Customer Reviews


78 Reviews
5 star:
 (66)
4 star:
 (4)
3 star:
 (3)
2 star:
 (2)
1 star:
 (3)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


133 of 135 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, inspired, practical spiritual wisdom
This book is packed with profound and practical spiritual truths. Marianne Williamson is writing with deep compassion and obviously has considerable first-hand experience of the principles she's writing about.
The basic message here is that we are all perfect expressions of love, and that the energy of love and God is all there is. Anything else is an illusion. All...
Published on 24 April 2001

versus
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just Doesn't Go Deep Enough
Before I get started, I should state that I don't write this review to be judgey of the author or the lovers of this book. I believe this philanthropic woman is very sincere in trying to be truly helpful, and has been by presenting ideas that meet many people where they are at with their spirituality.

With that said, however, I don't find this to be the ideal...
Published 14 months ago by Giddy Up Mikey


‹ Previous | 1 28 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

133 of 135 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, inspired, practical spiritual wisdom, 24 April 2001
By A Customer
This book is packed with profound and practical spiritual truths. Marianne Williamson is writing with deep compassion and obviously has considerable first-hand experience of the principles she's writing about.
The basic message here is that we are all perfect expressions of love, and that the energy of love and God is all there is. Anything else is an illusion. All the judgments of oneself and others, feelings of superiority and inferiority and so on fall away if one chooses a path of unconditional surrender to God's will, that being the truth of who one is. Many practical examples of how to apply this approach are presented. I found the chapters on relationships and work particularly interesting.
As someone who struggled to get to grips with the original "A Course In Miracles" in the 1980s, I thank Marianne Williamson for giving us a more accessible version of the same powerful truths. As with the original text, some people (e.g. me!) may be a bit uncomfortable with some of the use of Christian terminology, but God and God's love are being re-defined here, in a similar fashion to Neale Donald Walsch's extraordinary "Conversations With God" books. Masterful stuff!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


74 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good introduction to A Course In Miracles, 12 Feb 2004
By 
Andrew Parodi (Oregon, United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This book is wonderful, a very gentle feeling flows throughout. I love Marianne's stories, particularly about her upbringing at the hands of an "eccentric Jewish father." "I come from a dysfunctional family," Marianne writes, "But who doesn't? This world is dysfunctional."
I have given this book as a gift twice, and I love Marianne's audio tapes upon which this book is based. Marianne Williamson is very direct and very strong. Her thinking is very clear. However, I would have to say that this book is for beginners on the path of the Course. The Course is a very demanding spirituality that makes us take stock of all our beliefs and eventually finds them to all be lacking. Further, the Course is founded on a non-dual view of God which many comment is quite similar to the Vedanta. Marianne does not tackle any of these more abstract themes of the Course in this book. The result is that the metaphysics of the Course do not always come vividly clear in this book. But that doesn't take away from the appeal of this book.
This book is very important in Course history, and the publication of this book was responsible for a 60% jump in sales of A Course In Miracles.
I had a chance to talk to Marianne Williamson after seeing her speak at a seminar a few years back, and she was very helpful in my understanding the Course. Or, rather, she helped me get to where I currently am in my study of the Course. Because the Course is a book that may ultimately be impossible for a human being to fully understand.
Some further books by Marianne Williamson that I would recommend are:
* A WOMAN'S WORTH
* THE HEALING OF AMERICA
* ILLUMINATED PRAYERS
Andrew Parodi
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the one, 3 Jan 2008
Of all the similar books you may see in the spiritual section this is the one to get. If you've ever wondered 'what it's all about?'then read this. Marianne Williamson is inspirational, not remotely soppy or 'out there', she delivers a book that you'll wish you'd read in your teens. In fact it should be part of the national curriculum!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An uplifting a wonderful book full of wisdom, 29 May 1999
By A Customer
Marianne has a wonderful way with words, her message is a powerful one and she delivers it with such love. Reading her book led me to A Course In Miracles which quite literally changed my life. Thank you Marianne.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


51 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AN Excellent Book Which Should be Read By All!!!!!, 24 April 1999
By A Customer
I am 14 and I read this book while on holiday, I had a great affect on my life and is very thought provoking! I suggest everone reads this book and takes note of what it says. Its an excellent way to look at your life and be enlightened with its words which will change your life forever.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breathtaking - A beautifully written book, 8 Jan 1999
By A Customer
This is the first book by Marianne I've read. It has had a profound effect on my life since I started reading and re-reading it. It is clearly written, so easy to read and every word touches your soul. If you have been drawn to this book then please read it, this is the book which makes sense of it all. Enjoy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


45 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars please read this book, 16 Mar 2001
By A Customer
This is one of the best books I have ever read. I believe that this is very good place to start to see things in a way that is beneficial to us rather than harmful. The message of love is really spellbinding and very beautiful. I found it moving and inspirational. I could not recommend it more.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Just Doesn't Go Deep Enough, 28 Sep 2013
By 
Giddy Up Mikey (Ashland, Oregon, USA) - See all my reviews
Before I get started, I should state that I don't write this review to be judgey of the author or the lovers of this book. I believe this philanthropic woman is very sincere in trying to be truly helpful, and has been by presenting ideas that meet many people where they are at with their spirituality.

