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To begin with, the book opens with a brief history of UFOs and paranormal activity. The first couple of hours of this book is about as deep as something I would have picked up from a Scholastic Book Fair in the sixth grade. In fact, I'm not well versed in UFO activity at all, and yet I was familiar with quite a lot of material in this book. Not only did it not add anything new to the material, but it was kind of bland and I almost gave up on the book at this point.
After the book finally kicks into gear, though, it was well worth hanging in there. The author was very adept at trying to simplify quantum physics into laymen terms, and then build upon this base by showing how hokey paranormal experiences can be reconciled against modern, real science.
Following in the footsteps of "The Field," by Lynne McTaggart, "PSIence" is a report-style book. Rather than regurgitating material from "The Field" or the few other similar books, it managed to not only add new material, but did so in an engaging way.
There is a wealth of interesting quotes from real physicists and experiments that I was not aware of, even though this is a field of interest for me. But perhaps the most intriguing parts of the book were the final few chapters, in which modern quantum physics is contrasted to ancient sacred texts, such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hermes, etc. Although, comments are made throughout the book about how The Field sounds like something mystics have been saying all along, the last chapter or so ties the two together better than any book I have come across so far.
The only other work I have ran across that attempted this, "The Source Field Investigations: The Hidden Science and Lost Civilizations Behind the 2012 Prophecies" by David Wilcock, fell short (in way, way more words) than what Marie Jones was able to accomplish here in a clear, short and concise way.
Although, I do still recommend "The Source Field Investigations." I think these two books are very complimentary to each other, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. The strength of "PSIence," is that it is much shorter and to the point than Wilkcock's Magnum opus. Wilcock also tends to get a little farther "out there" than Jones does. Not that there anything wrong with that, but if you were to be giving the book as a gift to someone that was not very open to metaphysics, "PSIence" would be the safer bet of the two.
When I think about my time on this earth, the lyrics to a Grateful Dead song always come to mind: what a long strange trip it's been. Indeed, when degreed physicists start sounding like Siddhartha, it is strange times. It's my belief that we are just on the edge of a lot of breakthroughs, but Newtonian physics is holding us back. It's my hope that we are approaching a tipping point, where the impossible will quickly become possible.
As quirky as they may seem, I think books like "The Field," "PSIence," and "The Source Field Investigations," are doing a lot of good to move us forward. Not to sound tired and cliche, but we really could be seeing the emergence of a new age right here in our lifetime.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
This is a well-researched and thoroughly documented book that I wanted very much to like. The author is clearly a talented writer and unafraid to share her own inexplicable experiences; that kind of honesty is something I value. To the extent that the book follows her own hunt for the truth of what she's seen and lived, it is fantastic. The problem, however, is that what could be so good is marred by pandering to the audience.
This pandering comes in (at least) two forms.
First, while I enjoy humor in non-fiction -- it helps to keep dense subject matter more breezy in some cases -- the humor in this book is tired, feckless, and clichéd. The jokes herein are the jokes that socially-awkward nerdy teenagers make when they're trying to impress the cool kids. And, like the cool kids, I believe that many who read this book will simply groan at the awkward attempts. The author would be better off sticking to the nonfiction and dumping the poor one-liners that litter the book; they feel like afterthoughts that a humor-challenged editor demanded to make the book more "accessible."
Second, while the poor humor is enough of a turn-off, Ms. Jones condescends to the audience at times. Good nonfiction takes complex topics and walks the reader through these ideas in a way that's comprehensible without communicating us that we're all too dumb to really understand these complex ideas on our own. When it comes to quantum physics, to take but one example, Ms. Jones goes out of her way to assure us that she won't burden our minds with such mathematical complexities that we may never be able to understand. Even if it's true, why do that to your audience? Regardless, the book would be much more successful without this kind of meta-crap. Please just explain it and spare us the warnings about how tough things are, and how we need to "hang on to our Higgs boson" while you so generously hold our inexperienced hands as you walk us through such big ideas that our puny little minds might struggle with.
Overall, this book could be intensely powerful given the personal honesty of the author and her own lifelong quest to understand the paranormal, but as it stands, it is, to me, unreadable and quite hobbled. The bad humor I could probably get past. The pandering, too, I could probably live with. But both together? It's simply too much to make the book enjoyable for me, and it's a topic I'm intensely interested in, and that's unfortunate, because much of the material here is quite solid.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful