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Nigel

Tauranga, New Zealand
  • 32
  • reviews
  • 104
  • helpful votes
  • 33
  • ratings
  • The Science of Enlightenment: How Meditation Works

  • By: Shinzen Young
  • Narrated by: Edoardo Ballerini
  • Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 92
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 79
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 78

For decades, one of the most engaging teachers of our time has illuminated the many dimensions of awakening - but solely at his live retreats and on audio recordings. Now, with The Science of Enlightenment, Shinzen Young brings to listeners an uncommonly lucid guide to mindfulness meditation for the first time: how it works and how to use it to enhance your cognitive capacities, your kindness and connection with the world, and the richness of all your experiences. As thousands of his students and listeners will confirm, Shinzen is like no other teacher you’ve ever encountered.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Best book on meditation available

  • By Benjamin Davidson on 08-28-18

Best overview of enlightenment so far

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

Reviewed: 12-24-18

I really enjoyed this book. So many "Wow!" moments.

If I were to sum up the single thing that really made the book stand out for me, it would be this:

So much of what is written about enlightenment feels to be about the "pre-conceptual" - taking away the contribution of conceptual thought towards our state / how we feel in any given moment. I get this - many of my most precious moments are remembered for the bliss of discovering the spirit in everything that you look at - tree, bird, sky, bush, work of art.... Getting to this point is often a switch that takes you into your appreciation of the thing just for how you sense it. For this reason, I've often assumed that full enlightenment would simply relate to being able to step fully into this "world without words". All of my encounters with the Magic of Everyday Life are consistent with this direction.

I've spent much of my life as a conceptual modeller (and sometimes quantitative modeller) of biological systems. So it's always seemed a little ironic that my pursuit of the spiritual feels like a complete negation of the way that I've invested the last forty professional years.

Shinzen's book has given me a jolt: I'm not just around the corner from living in a world of ongoing magic. I've only glimpsed that first step of the journey! His proposition is that the bliss of stepping towards / blissing out in the non-conceptual MUST be matched by equivalent effort in exploring one's inner world in a way that has analogy to developing a conceptual model of how it functions.

Before reading the book, I'd recommend going through the free course on the linked website: unifiedmindfulness.com.

But don't miss out on the book - it is a tour de force!

Absolutely five stars!

  • The Method: 5 Inquiry Steps to Enlightenment

  • By: Kyle Hoobin
  • Narrated by: Kyle Hoobin
  • Length: 2 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14

Things become much more simplified at the end of the spiritual search...so much so that it's possible to identify key stages that every seeker encounters immediately preceding awakening (enlightenment). So in one sense, these five steps have not been invented by me. I have simply segmented the final stages that a seeker of truth encounters when they have reached the end of the spiritual search (for greater clarity and guidance).

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Helpful pointers to awakening

  • By mybelle on 11-02-17

The Emperor has no clothes!

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

Reviewed: 12-24-18

Over the past year, I've listened to upwards of a dozen titles that share a loose collection of links with awakening / enlightenment / meditation / yoga / Buddhism. It's been a pretty mixed bag but with some remarkable high spots. This was not one of them.

Several of the works have been outstanding - robustly argued, clearly presented, beautiful in concept, life-changing in the level of insight delivered. In this group have been: "The Science of Enlightenment" (Shinzen Young), "Why Buddhism is True" (Robert Wright), "A Life Worth Breathing" (Max Strom), "Evolutionary Enlightenment" (Andew Cohen) and, at a more practical "how to" level, "Headspace" by Andy Puddicombe.

There was a bunch of "blah" stuff in the middle - OK but not fully engaging because each failed on one of the dimensions outlined above - I won't list them all as it won't add enough value.

But this one is off the bottom of the scale. The concepts hinted at are the usual (wonderful) suspects. But they are alluded to in such a muddled way that I couldn't be sure what the message was. It wasn't even clear which of them was being referred to at any particular time. There was no clearly laid out method. It was an immense and sustained effort not to click "OFF". The burbled and garbled stream of vaguely relevant words was just so frustrating. It is as though the author has made everything much more mysterious than it needs to be.

I won't return it to Audible. I recognise some responsibility for my disappointment because I allowed myself to be taken in by the 4.9 stars rating without putting more effort into listening through the sample. Generally I don't like to leave negative reviews. Over the past while, most of the reviews I've left have been five stars - because these are the books that really wowed me. Those that wow me less, I usually remain silent on. But in this case, a 4.9 star average rating is so misleading that I feel obliged to leave this feedback.

Sorry, Kyle - this didn't do it for me.

