As you may have noticed, my principal response to Trump’s ascendancy is to ask each of us to uncover our own passion and then follow it out into the world. That the more of us who courageously activate our own specific purpose in life, the more the interwoven texture of our specific localities will strengthen into resiliency, no matter what “comes down from above.”
When Alex Simack showed up the other day, he was hauling a hefty, well-thumbed book. Wanted to show it to me. Said he was thinking about writing a review. I suggested he send me his review. One reader commented that she’d like to know more about the book. So that makes two of us!
Before showing you his review, I want you to know that I’m a sucker for symbolic systems, various esoteric frameworks within which we can view whatever is driving us in life. My own introduction to symbolic languages came in 1973, when I was suddenly fired from New College of California (then a year-old experimental college; it closed in 2007), for being “too experimental.” You can imagine the shock, and how that shock pummeled me to the point where my arrogant persona softened to the possibility of actually letting in what I had been programmed by both upbringing and academic philosophy to call “utter nonsense.”
What invited itself in first was astrology — the mysteries of which proved so formidable and endlessly fascinating that my initial interest evolved into a career path as consultant/teacher/conference presenter/writer.
Along the way I also introduced myself to numerology, Hand Analysis, I Ching, Human Design, and other “systems” which also intrigue me greatly, and seem to reverberate in ways that I don’t understand but aim to penetrate. Why? Just because! I’m a “double Sagittarius,” driven to continuously explore the far horizons of whatever I think I know.
I imagine that my conversations with new friend Alex will be ongoing, since he too, seems to be infected with the same incessant drive. Good!
First, here’s an intro by the book’s author, one Richard Rudd.
That intro was enough for me to order the book myself!
Here’s Alex’s review which I really appreciate since it discusses the book in relationship to his own personal story.
GUEST AUTHOR ALEX SIMACK
BOOK REVIEW: GENE KEYS
I come to this great work with a bit of Rip Van Winkle type of disorientation — a healthy shock! Where have I been for the last 20 years? As one who has found useful, indeed, very necessary, the don Juan recommendation of retrospection of one’s life, Mr. Rudd’s work here has been wonderfully stimulating. For the power of retrospection is increased by the reawakening of one’s history, especially those parts of one’s history which one would just as soon forget!
Indeed, “forgetting” is one of the 64 Shadows described herein by Mr. Rudd, giving birth, as we become aware, to the Gift of Mindfulness, which in turn births the transcendent state or “Siddhi”, of Revelation.
Just words at this point, if you’ve not yet delved into this work. Indulge me, if you will. At the bottom of life, one bottom of several, but the first long bottom for this earth child, occurring before my 21st birthday, beginning the seven- year -long process of withdrawal from academia and the possibility of its shelter, financial rewards, etc. — I was introduced, rather comically, to the I Ching, the ancient Chinese “Book of Changes.” Now I had loved books ever since grade school when I read them surreptitiously under my desk to evade the boredom of what the teacher was saying. And my hidden purpose for going to college was to read as many of the great books as I could, indeed, to immerse myself into them utterly. For there I could HIDE!
Sure, I also wanted to have a girlfriend (note the possessive there!), to be hip, living together in our off-campus pad, to be cool. And, although I did have, and mistreat, a few girlfriends, I found I was lacking in just about everything. I loved science and math — but they gave me a huge painful knot in my belly. I loved literature, ideas, philosophy, religion — but I was a pipsqueak in trying to talk about anything.
In desperation I attended a “sensitivity training” workshop — and behold! along came a new girlfriend — and a book, the I Ching. (Sally, won’t you come by and get your book back? I haven’t known where you are for 50 years!) With its famous introduction by Carl Jung on Synchronicity Now I could just take some easy courses, smoke all the dope I needed, and —- whatever. And, as I pondered my fate, cast pennies and read the I Ching with all its marvelous advice, “Perseverance furthers” “It furthers one to cross the great water.” I was King! (As
Tom Petty has sung, “It’s good to be King!” For, as with astrology in the West, the I Ching was originally written for the kings of old.
For fifty years I have read and reread this book. Now, along comes a usurper! Kill him! No, of course not. For now, in these times, every man in his own king, every woman her own queen, and Mr. Rudd has not merely retranslated or updated this ancient classic, he has absolutely transmuted it into a whole new form. In all due modesty he insists it is a “transmission,” but I would not call it a “channeled” work, as are so many doing now and always.
Well, my old I Ching world is turned upside down. All the old nice hexagrams I used to draw now come with warnings. Number 11, “Peace”, is now contains a Shadow, “Obscurity.” The terrible “Splitting Apart,” number23, now holds the wonderful gift of Simplicity. (“Tis a gift to be Simple/Tis a gift to be Free….)
If this were not enough, Mr. Rudd has also tied into Astrology also. Astrology became my second metaphysical language after the I Ching, beginning about a year later. He uses astrology as the basis for the “hologenetic profile,” by which one can zero in on one’s major life lessons. But it’s not absolutely necessary. Hell, you can open the book at random and find meaning — if you are open to it. Open the book, open yourself!
This will be everyone’s favorite coffee table book in another year or two, just like M. Scott Peck’s The Road Less Traveled. Most deservedly so!