffer with this emotional problem that won't go away. The human has been evolving in relation to this emotional problem and every human being is stuck in the doom laden mechanical world-view.

Taylor argues that the public usually sides with this gloomier, more rational side of who we are because of the obvious evidence all around. However, fish are not aware that they are emeried in water. How much would it change their perspective if they could step out of the water for a while and see that this is the box we're living?

The other, until now hidden, version of who we are, the real optimistic theory, is the idea that a real fall from a higher state of consciousness took place and thus we all fell in the ego bubble, or, as Robert Anton Wilson calls it, the reality tunnel. Steve Taylor shows the promise of getting back to the higher state of consciousness; we must first recognize our false ego, and then we can get high again, you and I, and, argues Steve Taylor, then we have a good chance of gaining her luminous summits.

The Mandukya Upanishad with Gaudapada's Karika & Sankara's Commentary
The Mandukya Upanishad with Gaudapada's Karika & Sankara's Commentary

5.0 out of 5 stars excellent pocket size edition, 30 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
If you ever read one upanishad, then this is the One! The translation is fuid and the pocket side makes this the 'on the go' book! The advaita philosophy is explained by the sage Shankara very well indeed.

Highly recommend

Mein Kampf: The Stalag Edition
Mein Kampf: The Stalag Edition
by Adolf Hitler
Edition: Paperback
Price: £16.12

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hitler in the 21st Century, 30 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This Mein Kampf: The Stalag Edition has chapter headings, unlike the Ford version, and a decent index and it isn't plastered with Nazi art work so you can read it in public!

The translations reads very smooth and the warning from the anti defamation league only tells us who is the running chicken.
The jews are not that good at public relations after all! You won't find any raving about gas ovens, up and coming angry people or all world conquest in Mein Kampf: The Stalag Edition, fortunately.

What's amazing about Mein Kampf is it is all, and I mean all, about the Jews. There is no talk about killing disabled people, creating a master race or world conquest. Zilch! It is all a war on Jews! No wonder the Jews can't stand the man.

It is all revolving around the Jews.

If you look at Europe today, and America, all the policies are the opposite of what is in Mein Kampf. Even England, during the war, was a 'monolithic' racial country, to quote Barbara Lerner Spectre, but is now racially mixed. Indeed, London is today an Asian/African city whilst Berlin is still German! Karma, anybody? Or do the Jews have a great sense of humour?

Any intelligent individual today, so intelligent individuals tell me, who reads Mein Kampf will see a pattern emerging, like looking up on a thunderous day to see the clouds emerge as a hand.

All educated people should read this. Forget the trolls.

The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion -The Great in the Small & Antichrist: The Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion
The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion -The Great in the Small & Antichrist: The Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion
Price: £0.77

5.0 out of 5 stars too outrageous to believe, too terrible to ignore!, 26 Sep 2014
Before my quick review, I just realized that the word 'Jew' or 'Zion' isn't mentioned that much, which is weird and rather than being a pointing ones finger at the Jew; these protocols are saying that the Jews are like the Gods in the Iliad; that is, Omnipotent genius' looking down on you and me! So if it is a forgery, its a pro Jew one!

Anyway, the Protocols are always mentioned in films and documentaries and so it is inevitable that we will want to see what all the fuss is about.

And as for this antisemitic thing, well people who throw out labels are doing themselves a big disservice because if the label doesn't stick, then they have explaining to do because they have exposed a big weakness in their position. It is far safer, and less embarrassing, to engage in debate than it is to name call.

Who decided to diagnose people with this psychological-syndrome in the first place?
Surely one isn't beyond redemption by studying a controversial topic? Personally, I am not an anti this or pro that and I don't think you are either, it isn't illegal to read this book, yet!

The comedian, Doug Stanhope, has a routine where he jokes that the Jews are forever reminding us of their Holocaust (spelt with a capital H) but we are not allowed to remind them that they are not like Tibetan Buddhists. If we do point out that the Jews are not helpless Tibetans, then we are diagnosed as antisemitic and thrown in the dark room of guilt and ridicule!

Personally, I ordered this book out of a curiosity and, I have to admit this, my guilty pleasure is conspiracy theories, and what a bigger conspiracy than this! I read that this book has been banned in a few countries. This is interesting. They say that much of what is contained in the Protocols have come true. Indeed, whilst reading, I thought 'so what', then I realized that it was published before the obvious stuff inside happened.

