Tuesday, April 20, 2021
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Music Reviews

Dr. Rudy Scarfalloto: The Dance of Opposites

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Author: Dr. Rudy Scarfalloto (@)
Title: The Dance of Opposites
Format: Paperback
Rated: * * * * *

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Dr. Rudy Scarfalloto is both a chiropractor and anatomy instructor at ASHA massage school. In his book, The Dance of Opposites (previously published under the title The Alchemy of Opposites), he expresses some rather profound yet obviously simplistic truths. On one level Dr. Rudy’s words express ways individuals can overcome depression, anger, fears, anxiety, addiction, and learn to have healthy relationships. On another level he expresses profound mystic wisdom. The Dance of Opposites helps us change our dualistic paradigm and learn to see the world not as a grocery list of paired and opposing views but instead helps us learn integration of all dualistic opposites in the effort to live more fully and holistically. I know this may sound like the typical self-help drivel but I assure you it is not. This book does not waste time with antics nor systems’. This book gets at what is at the very heart of our existence as human beings. The Dance of Opposites works on many levels. Some may not want to put it down once it is taken up as the information is so clear that you will find yourself wondering why you had not thought of things this way before, it seems so obvious. Also, it is very useful as a daily tool for personal growth and meditation. I personally found it very useful to read small sections at a time to let it gestate and give my psyche something to ponder through the day or week while I am busy with other studies. This can also turn out to be very synchronistic. I have also spent the past few years studying a wide range of mysticism, psychology, and spirituality literature and Dr. Rudy just lays it all out in simple terms in black and white. One of the students that attended ASHA said that she actually considers this book to be her new "Bible" and I can see why. While it may sound blasphemous to some at first, I challenge you to compare the wisdom in this book to any standard "religious" text. You will find that scholars are still trying to guess at the intended meanings of the religious books while The Dance of Opposites is understandable to anyone with even a low education yet possibly more profound. There is also a companion to this book called 90 Days of Inner Integration which I’ve not had the time to peruse fully yet but I can only imagine the transformative processes it could create in the common individual. Dr. Scarfalloto does not hold back with his writing either, he instead bears all by revealing some of his own personal growth experiences, even those that may seem controversial. Knowing him personally, in the class room setting at least, he is a most respectable being and wise beyond what he reveals publicly. The ideas in this book can definitely be life changing for most. It does not matter if you are Agnostic or Christian or anything in-between. This book can change the way you view the world around you in such magnificent ways. You may even find you enjoy life much more!


Samuel Morningstar: Shadow Kingdom

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Author: Samuel Morningstar (@)
Title: Shadow Kingdom
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Lulu
Distributor: Lulu
Rated: * * * * *

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Samuel Morningstar (rocker, mystic, author), has finally released a novel that has been highly anticipated by those who knew this was coming and what it might be about. Shadow Kingdom combines elements of a psychological thriller, crime investigation, horror, esoteric mysticism, and "sci-fi" to create the world which contains the events which unfold in his tale. The characters are humans, rock stars, soldiers, martial artists, cops, angels & demons, monsters, and extraterrestrials to name a few. The story begins with a private investigator hired to research the brutal ritual murder of an exotic dancer and takes us into a realm of wonders and nightmares beyond the realm of sanity and into conspiracies involving ancient immortals. Buth this sort of thing could never happen in "reality" as this is just a creative work of fiction right, or could it? Samuel created his dark fiction from the real life research of minds like David Icke, Whitley Strieber, and William Henry. I've never in my life read a fiction novel with so much truth and so many questions. I say truth because the esoteric principles conveyed within are the same as those taught in mystery schools the world over and throughout history. Samuel Morningstar is an intellect of unusual talent that makes great story tellers like Clive Barker look like child's play! He's also a talent in the music industry and member of the band Eternal Twilight and knows the rock scene well. This book will appeal to anyone interested in Ancient History, Mythology, Esoteric Mysticism, UFOlogy, Conspiracy Theories, Rock-n-Roll (including the Goth subcultrure), Martial Arts, Meditation, "Energy" Work, Dark Fiction, and Horror - a thinking person's fiction.


Yogananda, Paramahansa: Autobiography of a Yogi

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Author: Yogananda, Paramahansa
Title: Autobiography of a Yogi
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Self-Realization Fellowship (@)
Rated: * * * * *

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Recognized as one of the greatest emissaries to the West of India's ancient wisdom, Paramahansa Yogananda was commissioned by his master Swami Sri Yukteswar to bring these teachings from India to America. Yogananda emphasized the underlying unity of the world's great religions, and taught universally applicable methods for attaining direct personal experience of God with an emphasis on Kriya Yoga. This book outlines the life story of this great teacher and how he came to be known to the West. There is much in this book that is useful to the student of esoteric wisdom and spirituality and I highly suggest anyone reading this book who plans on becoming a serious student pay close attention to the words and teachings from the wisdom of Swami Sri Yukteswar. Though Yogananda has moved from this physical plane to the next in 1952 his loving-kindness and teachings of God-Illumination continue to this day through the school he founded known as Self-Realization Fellowship headquartered in Los Angeles, California. This book is highly recommended for any student of spirituality!


Demetra George: Mysteries of the Dark Moon

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Author: Demetra George
Title: Mysteries of the Dark Moon
Format: Paperback
Publisher: HarperSanFrancisco
Rated: * * * * *

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The Dark Moon, in relation to the Cycle of Life (birth, life, death, rebirth) is that period between death and rebirth. This book is divided into three main sections; Revisioning the Dark, Goddesses of the Dark Moon, & Rites of Rebirth. In the first section the Dark Moon is explained in relation to the phases of the moon and it's symbolic representations in our lives. This may be a transitional stage in your life or it may simply be a 'trying' time in your life. Either way it is the mark of a significant stage in your growth of some sort. Next we discuss the Dark Goddess and the mythic representations. To understand this section there is much said about the Triple Goddess as this is very relevant to this aspect. A strong aspect of this is our fear of death and how this affects our psyche. When we have reached the topic of Healing The Dark we are to learn how we can use these occurances and experiences in our lives to benefit our personal growth. "The images of the Dark Goddess and her associations with the dark moon teachings that exist within the collective unconscious also exist within the personal unconscious of each of us." From the start of the reading you will very soon realize that the subject matter, though psychological, requires the use of mythic imagery to explain in detail the point at hand. "The mystery of the Dark Moon Goddess is that death and birth are the twin faces of her cosmic orgasm with the Sun God each month at the new moon conjunction. Fulfilled in love, she then circles, ever turning around the earth, and sends forth a shower of blessings with the knowledge that there is no annihilation." An interesting section is the Lunar Her/Story of the Feminine. This examines history and various religious/mythic structures throughout and how civilizations viewed the divine. It displays a birth, death and rebirth of feminine theology as well. This, of course eventually takes you into mention of the current "Age of Aquarious" which many have predicted in which we currently live. From here it discusses the rebirth of Goddess Spirituality. The second section on the Goddesses first discusses the guardians of the unconscious. For it is these Dark Goddesses which are the archetypes for our unsconscious minds. To understand them is to better understand the inner workings of our own minds and spirits. There is a focus here on Nyx, Medusa and Lilith. In the Rites of Rebirth we are shown how renewal and rebirth can occur. There is much mention here regarding menstrual cycles which may turn some men off but for anyone interested in the divine feminine this analogy is synonymous with these cycles. These cycles are discusses from the feminine perspective and introduce us to the Blood Mysteries and bring us through life to menopause. Keep in mind that these are symbolic and used with mythic symbology as well. We are then taken into the rites of initiation, something sorely missing from modern culture, and how this was used to bring individuals through various stages. Symbolically you will see the journey to the underworld by goddesses like Persephone and Inanna to be key in initiation ritual. Finally we reach the Healing Power of the Lunar Darkness. This is the process of transformation. Personally I found much of the general psychology in the book very closely related to those I had personally experienced in the late 1980's when I was fully in my Gothic stage of growth. For these Dark Mysteries are truly something that we should all learn from. It would also help us all to view the world and our existence in it in a new and wondrous light. If you are wanting to conquer your own fears, whether they be of death or other things, this is a good book to read to aide you in your search and to guide you to the release of unfounded fears.


Gail Wood: Sisters of the Dark

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Author: Gail Wood
Title: Sisters of the Dark
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Llewellyn Publications
Rated: * * * * *

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What I liked about Gail's books was the way she discussed the Dark Goddess' many aspects using the zodiac symbology and how she connected them in stages and elements. She took a set of each element in a 'minor' stage and then the second group in the 'mid' stage and the third grouping in the 'full' stage and associated these also with Maiden, Mother, and Crone. I also enjoyed her meditations and the statements of ritual purpose as well as the associations of a different God and Goddess archetype for each. I even liked her unique use of Arachne as a tie-in and a summation of sorts of the sequence. I think she should have made a stronger clarification that Arachne is used only symbolically as a 'spirit' sign as I think the mere mention of the reference to Arachne as a 13th sign or Vogh's book only makes her work look uninformed as Vogh's book was not to be taken seriously as he has self-proclaimed. However, I do think Arachne is the appropriate archetypal tie-in for the completion of this work as the Weaver. What I did not like about this book is redundancy regarding the rituals. Personally I'd prefer someone say here's the basic structure and just substitute this or that in whichever placement for each aspect rather than write repeatedly the evokation of the elements etc.. However, I will admit I can see her point for doing so in that there are subtle differences in each and it is nice to have the entire ritual in one place when you actually want to use the book as a quick reference. The other thing I did not like about this book is that while I'm all for women's empowerment and I like much of Starhawk's writings myself I find it arrogant and assuming to write everything as if only women would be interested in these works. There is nothing wrong with men exploring the Dark Goddess as well as women and the author does mention a time or two items such as 'if you are a man performing this' but there are times where she seems to forget that she may actually have a male audience and one that is not afraid of their feminine side at that. However, while parts of the book may 'seem' to be written for women alone, the entire work is usable by both genders. Overall I think it's a decent work that could have been elaborated on much more but works as a rather simple basis with a good and insightful start as people are only recently becoming more aware of and accepting of the darker aspects of paganism and of their own psyche's.