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Alexandra Hopkins

  • 46
  • reviews
  • 129
  • helpful votes
  • 75
  • ratings
  • What Is Real?

  • The Unfinished Quest for the Meaning of Quantum Physics
  • By: Adam Becker
  • Narrated by: Greg Tremblay
  • Length: 11 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 271
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 232
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 227

Every physicist agrees quantum mechanics is among humanity's finest scientific achievements. But ask what it means, and the result will be a brawl. For a century, most physicists have followed Niels Bohr's Copenhagen interpretation and dismissed questions about the reality underlying quantum physics as meaningless. A mishmash of solipsism and poor reasoning, Copenhagen endured, as Bohr's students vigorously protected his legacy, and the physics community favored practical experiments over philosophical arguments.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Good, "light" "read"... potential caveat below...

  • By James S. on 03-31-18

Best book yet on foundations of quantum mechanics

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-19-19

I've read/listened to several books on the implications of quantum mechanics (QM) for the nature of reality. This is the best yet. The author, Adam Becker, is an astrophysicist, and knows his quantum physics. Yet, he is able to make the issues quite understandable to me, and I don't know the math of QM. I am familiar with the concepts. This is not a book for learning the concepts of QM; it's for someone who's already done quite a bit of study. (I'd suggest starting with biographies of quantum physicists and Youtube videos for laypeople).

This is a history of the Copenhagen Interpretation and two alternative interpretations--Bohmian and Many Worlds. Becker sees the issues clearly, more clearly than any other author that I've read. He cleared up for me things that I had found puzzling in the debates about foundational issues. Like that the Copenhagen Interpretation originally held that QM doesn't apply to macroscopic objects. I've read a good deal about the founders of this interpretation and, for some reason, was missing this point. When I fully understood that this view was held by Bohr and Heisenberg, many of their statements made a lot more sense.

I highly recommend this book for those who have already developed an understanding of the basics of QM, even if without knowing the math.

  • Real Magic

  • Ancient Wisdom, Modern Science, and a Guide to the Secret Power of the Universe
  • By: Dean Radin
  • Narrated by: Mark Bramhall
  • Length: 8 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 902
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 778
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 770

The chief scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) turns a critical eye toward such practices as telepathy, clairvoyance, precognition, and psychokinesis. Are such powers really possible? Science says yes. According to noted scientist and best-selling author of The Conscious Universe, Dean Radin, magic is a natural aspect of reality, and each of us can tap into this power with diligent practice.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Pertinent but lackluster

  • By Marci B on 05-22-18

Fun listening and learned a lot

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-19-19

This is by far the most enjoyable Dean Radin book I've listened to. He's taken on a new voice in this book, moving away from being a serious scientist towards a more relaxed and fun-loving person. It's as if he's decided to stop trying to impress us with how scientific his findings are and is more just talking with us. But he has the same discerning intelligence and logic.

His analysis of the assumptions of scientific materialism is brilliant. In this book he describes a trend away from scientific materialism and towards interests in consciousness and spiritual issues.

I really enjoyed this book and will be listening to it a second time.

  • Your Soul's Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born

  • By: Robert Schwartz
  • Narrated by: Scott R. Smith
  • Length: 19 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 117
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 110
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 110

Would you like to understand the deeper spiritual meaning of miscarriage, abortion, caregiving, abusive relationships, sexuality, adoption, poverty, suicide, rape, and mental illness? In his groundbreaking first book, Your Soul's Plan: Discovering the Real Meaning of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born, Robert Schwartz brought the idea of pre-birth planning into the mainstream. Now, his brilliant sequel Your Soul's Gift delves even deeper by exploring these subjects and others, such as spiritual awakening and even the pre-birth planning we do with our future pets.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Transformational book

  • By Alexandra Hopkins on 02-08-19

Transformational book

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-08-19

This book is transforming my life. I've read dozens of books on the subject of spirituality and self-improvement. But this book really stands out. "Your Soul's Gift" is allowing me to leap forward in spiritual development--to become less judgmental, less worried, and more loving.

