Book Review: The War Of Art – Break Through The Blocks & Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield

TheWarOfArt
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
April 11, 2017

The War Of Art – Break Through The Blocks & Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield is a very innovative way to look at the resistance individuals face when attempting to walk the path of a creatively conscious life.

Because resistance is something that we all face in one way shape or form [i.e. procrastination], this book is a book that stands to help everyone in their own unique way.

Pressfield minces no words in his apt definition of what holds creative individuals back:  Resistance.

Resistance is what leaves most of us feeling like abject failures after we’ve lost multiple bouts with it.  The paradox of this conundrum is that Resistance isn’t as untouchable as it might seem at first blush.  Yes, Resistance is the paradise of procrastination on the creative path, it is the ultimate obstacle, the veritable Darth Vader.   As such, resistance is the epitome of self-sabotage.  But, therein lies the key to this curious conundrum: self.

Maraudering deep within our darkest realm, Resistance is the ultimate enemy which seeks to slay every one of our hopes, and cast limitations into each and every one of our dreams.

As Pressfield points out:

“Resistance is a bully.  Resistance has no strength of its own; it’s power derives entirely from our fear of it.  A bully will back down before the runtiest twerp who stands his ground.”[1]

In other words, if the percipient individual – guided by the self – is to overcome this ruthless opponent, they need to face it head on.  As the saying goes, fear is False Evidence Appearing Real.  Like the ego, it only grows when you feed it, so cutting Resistance of at the pass is crucial.  And this is where this book shines.

The War of Art is split into 3 parts.  In Part One, Pressfield shows a plethora of ways in which Resistance can be better understood.  Thereafter, Book Two features ways that the individual can tackle resistance in myriad ways, while Book Three goes beyond into deeper ruminations on invoking the ever-elusive Muse.  He also covers what separates amateurs from professionals, and an unorthodox – but refreshing – look at the artist and how the artist fits into the grand scheme of things.  The book yields more, but those are the core concepts.

As the author aptly notes, if Resistance couldn’t be overcome, the great works that humanity has wouldn’t be available these days.

If you are an individual who runs head on into Resistance daily – and who doesn’t? – or needs a healthy dose of inspiration, this book will definitely help you handle those in spades.  And if you seek to live a more creative life, whether by hobby or profession, then this is a must read.

Pressfield’s unorthodox approach to invoking the Muse is a breath of fresh air, and one that we can all relate too.  In his own words:

“When we sit down each day and do our work, power concentrates around us. The Muse takes note of our dedication.  She approves.  We have earned favor in her sight.  When we sit down and work, we become like a magnetized rod that attracts iron filings.  Ideas come.  Insights accrete.

“Just as Resistance has its seat in hell, so Creation has its home in heaven.  And it’s not just a witness, but an eager and creative ally.”[2]

After reading the book, my only regret was that the book was not longer.  That’s the sign of a good book.

If you want an active ally to accompany you in your personal battleground against Resistance and need a spark to light the tinder of action, get this book.
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Source:

[1] Steven Pressfield, The War Of Art, p. 99.
[2] Ibid., p. 108

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This article is free and open source. You are encouraged and have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
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About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies and mirrors regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

Book Review: Reading With The Right Brain by David Butler

readingwithrightbrain
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
December 7, 2016

Reading With The Right Brain by David Butler is a rather intriguing and unique book.

It’s premise is that individuals, by employing the use of the right brain, will be able of not just increase their reading speed, but be able to further solidify their comprehension by visualizing the words as ideas, rather than just words.

At first glance, this might seem far out.  But after some practice it became easier and easier to accomplish and the more one does it the easier it is to employ.  It’s definitely a very right-brained way of conceptualizing words which solidifies comprehension.  The visuals, at least for me, played out like a movie once you get the hang of it.

In any case, Reading With The Right Brain also features the concept of reading clusters of words in one shot rather than words individually, which increases your speed.  At first, this was harder to get used too then the other above technique, but after all the examples in the book and extra reading it’s coming along rather well.

For instance, instead of reading each component of a sentence such as ‘the-dog-barked’ word by word, one reads it by seeing it as thedogbarked, which combines all three words as a cluster.  This might seem confusing, or even outlandish at first, until we realize that many words we use in our daily lives are compound words, it’s just that we are used to them. Examples of this are driveway, highway, airport, baseball, forever, nearby, etc. etc.

Once one views his suggestion/technique from that lens, the reader will definitely see where he’s getting at.  Admittedly, some word clusters are easier to fuse than others, but with time one gets the hang of it.

Butler also gives many common sense tips, some more common sense than others, while also shedding light to some myths that abound in the arena of ‘speed reading’.

Keeping in mind that having read two speed reading books and finding those helpful, this book still feature new information that has definitely added value to my reading repertoire.  Practice has been vital though.

Another beneficial component the book showcases are the excerpts of stories that Butler provides.  The words are clustered in black and grey and alternate as each word cluster switches.  This was very helpful because the author didn’t have to put this there, he could have simply taught the idea while not providing any further fuel for the fire so to speak.

Considering all its parts, this book has enough value for it to be implemented as part of one’s repertoire.  Whether one is a beginner learning this, or has some experience in this area, the book gives shows more than useful information to make it worth your while.