Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Substance abuse continues to be a disastrous consequence of stress and pain, especially those experienced in the early years of one’s life. In her recent book Alive (Infinity Publishing, 2008), Eileen P. DeClemente has revealed intriguing connections between childhood traumas, familial stress, and addiction to alcohol and drugs. Starting with her collapse in her mid 30s, Eileen tells an aching tale of her journey through several years of alcohol and drug abuse. After surviving a number of near-death situations, she decided to put an end to her sufferings by seeking professional treatment. Her narrative keeps the reader glued to the pages of her book, till the very end.

Eileen’s depiction of the alcoholic’s angst carries the reader away not only by its openness and poignant honesty, but more so by her analysis of familial relationships and their interplay with substance abuse. An alcoholic/druggie not only loses control of his/her freedom of choice but is also robbed of his/her social life. For Eileen, it was not less than a miracle to come out of the extremes of substance abuse (over 90 pills a day) and live a normal life again.

Alive is an exemplary work of personal encounter with alcoholism and drug abuse. Eileen’s life story is alarming, mesmerizing, and didactic; at the same time inspirational, motivating, and full of hope for all people who are suffering from some form of debilitating stress in their lives. There are some typos in the book – the only thing that may be regarded as the book’s weakness (and one can point to the publisher only). However, the author’s magic hardly allows one’s attention to be distracted. Alive is just what the doctor ordered; a book for everyone including the teenage population.

ISBN: 0-7414-4578-6

Book Website: http://eileenisalive.com/

The Genie in Your Genes

To counter the invasive nature of allopathic therapeutic techniques, currently forming the bulk of mainstream treatment, alternate healing experts are knuckling down on scientific research that validates non-invasive, simpler, safer, and less expensive treatment methods. Part of the groundbreaking work in this direction comes from Dawson Church, founder of the Soul Medicine Institute (SMI) – a nonprofit education and research institute that focuses on consciousness and energy as primary modalities. In his recent book The Genie in Your Genes: Epigenetic Medicine and the New Biology of Intention (Elite Books, California, 2007), Dawson Church probes into the complex processes that switch on, or turn off, the genes in our bodies, a process that determines whether or not certain healing responses will be triggered. The pages of the book are filled with some of the most amazing findings on genes and illnesses, and their connection with the flow of electromagnetic energy in the body.

To date, mainstream science and popular media have convinced every second person that our biochemistry is mostly determined at birth and that allopathic treatment therapies are the most reliable and effective means of coping with diseases. The Genie in Your Genes challenges this view in a radical manner and underscores the importance of our beliefs and emotions as the dominant factors in determining our physiochemical as well as genetic framework. A simplified version of the author’s view can be created by thinking of psychological states – beliefs, emotions, and intentions etc – as directly affecting the flow of electromagnetic energy in our bodies. This energy has the ability to switch on (or off) particular genes as well as trigger the release of biochemical substances in the body that are important for quick and long-term relief from diseased symptoms. Such changes that start outside the DNA (i.e. epigenetic changes) are even heritable and, if adequately manipulated, have the potential of producing a healthier and peaceful generation of human beings. An amazing implication of epigenetic medicine!

Dawson Church is certainly not excessively critical of allopathic medicine. He acknowledges the use of such treatment in bringing relief from painful symptoms of certain conditions. But given the many adverse effects of allopathic treatments, their invasiveness and low effectiveness in many cases, and their high costs and many risks, he proposes that allopathic treatment should be the last resort of patients, not the priority. Explaining the simple, easy, and cost-free techniques of energy healing, Dawson Church equips the readers with some effective, quick-healing techniques that provide instance relief from stress and associated physical symptoms. The exciting research studies discussed in the book are fully referenced and a list of useful sources of information on energy healing is there for interested readers to consult. The Genie in Your Genes is yet another landmark publication on the subject of epigenetic processes, energy healing, and the biological changes resulting from non-physical stimuli.

ISBN: 978-1-60070-022-4


Award-winning author Herbert Lobsenz has returned to the publishing world with his latest novel Succession (Zumaya Publications, 2008), the story of an aspiring writer, Jake Garrison, who finds himself in the alienating corporate world of the 1960s’ America. While Jake struggles to hold on to his sanity amidst the materialistic pressures of his workplace, the inner conflict with his doubts over his wife’s fidelity and his own integrity silently push him to the darkness of distrust. Only later would he realize that his response to the antagonist forces was overly fueled by his deep-seated fears.

Lobsenz creates an intriguing story for his book. His construction of the plot is compact and somewhat intricate; more poised on the side of the corporate mania rather than the main character’s personal development. There are some weaknesses in the book that may distract an average reader from getting the most of its pleasure and gist. The story takes a sharp start with a captivating hook but soon looses the balance of Jake’s character and, at times, Jake becomes almost non-existent in the plot. Lack of continuity in the story and a rushed conclusion interfere with the novel’s impact as something enjoyable with a clear meaningful message.

On the positive side, Succession opens up a window of thought against the senseless world of business where one has to tread one’s kind, even one’s own friends and family, for making profit. Jake’s watchword ‘never show pain’ is a manifestation of the fears associated with the race for survival in the ever-tightening capitalist society. On the whole, Succession is a poignant and disturbing book, recommended only for a limited audience i.e. men who can enjoy a tale of the business world back in the 1960s.

ISBN: 978-1-934135-81-5