Sections from Whistler Independent Book Awards Evaluation. To view the complete evaluation, take a look at the following: Calm Brain | Powerful Mind Complete Whistler Independent Book Awards Evaluation
Bite-sized summary: A coherent, well developed narrative arc; appropriate and satisfying ending
Aziz Velji’s book comes at a critical time. Stress is pervasive as never before. Life moves faster and is more complicated. Men, women and children are glued to their cell phones, and as a result, greatly suffer from a chronic case of distracted living. Velji went on a personal quest to find ways to eliminate stress from his own life, and he shares his wealth of research with the perceptive reader. His fascinating book provides a holistic way to rewire the brain into a completely new way of thinking, one that is calm, powerful, permanent and transformative. This is an exhaustively researched and compelling book that alternates between science and spirituality, psychology and quantum physics. Age old wisdom is filtered and collated through his trained science and business mind. He does a good job of describing his experiences. Velji’s big promise is that with the right tools and confidence you can achieve the transition to a sustainable stress-free life. The voluminous research is apparent from the endnotes that provide the discerning and curious reader with additional information on this topic. I read the book once as a book reviewer, and then I started to read it again (as someone who has been affected by the pandemic) to anchor the excellent information and do the exercises listed at the end of the chapters.
Bite-sized summary: Themes are well developed and use vivid imagery to add depth to the narrative
If the author wanted an additional tag line for this book, may I suggest “Transcendental meditation for engineers, business managers and other skeptics.” The author wants the reader the value of giving the rational mind a rest because it is a hindrance to knowing ourselves and ties us in knots with doubts and arguments. As you so wisely write, intellect on its own cannot keep us calm our fears and anxieties which create stress. The author does a masterful job describing how the brain works, the difference between the mind and the brain. The physical structure through which consciousness manifests. Using examples from quantum physics to show similarities between science and mysticism. There is energy rather than solid state at the subatomic level. The author explains that in the process of watching the world we are actually affecting it. Our every thought, word, action has an impact on everything else. Thought is an energy that can be focused like a laser to change physical matter. (My personal favourite physicist is Dr David Bohm who shook up the world of physics as this book may shake up the world of psychiatry and behavioral science.) As the author states on page Xl111 “It’s easier to change and transcend from a baseline of happiness than one from misery. When we are filled with love, fun, laughter and enjoyment we are open and receptive to new things and new ways of doing things.” The Dalai Lama has experienced great stress in his life yet he is a wonderful role model for approaching life with joy. Stress and spirituality are actually two sides to the same coin. All suffering stems from ignorance, hatred and craving. Out normal natural state of mind is one of peace, free from conditioning. It’s a silent and creative mind.
With the enthusiasm of an autodidact* and the clear writing skills of an engineer and business manager, Velji has produced a very useful and user-friendly book. He does a masterful job describing stress and its causes and how it manifests in the brain. We can’t do away with cell phone use, but we can be aware of our lost attention and our capacity to focus. We can’t think our way through our fears and anxieties. But with the information and exercises provided in this excellent and timely book, we can make a transition to a permanent mind shift where we will find peace, happiness and prosperity. Thank you for digesting so much collected wisdom and transmitting it for your reader with an engineer’s precision and the enthusiasm of a quester who found the piece he was seeking. In the wake of the Covid 19 pandemic, there will be greater need for skills to deal with any lingering psychological distress. With its concrete tools and explanations, this book is an excellent addition to that mental first aid kit. I will recommend it with enthusiasm and great pleasure. Also, I like your website. There is so much chatter online, it’s very good to find a site that is simple and easy to navigate. Well done!