I had already listened to "Your Soul's Plan," the first book by this author. And I got a great deal out of it. But "Your Soul's Gift" is having even greater impact. I think that's because it deals with life challenges of great magnitude. They are the sorts of things that are hard to reconcile with the idea of a loving God and a beneficent universe. Yet, this book provides a point of view that makes this reconciliation possible.

I'm currently listening for my third time through. I can already see the difference in myself between when I started listening and now. Thank you, Robert Schwartz, for bringing this book to us. And, yes, I will ask my library to carry it as both a book and an audiobook.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Being Human

  • An Entheological Guide to God, Evolution, and the Fractal, Energetic Nature of Reality
  • By: Dr. Martin W. Ball PhD
  • Narrated by: Martin W. Ball
  • Length: 4 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 10
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 10

Simple, concise, and radical, Being Human outlines the Entheological Paradigm, a Grand Unified Theory of reality that accounts for not only all of the physical world, but personal consciousness, life, and God as well. This guide explains the nature of God as a fractal energy being and how this one being works to create all of physical reality and is also embodied in all living beings through the process of evolution. To be human is to be God in a body.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Practical, Concise, and Foundational!

  • By Anonymous User on 12-08-18

A fun listen--Interesting and thought-provoking

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-15-19

This is one of the more interesting and thought-provoking books that I've listened to. The author lays out his worldview and his understanding of the ultimate nature of reality (metaphysics). He pulls no punches and, interestingly, provides virtually no evidence or argumentation. Here it is, take it or leave it!

His worldview is quite spiritual but rejects much of religious and New Age precepts about souls and the afterlife. This is a worldview and metaphysics that he appears to have developed by taking hallucinogenic drugs, the kinds that are often used in religious and shamanistic work. He's understandably vague about his own drug-taking. But he very much encourages us to try DMT, peyote, etc. He also provides how-to's so that we have profitable spiritual experiences. His idea is that if we take these, we'll embrace the worldview that the author lays out. I wouldn't know!

I, myself, embrace views that the author rejects as New Age fantasy. As I listened, I realized that the author seems convinced that it's possible to KNOW the ultimate nature of reality through personal experience. I have many times had the experience of having a realization through a transformative spiritual experience. And, then, I find that later spiritual experiences have given me higher-level realizations which replace the earlier ones.

I think it unlikely that any particular realization would be one that lays out the ultimate nature of reality. As the author says, we are like characters in a video game. We're not situated well, even when greatly freed from the rules of the game, to understand the fundamentals of the reality that exists beyond the game.

However, we can have realizations through spiritually transformative experiences that help us to lead happier more beneficial lives. I find the author somewhat limited in this regard. His sees the ultimate good as being authentic to one's own personality and desires. For example, if a roommate doesn't like one's singing voice, the author urges that one be authentic and sing anyway. How about having some empathy and consideration? One can always sing when the roommate isn't around. The author even notes that others don't tend to have a good reaction to people who have been liberated in their views in the way that the author has!

The author's limited understanding of what it takes to create good relationships suggests to me that his worldview isn't a description of the ultimate nature of reality. Rather, it's a step forward, and there will be more steps. Nevertheless, this is an extremely clearly-written and thought-provoking book. I've had my own significant realizations listening to it and had fun doing so. I highly recommend it.





  • Application of Impossible Things

  • A Near-Death Experience in Iraq
  • By: Natalie Sudman
  • Narrated by: Jena Petterson
  • Length: 4 hrs and 16 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 87
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 79
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 80

This is an amazing true story of a female civilian employee of the Army Corps of Engineers in Basrah and Nasiriyah, Iraq. She was riding in a truck with men when a roadside bomb destroyed the vehicle. Her body was so severely damaged that there was no possible way she could live. She vividly recounts her near-death experience when she went out of her body, to the spirit world.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Fascinating Book by Natalie Sudman

  • By karen swain on 02-12-15

Enjoyed it and learned a lot!

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-02-19

This is an enjoyable and informative book about a Near Death Experience. Natalie Sudman, the author, has a pleasant sense of humor and a highly analytical mind. She provides considerable information about her time in the Afterlife--what it was like. Her descriptions provide more insights than the reports of many others because she seems to have gone deeper into the Afterlife rather than being turned away before really entering it.

