Book review: Waiting for Autumn

 Lack of challenge softens spiritual fable’s impact

Waiting for Autumn spiritual fiction metaphysical novel visionary fictionRating: 4 1/2  out of 5 stars

Well-written and insightful, “Waiting for Autumn” is an inspirational fable full of wisdom and spiritual adventure. However, the path to enlightenment seems almost too easy.

Story: In the tradition of the bestseller Eat, Pray, Love and spiritual classics such as The Alchemist, Way of the Peaceful Warrior, and The Celestine Prophecy, Waiting for Autumn is an enchanting semiautobiographical parable that reveals a deep and powerful message. This book follows Scott, an inquisitive seeker who meets a mysterious cardboard-sign-toting homeless man named Robert who has a sleepy black Lab puppy at his side and a penchant for changing lives. Sparked by Robert’s unconventional wisdom, Scott is thrust into a spiritual adventure where he attempts to heal his past while confronting the spirit of his dead fiancée. He ultimately faces an extraordinary dilemma between his spiritual calling and earthly responsibilities. (from Amazon.com)

Spiritual/metaphysical content: High. Robert, a walk-in, appears just as Scott is on the verge of a spiritual awakening (although he doesn’t know it) to guide him through the process. He retrieves a piece of his soul that was lost at the death of another and reconnects to his soul family via a “constellation,” a supportive group that helps him discover his spirit guide.

Robert introduces a wonderful world where fairies masquerade as dragonflies, and Scott experiences the power of lunar energy and a musical kirtan. He embarks on a vision-quest through dreams, and he shares some practical tips on lucid dreaming,

Recognizing that the physical senses let in only a fraction of the world, Scott prefers living in the spirit plane where he has more freedom.  He begins spending more and more time in a dream state, conjuring up old memories and changing them into positive ones. He discovers he is a powerful healer on the spirit plane, spending so much time healing souls in that dimension that he almost totally neglects his  body in the physical dimension. Eventually he must choose between the two dimensions.

Scott learns that evil exists after being swept up–literally–in a cyclone of dark energy from a negative energy portal. Robert teaches him how to shield himself energetically. This evil, says Robert, tries to stop powerful individuals from “bringing more light into the world.” The author expresses some ambivalence toward evil; some characters believe in dark entities, but some don’t.

My take: This spiritual fable beautifully demonstrates the profundity of being fully present. Blum has a lot of wisdom to share, such as “Fill your heart with ‘Yes’ and you will make the right decision,” and “Religion is the knowledge of truth. Spirituality is the wisdom of truth.”

Deftly written and a fast read, Waiting for Autumn is a fine example of a seeker who quickly masters the path to enlightenment with the help of a mentor, along the lines of Dan Millman’s Way of the Peaceful Warrior and Robin Sharma’s The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari, and a plot twist nicely resolves this well-told tale.  It’s interesting to read about someone who reaches fulfillment so quickly, but it’s also a bit disingenuous that everything comes so easily to Scott. It makes enlightenment seem simple,  a matter of just meeting the right people to help you along the way. Life rarely proceeds in such a clear, satisfying line.

Details:
Waiting for Autumn, by Scott Blum
Hay House, 2009
Hardcover, 210 pages
Buy at Amazon

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