Book Review: Spirituality 103: The Forgiveness Code

Disclosure: I was provided with a comp copy of this book by the publisher.

Spirituality 103 is one of those frustrating works in which you can clearly see the potential value of the content, but can’t quite access it because of a convoluted presentation.

Part of the issue is that the work is the third in an instructional series, so those who have read the previous works may already be accustomed to the author’s style. But for those opening the book cold, the writing is grammatically sound but stylistically cumbersome. Sentences meant to convey fluidity of thought instead feel overwrought and artificially earnest. Complex ideas are made more so by unnecessary wordiness. It is at times a dense, lecture-like read that makes this 184-page book feel like a 600-page tome.

The underlying message of the power of forgiveness is drowned under a strange smugness in tone. Instead of a warm, welcoming light of forgiveness, I sometimes felt like I was being viewed under a white-hot spotlight of judgment. This is compounded by the confrontational imagery of “warriors of light” versus “warriors of shadow.” I get what the author is attempting to convey, but the end result is so heavy-handed that it actually created a bit of anxiety. Why am I looking for the power of forgiveness in the language of war?

Is it, however, worth trudging through? For the casual reader, the answer would probably be, “No.” The work is simply too gratuitously demanding to be accessible to the casual reader. A more detached reader with a foundation in the concepts presented may be better equipped to parse the value of the message from this book.

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