  • Imagine Heaven

  • Near-Death Experiences, God's Promises, and the Exhilarating Future That Awaits You
  • By: John Burke
  • Narrated by: Tristan Wright
  • Length: 10 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 327
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 288
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 287

All of us long to know what life after death will be like. Best-selling author John Burke is no exception. In Imagine Heaven, Burke compares over 100 gripping stories of near-death experiences (NDEs) to what Scripture says about our biggest questions of heaven: Will I be myself? Will I see friends and loved ones? What will heaven look like? What is God like? What will we do forever? What about children and pets?

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Great book

  • By Anonymous User on 10-11-17

Don't make this your only book on the subject

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-09-18

One purpose of learning about NDE's is to open oneself to a good experience as one transitions from life on Earth to the Afterlife. Many report that the experience of the Afterlife is responsive to one's beliefs about it, so these beliefs may matter. This book is not by authors who say that they have experienced an NDE. It is about NDE's of others filtered through a literal reading of the Bible. If you read only this book about NDE's, you will have received a distorted picture of the experience and, possibly, limited your Afterlife experience, at least temporarily.

I highly recommend also reading or listening to books by people who have actually experienced an NDE: Dr. Eben Alexander, Dr. Mary Neal, Nancy Rynes, and so many others.

On the one hand, I'm glad that the authors have not taken the position that NDE's are the work of the Devil. NDE's usually involve so much love, forgiveness, and, often, beautiful descriptions of God and Jesus, that it makes no sense to maintain, as some Christians do, that the Devil creates these experiences.

On the other hand, the authors bend the reports of NDE's to fit Biblical doctrine. For example, frequently, "Experiencers" report going through a tunnel on their way to Heaven. Apparently, there's no Biblical quote that supports this report. As I recall, the authors mention a tunnel only once and then they "correct" that report. They maintain that the person must have misinterpreted what he really saw.

The authors attempt to persuade readers that, based on quotations from the Bible, our task on Earth is to be obedient, as children are, to a fatherly God. They say that if we are sufficiently obedient to God, we will earn rewards in Heaven beyond what is possible on Earth and beyond description. These rewards are described in very materialistic terms—homes, good jobs, fun activities like sports events, etc. While all those who accept Jesus as their Savior will be admitted to Heaven, only the obedient will receive ineffable honors and rewards.

Those who do not accept Jesus as their Savior will consign themselves to Hell for eternity.

At the same time, nothing in the NDE reports that they quote from supports these claims about accepting Jesus, obedience, rewards, and eternal Hell. The authors do not explain that they have based these claims on the Bible and Church teachings rather than what Experiencers have reported.

I've read or listened to 100's of reports of NDE's. Many of these describe a loving and powerful God and Jesus, so loving and powerful as to be impossible to describe in words. While I've learned about only a fraction of the reports available, none have described God or Jesus as demanding obedience or handing out rewards as a father would. This description very much conflicts with NDE characterizations of God and Jesus. Nor have the authors of "Imagine Heaven" provided supporting quotes from Experiencers.

At the same time, I want to thank the authors of "Imagine Heaven." I believe that this book is a step forward for many Christians, in that it does not demonize NDE’s. In addition, for me, it was the clearest and most logical explanation of Christian doctrine that I've read regarding the role of Jesus. The book’s explanation is complex, involving two times of judgement of humans. But, it all fits together. It just doesn't fit the picture one gets if one reads a lot of reports by NDE Experiencers. Nevertheless, I feel the book has an important contribution to the literature on Christianity and NDE's.

I gave the narration two stars because the male narrator is distracting with his attempts to mimic women, children, and various accents. He's actually a pretty good mimic, but it's an annoying distraction nonetheless.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Awakenings from the Light

  • 12 Life Lessons from a Near Death Experience
  • By: Nancy Rynes
  • Narrated by: Nancy Rynes
  • Length: 7 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 41
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 36
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 36

Suffering from severe spinal and head injuries, Rynes knew she was dying. At that moment, she underwent the first of two life-changing near-death experiences - her consciousness split between her frightened, injured self lying on the road, and an impartial, peaceful observer-consciousness who watched as first responders fought to keep her alive. Her second, more lengthy near-death experience came days later, during the surgery that attempted to repair her traumatized spine.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • More spiritual concepts than NDE content