Therefore, I am amazed that what is in here has all come true. It was apparently written 10 years before the First World War. This was years before the death of Christianity in Europe, the promotion of narcissism in the culture and the dumbing down of kids (and their parents). Who could have predicted all that 10 years before the Great War?

Europe was a different place back then. In Vienna at the turn of the 20th Century, tramps would go watch a Wagner opera and in England, school examinations, for 11 year olds were on the level as today's Oxford examinations (for 21 year olds)!!! So we have become dumbed down then.

If it is forged, then the guy who forged it was a genius who could predict the future. No one has pointed this amazing fact out! Who was this genius forgery guy who knew the future then?

Now there is one other possible explanation. Maybe it is the modern versions that are re-written so they will fit the 20th Century. This is possible, tho never suggested by anybody. I reckon it is very possible indeed.

Think about it this way... This is such a hot topic and we live in the digital age and so it is very easy to re-write a document. I won't check the original. Will you be motivated to find an original copy? Let us try!

The only way to see who's lying is to find an old copy from 100 years ago and if the original copy is the same as this version, then hold on to your hats because we are in for a very bumpy ride!

The Garland of Guru's Sayings - Guru Vachaka Kovai
The Garland of Guru's Sayings - Guru Vachaka Kovai
by Sri Muruganar
Edition: Paperback

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars whoever understands these teachings will live forever, 25 Sep 2014
We all know about the supermarket of ideas and the Oprah religion. I happen to like many of the Oprah people so I'm not trying to be purposely comical for an ironic twist. I once gained some presence by listening to the audio book of Eckhart Tolle's Power of Now and I enjoy listening to the fakers on the Buddha at the Gas Pump podcast and I buy their books on Amazon.

But Barbara Ehrenreich wrote in her book that a women with terminal cancer wrote to Deepak Chopra saying that his advice about thoughts beating the cancer wasn't working. Chopra told her to carry on thinking positive! This is the kaliyuga.

I feel sorry for the masses following the false gurus. Like sharks, these predators are swimming around the dead carcass to fatten their egos and ad dividends. These rancid fakes believe in nothing and so skin the unintelligent alive. They will die, as will we all. Luckily for us, death isn't the end. However, the way it's pertinent to study Einstein to understand physics, we will benefit from studying the light when the brightness manifests in a human form. I have researched deeply and Ramana Maharshi is the candidate who shone the light of truth.
The woman with cancer needed to read this.

She needs divinity rather than dividends; moksha rather than McSpirituality because she will gain moksha; McSpirit is the illusion.

Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife
Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife
by Eben Alexander
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.79

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars !!!!!!!!!!!!WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That was Great!, 24 Sep 2014
Amid the materialist's never-ending clatter of tongues and swords and the crackling of flames, we find, just out of sight, the near death experience. The near death experience is a game changer, and it is an experience, a real experience and this is the starting point. If you cherish your materialism, then don't read this book. If you do not harbour a death wish, then this book will confirm that religious itch that you could never scratch.

It seems obvious that we live in the material world and science teaches that we are animals, obvious still, but we have an itch that we cannot scratch. This is the problem, you see. The itch is a metaphysical one, a need, if you will, a metaphysical need that will never be erased. The deeper you are in your awakening, the more you itch; it's unavoidable! You probably can't feel the itch while you're reading this, but the Buddhists say that, on your death bed, you will awaken (itch). So this is why asking spirited questions is not a sign of woo woo-ness, or flakey-ness. And although there are many flaky people out there, it is illogical to dismiss the message because the messenger is dumb. Look at it this way, how many hours a week do you waist watching music videos? If you use half those hours studying the mystery, it will not be wasted.

Therefore, the materialist and his minions (journalists and the masses) will find this book tiresomely new-age quackery, like all the other bloated New Age drek. So they will only take a glance and not bother studying what is inside. But this is only because there is New Age fog everywhere, and thus books like this will inevitably get painted with the same Oprah brush.

I too was once sceptical too. I used to think that the notion of consciousness without a brain is as nonsensical as the notion of digestion without a stomach. I mean, we need eye balls to detect the electromagnetic waves to see the world. So when I'm hovered over my dead body, I'm looking and I can detect sounds without my physical ears and see without my eyeballs. This book tackled these epistemological problems with logical rigour. So now I know how my spirit will be able to interact with light waves and atoms.

Maybe this, and not Simon Cowell, is the big antidote for our spiritually broken lives. This new science of existence is an easy morsel to digest. The soul will leave the body to holiday in an egalitarian universe; one in which all humans transcend. This is the happy ending in which you, I and the guy sweeping the streets all go to a personal afterlife. It is all in this book.

But the sceptics will say that these are just New Age elements and these elements are forever popping up in books claiming to have discovered something outside of scientific materialism. It fills the metaphysical need in all of us. This applies whether the discussion is about NDE's, UFO's, Big Foot, the paranormal, quantum gods, quantum cancer cures and my favourite, channelling a long dead politician from Atlantis! People just buy this stuff up and hungrily too, like starving ghosts, hungry for an escape from mundane reality.

It's amazing that sceptics will dismiss these experiences with the sloppy 'it's are mere hallucination'. What are hallucinations anyway? Is it the drug? How can a drug contain a Mozart symphony? The mind rests on chemicals, so is the world a hallucination too? Witnesses report images and sounds that are more real than this waking reality. They always report better than reality scenarios. Near death'ers report the most beautiful music and colours. They claim to hear intense heavenly music (the force of these symphonies brings tears to their eyes apparently), and the scientist says that it is the brain which is producing this music. But if we think about it, the person who had the Ndr is not a Mozart or a Beethoven, but he is hearing something amazing! So the obvious question is; where is the music coming from? Or, who or what is making the music in the dead womans head? Is the sound a mere hallucination? How can joe schmoll's puny brain generate a Mozart mass? This is the question. The visions near death'ers experience are more than feelings of bliss; they are full throttle cascades of shape shifting Dali dream-scapes. Visions with more beauty than any artist can create. So what is generating all this beauty and artwork in the head? Many people brought back were not artistic typse, so why would his or her brain generate a Divinity? This is similar to the old ontoloigical argument in philosophy, which asks 'how can little me experience such grand things'?

The sceptics will struggle to criticise this unique book!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 4, 2014 8:46 PM BST

The Decline of the West (Volume 1)
The Decline of the West (Volume 1)
by Oswald Spengler
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.88

1.0 out of 5 stars avoid this cheap and nasty printing like you would avoid the plague!, 22 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Avoid this terrible cheap version! Inside are typos galore and the sentences and paragraphs are scrambled. I sendt mine back to Amazon and bought an old second hand hardback.

The Bhagavad Gita: A Sublime Hymn of Dialectics Composed by the Antique Sage Bard Vyasa
The Bhagavad Gita: A Sublime Hymn of Dialectics Composed by the Antique Sage Bard Vyasa
by Nataraja Guru
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars A Gita for RIchard Dawkins!, 22 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I only stumbled on this version after reading a book by one of the Guru's disciples, Swami Muni Narayana Prasad (Karma and Reincarnation), and was so impressed by it, I ordered this Bhagavad Gita. I guess I took a gamble on the high price, but happily, this high quality hardback is worth every penny. I image many masterpieces are unknown this way.

It appears that I'm the first to review this version on the Bhagavad Gita and, very bizarrely, I can find little information on the Nararaja Guru online. When we type 'Bhagavad Gita' on Amazon, all the pop-gita's are listed. This is unfortunate and says much about the world today.

This commentary is big, very rich is learning, dense and complicated. But I suppose truth is hard for the uninitiated. This commentary is the pinnacle and feels, to me anyway, like the standard commentary to compare with the other commentaries out there. Nataraja Guru writes with a great knowing and, like the mighty Shankara, we have advaita in action (or non-action). In fact, this commentary is so good, so authoritative, and so different from all other commentaries I have read, that I am left somewhat baffled that this version is not more popular.

Nataraja Guru argues that his commentary is based on philosophy, and not theism or deism. This feels correct. Like Kant's system, a proper philosophical path, such as advaita, can show the way to the unspeakable, the ungraspable, Kant's ding an sich. Max Muller says of Kant, "While in the Veda we may study the childhood, we may study in Kant's Critique of Pure Reason the perfect manhood of the Aryan mind".

