James Allen (1864-1912) was the author of some 20 books on the subject of self-improvement, the most famous of which is his short treatise on the power of thought, As a Man Thinketh. In his larger works, Allen described in greater detail the processes by which that state of transcendent satisfaction, which he presented as the true goal of human existence, can be reached.
From Poverty to Power was published in two parts, the first dealing with the road to prosperity and the second the state of peace that ensues when it has been realized. In the foreword, the author described his aim as follows: "I dreamed of writing a book which should help men and women, whether rich or poor, learned or unlearned, worldly or unworldly, to find within themselves the source of all success, all happiness, all accomplishment, all truth".
Part I: The Path to Prosperity; The Lesson of Evil; The World a Reflex of Mental States; The Way out of Undesirable Conditions; The Silent Power of Thought: Controlling and directing One's Forces; The Secret of health, Success, and Power; The Secret of Abounding Happiness; The Realization of Prosperity
Part II: The Way of Peace; The Power of Meditation; The Two Masters, Self and Truth; The Acquirement of Spiritual Power; The Realization of Selfless Love; Entering into the Infinite; Saints, Sages, and Saviors: The Law of Service; The Realization of Perfect Peace
Public Domain (P)2016 Denis Daly
Before listening to this delightful audiobook I wasn’t very familiar with James Allen. I had occasionally seen him mentioned as one of the early writers of self-help books. But that characterization doesn’t do justice to Allen’s profound philosophy of life, which he methodically explains in From Poverty to Power. Many of the thoughts Allen expounds in this book are reminiscent of Buddhism’s Four Noble Truths, and the text draws on Buddhist sources in addition to Hindu texts, the Gospels and Western spiritual and philosophical traditions. Denis Daly’s engaging and penetrating narration creates a quite transformative listening experience, and though Allen wrote From Poverty to Power in 1901, Daly consistently makes the text relevant to 21st century listeners by bringing out the empathy, compassion and kindness which is at the heart of the text. The narrator and the author seem to forge a symbiotic relationship in this audiobook, with Denis Daly powerfully conveying a sense of being in James Allen’s presence, hearing Allen himself inspire friends and colleagues with his message of peace and inner prosperity.
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