Thursday, July 5, 2012

Practical's Blog Has Moved

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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Upcoming Book: Defying Newton Book Trailer


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Saturday, June 23, 2012

Book Review Part 2: A Spiritual Renegades Guide To The Good Life

So I finished reading Lama Marut’s book today, and I actually was able to meet the Lama in person between my last writing and this one.  Being that he was doing a book signing north of Boston and I live in central Rhode Island, just getting up there on a weekday afternoon posed a bit of a challenge.  Once I arrived at Cape Ann, though, I felt like I was in paradise.  Even the parking meter welcomed me with about 55 free minutes.

What I like about this book is its conversational style…you feel like you are sitting with the Lama, face to face.  It took a little bit of getting used to, at first, but I found it to be more engaging than other styles.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Music Heals the Soul

With the upcoming Col’ Areo String Quartet concert fast-approaching (July 16th), I find myself helping to promote the group as much as I can.  The main reason I help, in addition to the fact that I love Pam, is that music education is under attack right now in our schools.  Art and music are typically the first things to get cut when budgets get tight.  They are not treated as crucial parts of the core curriculum like math, science, literature, etc. are.  Instead music and art are viewed as superfluous and are downsized or eliminated to the extent the law allows.

I am presently working on a non-fiction book that analyzes why we tend to think inside the box.  While a lot of it comes from the fact that society still tends to view the universe through the eyes of Isaac Newton—like a machine rather than various forms of energy—some of it surely comes from our lack of emphasis on the arts.  It has become so extreme that many schools are considering making music and art after-school programs, which is just a stone’s throw away from eliminating them altogether.

I recently watched a video, Nurtured by Love, about Dr. Suzuki teaching hundreds of children to play in harmony.  Teachers from the US were amazed to see so many children playing completely in sync.  Dr. Suzuki, creator of the Suzuki method, had an understanding about music...but it was more than that.  He truly believed every child, and therefore every human being, as the potential to be exceptional at whatever endeavor they put their mind to.  It is with the encouragement/participation of one's family and her community that all levels of success become attainable.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Meeting Lama Marut, Author of A Spiritual Renegade's Guide To The Good Life

As you may know, we went to visit Lama Marut, author of A Spiritual Renegade’s Guide to the Good Life, yesterday afternoon.  In addition to wanting to meet the author behind the book, I also wanted to share with him the proposal for my next book, in case he could refer me to an agent or was interested in endorsing it.  He was doing a book signing in Gloucester, MA…about 2.5 hours away from where I live.  And for most Rhode Islander’s, an hour drive may as well be a trip to Europe.

So I left Warwick at about 2pm and had to decide to tackle Route 93 through the heart of Boston or take some route around it.  I grabbed the bull by the horns trying to save some time, because the Lama began the book signing at 3:30pm and I didn’t expect him to be there much after 4:30.  I got through Boston, amazingly, with only about 20 minutes delay (I had the Garmin to tell me how much time I lost).  I got off 93 and took this crazy bridge right on Route 1 connecting back into I-95.  I don’t know if it was a double-decker or what, but it sure was old.

The remaining distance slowly ticked down on the Garmin and I just kept pace with the traffic.  Soon the highway ended in a rotary and before I knew it I was on the cape.  Little shops and caf├ęs everywhere.  Garmin said I was just a block away from the “The Annie”, where the Lama was.  I pulled into a paid parking spot right on the street.  I thought, “Oh no, I don’t have any quarters!”  So I reached in my pocket and luckily found one.  I put it in the meter and saw there was already a half hour of time on the meter. What luck!  I knew I was where I was supposed to be. 

I grabbed my book proposal and walked around the corner to “The Annie”.  

It was sort of a gathering place for people that like art, music and literature.  It seemed like the kind of place where book signings occurred often.  I found the back of the line waiting to meet the Lama and jumped in.  When I got to the Lama, was very excited.  I shook his hand and told him how I loved the part of his book where he says we are in a period of great awakening and how he stated many ancient texts of Eastern religions validate this theory.  I briefly told him about my book and how it related to his.  I referred to the part in his book where he says our mindset is very limited and we need to open our minds to the spiritual side of life—one beyond 24/7 consumerism.  I told him our present mindset of doubting all that cannot be empirically proven came from the 1600’s with the success of Isaac Newton.  The philosopher Bacon and the scientist Newton strongly influenced the modern scientific method and anything that does not conform to it’s strict standards is labeled “fringe science”.

So after meeting the Lama, I had to get back home.  I selected I-95 this time since it was 5:30 pm going by Boston—rush hour.  I got back to Warwick at about 8pm and it was time to rest my bones.  It was quite the experience and I hope meeting the next author will be as rewarding as meeting the Lama was.  I’ll be able to stay in contact with him on FaceBook, we’re already friends, and will finish writing my review of his book on Amazon.

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Monday, June 11, 2012

Book Review of: A Spiritual Renegades Guide To The Good Life

I am currently reading this book and am finding Lama Marut's world view to be truly inspiring. I was so inspired that I wanted to share my thoughts in the form of a preliminary review--as I feel it is critical to capture emotions contemporaneously.

The author states that we live in a time of tremendous opportunity, a period that is not guaranteed to last long. For quite some time I have had the feeling that we are in a time of great opportunity, perhaps even approaching a Golden Age, and the author points to ancient teachings that confirm this. We have miraculous tools, like the internet, telephones, airplanes, etc., at our disposal all the time and we tend to take them for granted. We should recognize our great fortune and use these tools to grow spiritually and not be distracted by the typical drama of daily American life. We look beyond the traffic each morning, the bad tasting coffee and the pesky person at work and find a world rich in daily miracles and ready for our loving contribution.

I look forward to continue reading this book and more from this author. Hopefully I will have finished reading it by the time I update my review (unless I must give in to inspiration to update it before I finish the book).

Thank you for sharing this with us Lama Marut.
Link to book page on

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Friday, June 8, 2012

Riding The Tide Instead of Fighting It

I do think there is a sort of turning point in life—a time/place where you learn to stop fighting the tide and figure out how to ride the tide.  Good people start coming into your life without you having to search long and hard for them.  Sure you have to get off the couch a bit, but it becomes fun.

Now, more than ever, we can really see this progression.  I’m noticing on FaceBook more and more people are reaching out to me rather than the other way around.  I think it’s fascinating and it is evidence that we truly live in a Living Universe.

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