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If You Hear the Message Three Times, LISTEN
by Patricia Heller
Hampton Roads Publishing Company
283 pages
Reviewed by Coach Bradley
If You Hear the Message is a highly readable and inspiring account of Patricia Heller’s transformation of suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) to becoming a spiritual and self aware healer. She takes us on a journey from curing her ‘incurable’ illness to investigating healing hands, past life regression, shamanism, manifesting greatness, automatic writing, heart centred transformation, her inner gypsy woman and many more. The book is actually an excellent survey of the healing arts in America over the past fifteen years.

The title refers to what she calls “listening to the universe”. When you hear the same message three times, it is time to pay attention. She gives several examples of when she heard messages three times before she got it. In a heart centred transformation centre in the Arizona desert she heard the teacher tell someone to move her energy to her heart and ‘let it go’. This didn’t make any sense to her at all. The second time she was in awe standing over the Grand Canyon. She turned to her teacher and told her how it was so beautiful it hurt her heart. She was told to ‘let it go.’ She looked at him as if he was an alien. Let go of what, she thought? During a full blown attack of CFS at the centre she was again told to ‘let it go’ when the penny finally dropped. She realized that holding onto her anger was making her physically sick. She had to hear it three times before she was able to really hear it and ‘get it’. That was her last attack of CFS.

In case you are thinking there isn’t a healing art Patricia doesn’t like, rest assured that she approaches them intelligently and with a healthy skepticism that is often absent in books of this type. The road she is on is long and winding, full of insights, pot holes, blind alleys and magnificent vistas. Patricia takes us on the tour with excitement, passion and humility, without trying to make us into converts or convince us that she has found ‘the path’ to enlightenment. In a graceful and humble way, she describes what she found on her own quest for enlightenment and if there is a piece you can take away from it then she has done her job.

Readers are rewarded by Patricia’s insights and warmth; she does an excellent job of writing clearly and extracting the meaning out her experiences. I marveled at her curiosity and capacity to absorb and integrate so many different teachings and to draw important lessons from them that have relevance for a general audience. This book is especially exciting for those who are or who are thinking of going on a similar journey of self discovery.

As a coach I am constantly reminded that it is not the events that shape our lives so much as how we respond to them that is what makes us who we are. This book demonstrates how a woman with spunk, determination, courage, curiosity, a great sense of humour overcame a seemingly hopeless situation and the death of her husband to arrive in a place of wisdom, compassion and happiness.

Bradley Foster is a Gestalt-trained life and leadership coach who lives in Toronto and practices across North America.

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