With that said, however, I don't find this to be the ideal book to learn about A Course in Miracles. And as Jesus (or as I like call him, J-Dog) says in the Course, "Contrast and differences are necessary teaching aids, for by them you learn what to avoid and what to seek." And, "The Holy Spirit must teach through comparisons, and uses opposites to point to truth."

Now, I am certainly not saying that the author has nothing of value to say here, and that you should avoid this book. It's obviously been very helpful to many people in its own right over the years. And it could very well be exactly what you need for yourself right now. The author certainly has some good things to share. The problem with this book is that it doesn't really represent the true message of A Course in Miracles, which is referred to in the sub-title of this book.

What you really have here is a New Age/Self-Help, semi-dualistic interpretation of the Course, while the Course itself is a purely non-dualistic teaching by nature, meaning that God is and nothing else is. The Return to Love book speaks on the same level as the popular New Age authors whose books I studied in the mid 1990s through early 2000s, most notably Wayne Dyer and Neale Walsch. For me personally, I got to the point on my spiritual path where I outgrew that level of teaching just as everyone else will (or has) at some point. This level of teaching simply just doesn't go deep enough, even if it appears to be very enlightening.

Thus that leads to the other big problem with this book, from A Course in Miracles perspective, is that what the author has to say is geared towards changing the conscious mind and not addressing the unconscious mind, which is what REALLY runs us. Changing the conscious mind will only have a temporary, helpful impact at best. Like most of the iceberg is underneath the surface of the ocean, you can't see it; most of the mind is out of our awareness. But there is a way to get in touch with it, but you won't find that way in this book. And I know for me personally, I didn't make serious progress on my spiritual path until I started addressing the unconscious part of my mind.

On a level that we are not consciously aware of, we have this guilt buried in the mind over the seeming separation from God, what the Course refers to as the "blocks to the awareness of love's presence," and "the secret sins and hidden hates" which we must undo via the true forgiveness process outlined in the Course in order to really be free. As the Course states, "Of one thing you were sure: of all the many causes you perceived as bringing pain and suffering to you, your guilt was not among them." This unconscious guilt shows up to us symbolically in the form of all our negative emotions.

The author does talk about the importance of forgiveness, however, there is no real explanation as to what true forgiveness entails, and HOW to apply it in whatever comes up in front of your face on any given day. And leaving out the fact that all our problems are symbolic of the seeming separation from God, "A sense of separation from God is the only lack you really need correct." So the Course teaches that, "Forgiveness is the only function meaningful in time." And, "The way to God is through forgiveness here. There is no other way."

Another thing going on here with this book is that the author uses terms such as "energy"; "consciousness"; "vibration"; and such, making them out to be important and real. However, the Course says of such ideas that they are "...the domain of the ego." The Course also teaches that there is no hierarchy of illusions, "All that a hierarchy of illusions can show is preference, not reality."

Also, the author talks about God in a way that implies that God acknowledges our individual lives here on earth, and that God and the "power of the universe" are one and the same. The author even has prayers in the book that begin with "Dear God." Yet the Course teaches, "The secret of true prayer is to forget the things you think you need."

And according to the Course, there is no world, so how could God acknowledge anything happening in the world, when there isn't one. A pretty far out idea for many, I grant you that, but that is what the Course is teaching and NOT what the author is writing about in this book. And the Course doesn't just say that there is no world. It says, "There is no world! This is the central thought the Course attempts to teach." And, "Whatever is true is eternal and cannot change or be changed." The universe, therefore, is obviously not true, not of God, and has no power. The Course also says, "The world you see is an illusion of a world. God did not create it, for what He creates must be eternal as Himself. Yet there is nothing in the world you see that will endure forever."

There's barely any mention about going Home in this book, which is what the Course is ultimately all about. Even in the section called Heaven's Gate, the author goes on a political spiel instead, making the world out to be something that needs to be fixed. Yet the Course teaches that the world cannot be fixed, "There is no point in trying to change the world. It is incapable of change because it is merely an effect. But there is indeed a point in changing your thoughts about the world. Here you are changing the cause. The effect will change automatically." And the Course teaches, "This is a course in cause and not effect."