  • By Trevor C. on 07-19-18

Transformational book

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-28-18

I've read or listened to something on the order of 100 accounts of Near Death Experiences (NDE)--I've been binging on the subject lately. Nancy Rynes' account of her NDE is fairly typical in certain ways. It's well-written, well-organized, and interesting. But, in one way it's particularly outstanding--she brought back extensive teachings, which she's able to explain in detail. Many "experiencers" bring back teachings regarding loving each other, our connectedness, forgiveness, and similar ideas. However, Nancy Rynes really puts meat on the bones.

She relays, first, the extensive teachings that she was given by her Guide in the Afterlife. Then, she adds her understanding of them along with suggestions for related spiritual exercises. For whatever reason, her retelling of these oft-repeated principles hit home with me. While I feel that I've made a lot of spiritual progress in my life, Nancy's book is giving me a big boost for moving further along. I've had many realizations while listening and can see that I've already made changes in my life. I'm now listening for the 5th time and still having new realizations. Yes, I recommend this book!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • The Story of Light

  • By: Ben Bova
  • Narrated by: Stefan Rudnicki
  • Length: 6 hrs and 10 mins
  • Abridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 108
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 33

From the creation of life to the exploration of the heavens and the stars, from the origins of the earth to the possibility of life on other planets, Ben Bova unveils the beauty and science behind this phenomenon. Bova masterfully explains how light affects us every day of our lives, from our religions to our sex drives. He examines how we use light in art, science, industry, entertainment, cosmetics, jewelry, and in a myriad other ways.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Well done!

  • By Amazon Customer on 02-27-05

All about light--once over lightly

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-28-18

I enjoyed this book about light. It's basically "all about light"--what it is, the history of the study of light, and how it's used. The physics is treated once-over quickly--not with a great deal of depth. Ben Bova writes in an enjoyable style. It's really a book about "everything you wanted to know about light but were afraid to ask." Many different topics are covered and explained in general terms without profound depth. If you want a survey of what is known about light, this is the book for you.

  • Science and the Akashic Field

  • An Integral Theory of Everything
  • By: Ervin Laszlo
  • Narrated by: Tom Pile
  • Length: 6 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 112
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 97
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 95

Mystics and sages have long maintained that there exists an interconnecting cosmic field at the roots of reality that conserves and conveys information, a field known as the Akashic record. Recent discoveries in vacuum physics show that this Akashic field is real and has its equivalent in science's zero-point field that underlies space itself. This field consists of a subtle sea of fluctuating energies from which all things arise: atoms and galaxies, stars and planets, living beings, and even consciousness.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Made me hungry for more!

  • By Dwight on 09-22-17

A must-read about ultimate nature of reality

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-15-18

Ervin Laszlo has some fascinating ideas about the nature of our universe and its relationship to consciousness. This is a must read for anyone interested in the ultimate nature of reality. The concepts are fascinating. The writing is, however, quite dry. And the narration also is not that engaging. But, this is an extremely important book as the author introduces ideas about the holographic nature of reality that I've not seen elsewhere.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Proof of Heaven

  • A Neurosurgeon's Near-Death Experience and Journey into the Afterlife
  • By: Eben Alexander
  • Narrated by: Eben Alexander
  • Length: 6 hrs and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 3,634
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,184
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 3,206

On November 10, 2008, Dr. Eben Alexander was driven into coma by a disease so lethal that only 1 in 10,000,000 survive. Seven days later, he awakened with memories of a fantastic odyssey deep into another realm that were more real than this earthly one - memories that included meeting a deceased birth sister he had never known existed. Dr. Alexander deployed all his knowledge as a scientist to find out whether his mind could have played a trick on him. In its shutdown state, there was no way it could have.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Compelling

  • By Kelly on 10-27-12

A page-turner, beautifully narrated

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-20-18

I couldn't stop listening to this book. It's a real page-turner. It's also beautifully narrated by the author. Totally enjoyable. I'm recommending it to my husband as an excellent way to learn about a Near Death Experience by a reliable witness.