Nataraja Guru's wordview is also unique for Westerners. Not only does he know the philosophical way to be the true way to Brahman, but his honesty in translating bothering passages is somewhat refreshing too. These days, the words 'Aryan' and 'Varna' are forever translated as noble and caste. All experts agree on those two meanings. However, during the 19 Century, all experts translated those words to mean 'race' and 'colour'. Nataraja Guru even argues that Arjuna is black (I have lost the page reference). And on page 98, he even writes, "Arjuna and the women concerned here were non-Aryans". And he means non race Aryans rather than none-nobles.

An other well know teacher of vedanta, Swami Chinmayananda, says somewhere that German scholars didn't understand the sanskrit and many forums I have visited also blame the West. But here we have a genius Indian in Nataraja Guru arguing a different reason. Another swami, Swami Chibhavanda, argues in his commentary that the gunas are colors and sattvic is a white color, hence Arjuna in hindu art being white skinned. A spiritual caste sounds right.

I am not at all concerned myself, I am only pointing this out because it is interesting that identity politics is alive and well in india!

I think Nataraja Guru sees himself as a drividian. I imagined this aryan drividian split took place thousands of years ago. I really wasn't aware of the politics today. What else are we Westerners unaware of?

On page 220, there is the famous sloka with Krishna, in avatar mode, descending to fix the broken dharma. Nataraja writes, "Reference to Krishna as an avatar in the Gita would be wrong"! It is all maya in India, and this feels somewhat baffling because if even the Gods are not there, then why are you worried about politics?

If it's all maya, then space-time and cause are also maya and we are all maya. The real is called Brahman, or The Absolute or the Neumenon. But when we say 'real', we automatically attach attributes to It. But Tat is beyond Tat. But even saying 'beyond' is attaching time and space to It. All that isn't Tat is maya, including ego, life, thoughts. Hence there is no reincarnation, no soul and no rebirth. This is solid logic.

A better translation for shunya can be zero or nill because it is outside of space-time and causality.. But if there is zero or nil trace of me, because I have sank into the Ocean (another space-time bound metaphor), then why not use the word The Unnamed, the Brahaman, Nil or the Nihil? We only give It a poetic word like Brahman or The Absolute because It sounds nice. Brahmanism or Absolutism. How about nihilism? This is why advaita can be called nihilism without tears. It is nihilistic but this isn't bad because we go back to whence we game.

Nataraja Guru's explanation for sloka 6-42, about the fallen yogi being re-born into a family of yogis is very week. Even the advaitan Swami Chibhavanda hints at reincarnation in this sloka but Nataraja Guru is too hardcore and, in this passage, he reminds me of a spiritual Richard Dawkins. The passage is definitely describing reincarnation and there is no other explanation. Or the other possibility is that the Gita is flawed! You can't spin it into talking about ritual rebirth of some sort of being re-born many times through this life.

Do we have it the wrong way round about the scriptures as an authority for reincarnation? What if reincarnation was an observable truth and the ancients wrote down explanations to, well, explain what they saw, like they wrote explanations about the movement of the sun and moon? Maybe those ancient aryans, living in tightly nit communities, 6000 years ago, noticed dead children being reborn in the neighbouring tribe or in their own band of warriors, mystics and raiders.

Ian Stephenson's research, and many more reports, suggest this. This is why there is so much confusion in Bhagavad Gita commentaries. The commentators could not explain the phenomenon. If the phenomenon of reincarnation where merely wishful thinking, then why so many conflicting theories? But advaita can be too logical in denying the observable reality of things.

Advaita is indeed logical but logic may well become like geometry. For thousands of years, Euclid was the paramount truth. Now there are many geometry's. So one day, logic may we be replaced.

Anyway, I am only a few pages in and this is a big book. This Gita definitely supplies intellectual nourishment.

In Search of the Miraculous: The Definitive Exploration of G. I. Gurdjieff's Mystical Thought and Universal View (Harvest Book)
In Search of the Miraculous: The Definitive Exploration of G. I. Gurdjieff's Mystical Thought and Universal View (Harvest Book)
by P. D. Ouspensky
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.37

2.0 out of 5 stars not what I was expecting, 22 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I don't know what to make of the Ouspensky and Gurdjieff thing. I'm half way through this book so I'm only coming from this as an amateur and I'm not making claims. I have read secondary sources and chunks of Ouspensky and what I'm gathering is a system of very clever psychological and zen observations that we find in other places. There are startling things in this book, but nothing Earth shaking or original.

For example, Julian Jaynes also writes that we humans are in robot mode most of the time etc. So Gurdjieff and Ouspensky are not original on that one.

