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50 Life Lessons by Suma Varughese
I purchased the 50 Life Lessons book out of hunch at the AH Wheeler shop at Allahabad (now renamed, Prayagraj). I was visiting that shop after a long time and just wanted to buy a good book as a memorabilia during the vacation trip. Books can now be easily obtained online, and my preference is for ebooks, because of flexibility in carrying and ability to increase font size.
As more time was spent on discussing books whose presence delighted my daughter, for myself, I chose this book at the last moment before leaving the shop. I was attracted to the title and the cover and didn’t really look at the details. Daughter got her books, and this 50 Life Lessons was mine.
When I finally got to see the book, I was immensely happy to find that it came recommended by Sister Shivani (of Brahma Kumaris) who is a great preacher and healer of India.
The spiritual dimension of life woven in subtle, effective ways throughout the book is soul-nourishing.BK Shivani in Foreword to 50 Life Lessons
Besides, the author herself is a former editor of the magazine Life Positive, and the book is published by Hay House which is famous for publishing quality self-help and spiritual books.
(Incidentally, Louise Hay, the founder of Hay House, happens to be a favorite author of mine, though I still haven’t reviewed any of her books, except create a web story on The Power is Within You)
The Book: Various Life Lessons
This is a wonderful book to say the least. In fact, through life, I’ve had certain experiences and certain conclusions that this book validates in a remarkable manner! Maybe, when we get perspectives in life through our various processes of life events, heart aches, failures, and griefs, our consciousness seem to be moving in the same spiritual direction that have universal attributes.
We carry only two things with us: our psyche or character which is the sum total of the work we have done on ourselves, and our relationships.Suma Varughese, 50 Life Lessons
The author has spread her learning across fifty life lessons and interspersed all of this with her own life experiences.
I realised that in the seeking game there were no deadlines to meet, no targets to achieve, no competition to beat. I simply had to do my best, moment to moment…Suma Varughese, 50 Life Lessons
The book has many excellent insights to various aspects of life.
To take one that is often confusing is the position on emotions. There is even this ancient philosophical school of “Stoicism” whose fundamental premise is to hide and suppress our feelings and emotions. All books that I’ve come across speaks in a way of having a control on our emotions or to not display them or to manage them. Even Bhagwad Gita speaks of reason as the highest faculty of human beings.
This is the first book that prides itself in the depths of feeling and the emotional being.
…being emotional has a wealth of advantages that the rational thinker cannot even conceive of, give thanks for the invaluable capacity to feel that enables life to be so much more multi-dimensional than it may appear to the overly rational. The present crisis of modern life is caused by an excess of head thinking and not enough heartfulness.Suma Varughese, 50 Life Lessons
It is quite interesting that while the whole spiritual area is about unconditional love, kindness, compassion – all attributes of the heart, yet when it comes to life, people tend to ignore it in name of practicality and prefer to climb on the rocky surfaces of heartless and cold decisions made on the probabilities of logic, reason and rationality of calculations and profits.
This book dissects the various aspects of Karma and explains them in an easy to understand manner. Our own connection of understanding ourselves – the soul/spirit, and its wider connection to the people and the nature around us, and ultimately the all encompassing connection to the universal spirit. In its wide strokes through nuggets of life, it deals with subjects like empathy and compassion.
Many gems in this book can be understood only through experience. While reading certainly gives an awareness, unless the reader has been through the spin of life and survived all those moments, the insights to life written in this book may not always be appreciated or understood – in fact some of the life-lessons mentioned may even be considered as impractical or simply idealistic.
Overall an excellent book to have and read! Highly recommended.