So there is no explanation on what it means to go Home, and how to go about doing that. And as the Course says, "This world you seem to live in is not home to you. And somewhere in your mind you know that this is true." And, "This world is not where you belong. You are a stranger here. But it is given you to find the means whereby the world no longer seems to be a prison house or jail for anyone." So you won't be finding the way to return to where you really belong through this book, at least not by taking it at face value. You're likely to be left with the idea it's about making your life better rather than awakening from what you think of as your life. And there's no mention of our lives being self-predetermined. Like the Course teaches, "The secret of salvation is but this: that you are doing this unto yourself."

Furthermore, there's no mention of how time and space is adjusted by the Holy Spirit and disappears for us as we perform a miracle, a miracle meaning that we apply forgiveness on whatever comes up in front of our faces on any given day. "When you perform a miracle, I will arrange both time and space to adjust to it." And, "The miracle shortens time by collapsing it, thus eliminating certain intervals within it."

The author also implies that our uniqueness, individual identity is something to be valued. Yet with the final destination of the Course being the return to Oneness, you can't have both Oneness and individual identities; it's impossible. And the Course teaches, "Forgiveness is the end of specialness." And, "You can defend your specialness, but never will you hear the Voice for God beside it."

I understand, and this is perfectly ok, that very few are ready for the real message of A Course in Miracles which is why there are so many mis-interpretations of the Course out there such as this one. The real message is just too threatening for one's ego for most people at this point in time, including many who consider themselves to be spiritually progressive when they are actually rather conservative. So, it's just a matter of what you're ready to accept, nothing wrong with that, but people shouldn't confuse this book as being the same as the Course.

Don't get me wrong, I do feel that this is a good book for people wanting to investigate new ideas and break free from the thinking of the world and the confines of organized religion, or perhaps for people who struggle with low self-esteem; this would certainly be a step in the right direction. But this book is more about "don't die with an unmet potential" or "live life to the fullest" or "become a better human" kind of a book; certainly nothing wrong with that. However, Return to Love leaves much to be desired if you're looking for a clear explanation on what A Course is Miracles is really all about; you'll just end up confused and conflicted because it's not consistent with the Course, even if you're not consciously aware of it.

Just from the Introduction piece alone the author states, "Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we have learned here." And, "We came here to co-create with God by extending love." Well, if we didn't have fear, we would not have been born into this world to begin with. In fact, the Course says, "The world was made as an attack on God. It symbolizes fear." So we're not here to co-create with God, we're not really here, we need to awaken from the belief that we are here and return to where we are a co-creator with God and the same as God, by removing the "blocks to the awareness of love's (God's) presence" via the true forgiveness process.

So if you are indeed looking for a book that puts A Course In Miracles into the everyday vernacular, without compromising on the integrity of its message, I would highly recommend The Disappearance of the Universe: Straight Talk about Illusions, Past Lives, Religion, Sex, Politics, and the Miracles of Forgivenessby Gary Renard. It explains A Course in Miracles like nothing else does, and is the only book (along with his follow up book, Your Immortal Reality: How to Break the Cycle of Birth and Death) I've ever read on spirituality that made total sense to me from cover to cover, and left me with no unanswered questions.

Gary's books are the real deal when it comes to the Course, you many not like everything said, and it may downright piss you off, but you will get the straight up truth, no sugarcoating, and no being told what you necessarily want to hear. Like it states, "As with Jesus' teachings of 2,000 years ago, the world is attempting to do its usual job of obliterating the truth by incorporating parts of it into its illusions and covering over the real message of the Holy Spirit. We won't leave out the ideas you don't like. If you resist them or don't want to accept them after you hear them then that's your decision, but at least it won't be because you weren't told."

Giddy up!

~ Mike Lemieux, author of Dude, Where's My Jesus Fish?: A Compilation Highlighting the Blunt and Uncompromising Teachings of Arten and Pursah on A Course in Miracles
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wondeful book with a simply wonderful message, 14 Jan 1999
By A Customer
I enjoyed this book very much. The book is well written and clearly communicates the message it contains, which I suspect is going to be slightly different for each reader. It made me laugh and it made me cry but most of all it made me realise that we are all meant to be happy. This book was a gift from a special friend and I have since bought it as a gift for others, what more can I say.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Superb Book, 7 Sep 2009
I am not sure one could just read this book without any preparation. I have been reading and listening to thinkers who choose to extract, to write about and to live the essence of Eastern thoughts and religions together with the essence of our montheistic religions. The likes of Alan Watts, Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, ....., for quite some time. Thus I was quite ready to get closer to "The Course of Miracles", which is what Marianne's book is all about. I drank each page with delight and awe....this is my Truth, without any doubt. It is what I have yearned to hear and connect to and with, since I was a child, as opposed to organised religions, which never spoke to me. This is a book I keep close to me and re-open randomly on a very regular basis. It always opens on the right page....when the student is ready, the teacher appears.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 28 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Only search this product's reviews