And also the law of three is not originally Gurdjieff's idea. Houston Stewart Chamberlain wrote about the law of three in his Foundations of the Nineteenth Century. And if you study indian philosophy, the three is everywhere!

So is Gurdjieff really the genius who was anticipated by all other systems, the way physics anticipated and eventually led to Einstein, or did Gurdjieff borrow from the other traditions?

The reviews for this particular book read better than the actual book! Ouspensky was a good journalist, and an obvious brain box himself, but he's not a writer and so expect to read over 300 pages of textbook writing.

Also, Ouspensky doesn't use Gurdjieff's name in this book. Instead, he writes 'G.', with the dot after the letter G, so it looks like a full stop (G.) when it isn't. So everytime you come upon the G. in the text with the dot after the G, you think a new sentence has started. This annoyed me after a while. And "G. said" "G. said" "G. said" "G. said", a dozen times on one page is grating!

In the flesh, Gurdjieff may well have been charismatic and brilliant but I didn't feel his charisma 100 years later in dull writing.

Another problem.. Ouspensky say he is writing from memory. He says here and there that he remembers another thing Gurdjieff said in the cafe etc. But memory can never be trusted like that. Memory isn't like a video that you can re-wind and view a conversation. Try rewinding your memory to this morning in the bathroom. If Ouspensky is correct, you will be able to view the tape and count your teeth. (Actually, remembering your teeth, which is an object, will be easier that remembering words because the brain latches on to objects easier. Words are fleeting and don't stick as easily and can changed in memory very easily). So it is impossible to remember deep philosophical conversations because memory is always being reconstructed in the now. So trying to remember a conversation will not work like Ouspensky reckons.

I still have huge respect for this sort of thing and these two were obviously super smart people. Ouspensky's Tertium Organum was published before he met Gurdjieff! When you read Tertium Organum, you know that Ouspensky was a genius. However, P.D. Ouspensky was dissatisfied with his immense book learning and his obviously vast genius. He wanted the experience. This is true wisdom, as all the wise know that book learning and fame will never deliver.

In Goethe's Faust, the doctor is frustrated because he realises his vast genius, his titles, and the clapping and cheering from idiots and the masses will never get him to where he wants to go. Dr Faust wants an experience, so he conjures the devil. P.D. Ouspensky is Dr Faust to Gurdjieff's Mephistopheles.

The only difference is this, Mephistopheles, if you are lucky enough to meet him, will deliver you to the promised land. G. probably won't.

The Mystique of Enlightenment: The Radical Ideas of U. G. Krishnamurti
The Mystique of Enlightenment: The Radical Ideas of U. G. Krishnamurti
by U.G. Krishnamurti
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.13

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars the nihilistic one, 22 Sep 2014
By most knowledge accounts, Ramana Maharshi was the last of the historical Buddha's, stretching back into the time of the Golden Age of history when Buddha's walked upon the planet.

What we witnessed since He discarded his mortal coil is a mad scramble to find a repeat, preferably one with good English, to sit in front of the cameras. During the 20th Century, the search for a real life god-man had begun. What we witnessed was the white man falling in love with the brown man, preferably one from India.

For the white man, any brown man with an indian accent became a god on Earth; a god whom the white flies swarmed around, hungry to meet a real Jesus or a Buddha.

Westerners would even travel to india, like one goes fishing, and bring back a brown gentleman who can babble nonsense.

I enjoy watching video's of UG Krishnamurti on You Tube. But if a white person says what UG says, no one will be interested. It is only because of his Indian accent that all those westerners sit around UG. Now try transcribing UG Krishnamurti's words onto a word software document, then his words are actually incoherent and he contradicts himself in many places.

However, such is the power of the spell that, like in the Beatles where we had the cute one and the witty one, UG Krishnamurti is the nihilistic one. Even when he said he had nothing to teach, westerners still hung on his every word! This is the power that India has on white people.

Now here is a funny example of an enlightened white man sitting whilst UG speaks. The You Tube video is with an Australian man named John Wren Lewis interviewing UG Krishnamurti. What's interesting about the interview is that John Wren Lewis became enlightened and, it is claimed, he was in the same state as Ramana Maharshi. But in the interview, it is UG Krishnamurti who wears the white robes!
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 21, 2014 4:44 PM BST

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20