The Spiritual Element

The broad disciplines of science, religion and philosophy have more tributaries than an arterial river, and I borrowed from a good many of their sage teachings to form the rationales contained in Spinning for Jacks.

I’ve attempted, in this novel, to use the story of a teenage boy’s coming-of-age journey as a platform to explore the mystery of existence, in a way that (hopefully) makes it more entertaining and easier to digest than some of the non-fiction texts on the subject. Of course, one novel can only scratch the surface but it’s the common threads I was most interested in; those parallels drawn from different quarters and cultural traditions. These bases of consensus among wisdoms must surely be the most reliable pointer towards the ultimate truth.

Unfortunately, this message is often lost when fundamentalist factions each proclaim their version of the truth is absolute, and commit violence and intolerance on any opposing interpretation. And while it’s wise to be wary of the seeming commercial bent of much of the spiritual or self-improvement industry, equally it is small-minded to accept that only science can provide the pathway to understanding. To find what truly resonates, I suggest reading widely, then finding a quiet place to listen to what the Watcher has to say. Preferably by a river…

The following is a much abbreviated list but it contains a few of the resources I found particularly inspiring. I don’t claim to agree with all that these authors have to say, or even understand it all for that matter. Likewise, my interpretation of their words may not reflect their intentions so I’m not suggesting they would necessarily endorse my conclusions. What follows is simply a few books that resonated with me and helped me to develop an awareness that the world defined by our physical senses is only a version of how things really are:

  • A Brief History of Time – by Stephen Hawking
  • Science and the Akashic Field – An Integral Theory of Everything – by Ervin Laszlo
  • The Field – by Lynne McTaggart
  • Life After Death – The Book of Answers – by Deepak Chopra
  • A New Earth – by Eckhart Tolle
  • The Answer – by John Assaraf and Murray Smith
  • The Universe in a Single Atom – by The Dalai Lama
  • The Master Key System – by Charles F Haanel
  • The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying – by Sogyal Rinponche
  • Handbook to Higher Consciousness – by Ken Keyes, Jr
  • A Short History of Nearly Everything – by Bill Bryson