The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire by Deepak Chopra
(This is a guest book review)
Reviewed by Stella Danker (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This book has one of the best first sentences I have read – “Miracles happen every day.” This is a book to be read slowly and mulled over, to keep close by as a guide, a book from which to extract wisdoms, and through which to create miracles.
There are gems to be mined here, if approached with an open mind and some patience. Better editing would have polished this gem to dazzle a wider audience than the converted like me.
This is my first Deepak Chopra book and there are more than 50 of them. Chopra is a master of the spiritual self-help genre and has been translated into 35 languages. He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians, among other things, and co-founder of
The Chopra Center for Wellbeing in southern California. He writes in this book, from a physics background as well, about the potential that exists in the energy of the universe and our personal power to shape our destinies and make our dreams come true. It is not an airy-fairy leap of faith he is asking of his reader. It is an intelligently put forth quantum leap. Time magazine has called him “the poet-prophet of alternative medicine”.
Chopra requests that the reader persists through the first part of the book and not be tempted to skip to the meaty offerings in the second part of the book. But that is exactly what the reader will want to do because the introduction through to Chapter Two should have been halved. I also urge the reader to persist but suggest that some skimming through would be a good idea.
The physics fascinates but is turgid. Some of the supporting examples are brilliant but some are banal. There are too many personal anecdotes that could have been easily told more succinctly to make an argument for how one thing leads to another seemingly
randomly but actually with a universal purpose to lead us to our destiny.
Chopra delivers the goods from Chapter 3 onwards and the reader is taken mesmerized on a magical, mystery ride though quantum physics to a place offering peace and possibilities. It is an uplifting book in these stressful economic doldrums in which we live. Even if you get nothing else out of this book, it teaches you how to meditate, and offers many mantras. This is a practice that will bring much peace.
There is also much wisdom on how to become extraordinary by understanding the local and non-local mind. “If you really want to break out of the mundane, you must learn to think and dream the impossible.”
Anything that ever happened did so because somebody set an intention for it. This is the “desire” part of the title. Strengthen this intention with a vision and you are on your way to creating a miracle. It has been said that when Mahatma Gandhi was thrown out of
a train in Durban, South Africa, because he was Indian, Gandhi closed his eyes and saw the British Empire crumbling halfway across the world.
There is no such thing as luck or a coincidence. Chopra writes: “Every coincidence becomes an opportunity for creativity. Every coincidence becomes an opportunity for you to become the person the universe intended you to be.” Coincidences are clues sent to us
by the universe. And his book makes us more aware of these and trust that they lead us to where we are meant to be.
Probably the best argument Chopra puts forward on how seemingly random events are synchronized to achieve a deliberate destiny or purpose is in the Big Bang. This is what he calls the Coincidence of the Universe. Absolutely nothing would exist if not
for a “remarkable set of coincidences.” The number of particles and the number of anti-particles had to be just so to begin the chain reactions that would create our planet and the galaxy. Just a little more of this or that, and the whole universe would have collapsed into itself.
The many references in the book to the ancient Vedic texts, the Sanskrit sutras, and to the Greek gods and goddesses are sheer poetry. You want to read this book. Can you pass up the chance that you might actually conjure up magic?
Stella Danker is a freelance journalist based in New York.