  • This Is Marketing

  • You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn to See
  • By: Seth Godin
  • Narrated by: Seth Godin
  • Length: 7 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 52
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 51

This book teaches you how to identify your smallest viable audience; draw on the right signals and signs to position your offering; build trust and permission with your target market; speak to the narratives your audience tells themselves about status, affiliation, and dominance; spot opportunities to create and release tension; and give people the tools to achieve their goals.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Immense

  • By Anonymous User on 02-09-19

Wonderful synthesis

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

Reviewed: 12-08-18

If you would value a rounded synthesis of Seth's canon of work, buy and listen. If you are like me, you will listen more than once and get more. It is a rewarding summary and exposition of Seth's key ideas. My sense is that it will support a deep re-examination of all that we can do on the path to creating valuable change. In this way, the book can function as a manual for developing a meaningful life through work. Well done and thankyou :-)

  • How to See

  • Looking, Talking, and Thinking About Art
  • By: David Salle
  • Narrated by: Eric Michael Summerer
  • Length: 7 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 9

How does art work? How does it move us, inform us, challenge us? Internationally renowned painter David Salle's incisive essay collection illuminates the work of many of the most influential artists of the 20th century. Engaging with a wide range of Salle's friends and contemporaries - from painters to conceptual artists such as Jeff Koons, John Baldessari, Roy Lichtenstein, and Alex Katz, among others - How to See explores not only the multilayered personalities of the artists themselves but also the distinctive character of their oeuvres.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Bored to tears

  • By Cayenne on 08-26-18

The title felt like a lie

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

Reviewed: 09-19-18

Well, I'd spent the money so I persisted to the end. But it was a slog.

Salle writes authoritatively. He writes with seemingly deep knowledge on modern art history. I appreciated his lucid and intelligent writing. I enjoyed his humorous use of metaphor.

Unfortunately for me, I was hoping for content that was consistent with the title. Perhaps a framework for seeing. Perhaps some timeless truths on tools for exploring the products of visual artists. Is there a general way to reach into visual art that would allow viewers to get the most out of what is presented? If that is what you are looking for then the book will likely disappoint you too.

The book needed a conceptual framework - a core thesis, carefully developed and laid out. This would have provided a great way to make use of Salle's undoubted knowledge and experience. With this, I would have felt less deceived by the title. Instead, the book had an unusual feel. It was not short on content. But it was like a personally curated encyclopaedia of modern art history mashed up with personal anecdotes. Much of the content was biographical on the large number of artists talked about. A surprising amount of the content was autobiographical. As audiobook it naturally comes without the support of images. The cataloguing of Salle's responses to dozens of artists' bodies of work requires a persistent listener.

The second big let down was the extent to which numerous responses contained put-downs of the work of other artists. These did not cast the author as an objective, dispassionate, nor compassionate member of his profession.

A more accurate title would not have tempted me to buy. Then I wouldn't have had to write this review. Sorry, David, but the title felt like a lie.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Subscribed

  • By: Tien Tzuo, Gabe Weisert
  • Narrated by: Tien Tzuo, Dan Woren
  • Length: 7 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 14
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12

Today's consumers prefer the advantages of access over the hassles of ownership. It's not just Internet services like Netflix and Spotify; even industrial firms like GE and Caterpillar are reinventing themselves as solutions providers. Whether you sell software, clothes, insurance, or industrial machines, you need to master the transition to the subscription model. Adapting to the subscription economy takes more than just deciding to sell subscriptions instead of products. You'll have to reinvent your company from the inside out - from your accounting to your entire IT architecture. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Unbelievably amazing!!!

  • By Splento Photographers On Demand on 09-24-18

Persisted to the end

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

Reviewed: 07-01-18

I kept waiting for the insights that were going to revolutionise my thinking about my small business. Or gain new insights into my previous corporate life. Somehow they eluded me. Perhaps the whole approach described in the book is better suited to much larger businesses than where my attention is currently focused. There was one key insight that I enjoyed and valued - about short cycle interactions between company and customer supporting an unrelenting focus on creating customer value. A helpful point that I will reflect on more in developing our marketing strategy. But that feels more like the subject for a slide deck than the chapter and verse presentation of the monster amount of factual information contained in this book. I hope that there will be readers of this book from large corporations who will find the content both inspiring and riveting. For me, it didn't work. My persistence left me simply relieved to be moving on.

  • Our Pristine Mind

  • A Practical Guide to Unconditional Happiness
  • By: Orgyen Chowang
  • Narrated by: Fred Stella
  • Length: 8 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 36
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 36

The true nature of our mind is brilliant, clear, and joyful. But we don't experience this reality amid the swirl of stresses, thoughts, and emotions of day-to-day life. Our Pristine Mind is a practical guide to uncovering our naturally comfortable state of mind and reconnecting with the unconditional happiness that is already within us. Using straightforward, accessible language, Orgyen Chowang Rinpoche leads us through the path of Pristine Mind meditation.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Perfect Meditation Book To Bring You Happiness

  • By Heather on 03-01-17

Priceless insight

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

Reviewed: 06-15-18

For decades, I have just once in a while slipped into a sublime state - usually when in some encounter with nature. Alongside this, I have from time to time tried to develop a meditation practice, sensing that this was the route to being able to access this sublime state on a more repeatable and regular basis. Achieving that access has so far eluded me. Orgyen's book provides simple and beautiful insight into this connection and how to make it a part of your everyday experience. I realise now that slipping into this state for me is as simple as becoming absorbed in my immediate experience and allowing the distractions of what Orgyen calls "mental events" to fall away to reveal a world of spectacular beauty. After decades of not quite getting meditation, Orgyen has in the space of a couple of listening to this book provided me with a key that I intuitively know will transform my everyday experience and accelerate growth of a much more beautiful way of spending the balance of my life. Orgyen, where were you when I was twenty?!!!

