Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mutant Message Down Under - Marlo Morgan

Summary: An American woman is summoned by a remote tribe of nomadic Aboriginals, who call themselves the "Real People," to accompany them on a four-month long walkabout through the Outback. While traveling barefoot with them through 1,400 miles of rugged desert terrain, she learns a new way of life, including their methods of healing, based on the wisdom of their 50,000-year-old culture. Ultimately, she experiences a dramatic personal transformation.

Also reviewed by Mindy.

Mutant Message Down Under recounts a unique, timely, and powerful life-enhancing message for all humankind: It is not too late to save our world from destruction if we realize that all living things -- be they plants, animals, or human beings -- are part of the same universal oneness. If we heed the message, our lives, like the lives of the Real People, can be filled with this great sense of purpose.

My Review: There has been a great deal of controversy over rather or not this book is a fictional work. The author has promoted that this is a work based on her personal experiences in the outback and sold as a novel to protect the Aborigines from legal involvement. However, many who are familiar with the Australian outback and the Aborigine way of life feel this book is a complete work of fiction. The manner in which the book is written feels like a little of both. The beginning has more of a novel feel, while the remainder reads as a nonfiction.

While not being certain of the validity of the book was frustrating and distracting at times, the overall message came through loud and clear. We are destroying our world by not respecting all living things. We must remember that we, as humans, need plants and animals to survive. When we fail to respect this, we end up harming ourselves as well.

Though I didn't exactly love this book a few parts spoke to me and rather than try to sum these up I will quote them as they appear in the novel. So pardon the length of this review.

  • "It is truly amazing that after fifty thousand years these people have destroyed no forests, pollutes no water, endanger no species, caused no contamination, and all the while they have received abundant food and shelter. They have laughed a lot and cried very little. They live long, productive, healthy lives and leave spiritually confident."

  • "People are nonliving when angry, depressed, feeling sorry for themselves, or filled with fear. Breathing doesn't determine being alive...Not all breathing people are in a state of aliveness. It's okay to try out negative emotions and see how they feel , but it certainly isn't a place one would wisely want to stay...You are supposed to learn from the experience and ultimately figure out which feels painful and which feels great."

  • "It is fine to walk for a while as the last one in any group, and it is acceptable to spend time mingling in the middle, but ultimately everyone must at some time lead. You have no way of understanding leadership roles until you assume that responsibility. Everyone must experience all of these roles at some time, without exception, sooner or later."

  • "Things...generate fear. The more things you have, the more you have to fear. Eventually you are living your life for things."

  • "Each person hears the same exact first human words: 'We love you and support you on this journey.' At their final celebration, everyone hugs them and repeats this phrase again."

My Rating: 3.5 Stars, if it were truly a nonfiction book I would have probably rated it higher

If I were to sum this book up in one sentence it would be: A discovery in the art of living simply and how this lifestyle can bring more overall happiness.

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