  • A Life Worth Breathing

  • A Yoga Master's Handbook of Strength, Grace, and Healing
  • By: Max Strom
  • Narrated by: Max Strom
  • Length: 7 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 482
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 418
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 413

We can do more with this life. We all know it, we all wish for it, but just how to do itthat eludes us. In his new book, A Life Worth Breathing, internationally renowned yoga teacher and spiritual philosopher Max Strom shows us the way. His groundbreaking book reaches past expected dogma in a language that is vital, inspired, and accessible. Strom leads us on a journey of self-discovery as we excavate our past in order to have a better understanding of our present.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A true teacher.

  • By Bend Yoga on 02-22-15

An absolute gem of a book

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

Reviewed: 06-06-18

Every chapter of this book is packed with gentle, insightful, practical, humble and compassionate wisdom. Of the hundreds of amazing audiobooks that I have enjoyed over the past decade, this one is a stand-out for its potential to function as a manual for integrated, rounded realisation of a life worth living. I am indebted to Max for the effort he has invested in shaping this beautiful synthesis. Next: listen again with a notebook to capture a few more action / reflection points. Thankyou!

  • Fat for Fuel

  • A Revolutionary Diet to Combat Cancer, Boost Brain Power, and Increase Your Energy
  • By: Dr. Joseph Mercola
  • Narrated by: John Glouchevitch
  • Length: 8 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 736
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 647
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 643

For over a century, we've accepted the scientific consensus that cancer results from genetic disease due to chromosomal damage in cell nuclei. But what if scientists are chasing a flawed paradigm? What if cancer isn't a disease of damaged DNA but rather of defective metabolism as a result of mitochondrial dysfunction? What if that startling truth could revolutionize our understanding of other diseases, too - and show us a radical new path to optimal health?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Best book ever! Every body should refer this!

  • By belal on 05-24-17

Outstanding synthesis

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

Reviewed: 07-06-17

If you could sum up Fat for Fuel in three words, what would they be?

Empowering dietary insights

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, it's a fascinating listen. No doubt parts of it will be shown to be inaccurate as the volume of clinical and scientific study in this area expands over the coming decade. But my overriding impression is of a masterful synthesis of key concepts and new information available on the opportunity to improve health through nutrition. It is shocking and sobering to discover (through reading this and related titles over the past couple of years) how much the dogmatic dietary advice of the past four or five decades remains at issue at its very core. So it is with a sense of relief that you can have much of the confusion addressed by this reconceptualisation of new and old information. Thankyou to the author for the effort that has gone into making this available.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Tripping Over the Truth

  • The Return of the Metabolic Theory of Cancer Illuminates a New and Hopeful Path to a Cure
  • By: Travis Christofferson
  • Narrated by: Clay Lomakayu
  • Length: 9 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 399
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 354
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 349

A masterful synchronization of history and cutting-edge science shines new light on humanity's darkest diagnosis. In the wake of the Cancer Genome Atlas project's failure to provide a legible road map to a cure for cancer, science writer Travis Christofferson illuminates a promising blend of old and new perspectives on the disease.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Non-fiction books - please include references

  • By yaelb on 06-15-16

Awesome, awesome, awesome

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

Reviewed: 06-29-17

I loved listening to this book. Its insights into the personal efforts involved in scientific discovery, the gradual revelation of the intrigue and conflicts between the big / bad versus small / good guys and the sense of a blindly followed paradigm and unnecessary suffering and death being overthrown by independent thinkers - all fantastic. Great project, great achievement - thankyou!

  • The Fast Diet

  • The Simple Secret of Intermittent Fasting: Lose Weight, Stay Healthy, Live Longer
  • By: Dr. Michael Mosley, Mimi Spencer
  • Narrated by: Dr. Michael Mosley, Mimi Spencer
  • Length: 4 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 47
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43

Not just weight loss - better health too! The authors of the book that is still the number one UK nonfiction best seller six months after publication now present their work for audiobook listeners and make it even easier to adopt their brilliant system. Far from being just another fad, the Fast Diet is a radical new way of thinking about food, a lifestyle choice that could transform your health. This is your indispensable guide to simple and effective weight loss, without fuss or the need to endlessly deprive yourself.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awesome intro to a life changing proposition

  • By Nigel on 06-08-17

Awesome intro to a life changing proposition

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

Reviewed: 06-08-17

Have listened to a couple of books on fasting this week. I was a bit mystified by the focus on low fat in this one given the surge in published findings on the benefits of high fat easing of the last decade. Still, this book has been planned superbly. Its content is both accessible and inspirational. It is practical and practicable. And the formats of the different sections stimulated interest throughout. Superb job - very well done - and thankyou!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful