Healing Society: A Prescription for Global Enlightenment by Dr. Seung Heun Lee (Walsch Books, 2000, ISBN: 1-57174-189-5)
This book was written by: Dr. Seung Heun Lee, creator and grand master of Dahn Hak and Brain Respiration, which is less painful than it sounds. Dr. Lee writes that his work with Ki energy has allowed him "to perform some so-called miraculous feats, such as communing with spirits, curing incurable diseases, helping paralyzed people walk, and calming mentally unstable people"(p.xiii).
What is in this book: A discussion of the mindset and approaches that will be necessary to heal society, relayed via anecdotes from Dr. Lee and metaphors that may be more commonly used in Korea. Some of them translate across cultures, like the statement that "we human beings are like puppets dancing on a stage, unable to look beyond the curtains and realize that we are not dancing to the rhythm of the divine music that's playing in the theater"(p.79). Other references, like Dr. Lee's description of a series of pictures where "the second frame has the now-grown calf with a nose ring and getting a spanking from the farmer for misbehaving"(p.3), may need to be re-interpreted—try replacing "farmer" with "parent" or "teacher," and swap out "calf" for "child" or "hooker." However, some of the references are completely inscrutable, like his statement that "humans insist upon differentiating everything, ever since we ate of the grape in Margo's Castle"(p.74).
Seriously, I googled the hell out of "Margo's Castle" and only came up with some terrible music, a realtor, a bar, and a shopping mall development, which are tough to connect to either enlightenment or grapes.
What is not in this book: Undue weight placed on Christianity as the only path to a healed society. We are caught in a system of constant competition driving us to ruin, and "one or two enlightened people cannot stop this machine. Twelve disciples cannot help us now"(p.79). Did you hear that, Jesus? In your FACE. And that business about God sacrificing his only son for our sins? "Even a porcupine loves its young. Even a lowly rodent knows to die for its offspring"(p.19), so by Dr. Lee's reckoning, God has no more common sense than a porcupine.
This book also doesn't place a lot of importance on our physical shells. "The physical body and mental acuity that you have been born with are not you, but just tools temporarily lent you for you to experience things that will mature you spiritually"(p.xiv). Hopefully, you have borrowed these tools from someone who isn't in a hurry to get them back, but it's a perspective that helps you remember that "you are not a quick-tempered Latino male with a penchant for computer programming who enjoys football games on weekends and good detective stories. You are not a patient, virtuous woman who has good judgment and shrewd mind when it comes to 'too good to be true' offers"(p.10). Also, you are not a robot crimefighter from the steam age, a transgendered Swede who constructs scale models of global landmarks out of earwax, or a dog who solves mysteries with the help of a sassy talking pocket calculator.
Would you recommend this book to Suzanne Somers? Yes, she seems pretty interested in health programs, so she might like to learn more about Brain Respiration, which "is a training regimen maximized to meet the needs of the twenty-first century"(p.49). "The actual Brain Respiration program consists of five levels"(p.63), which are—in sequential order—Brain Sensitizing, Brain Softening, Brain Cleaning, Brain Reinforming, and Brain Energizing. Ms. Somers may be pretty familiar with the second level already, but she could still learn something new.
Would you recommend this book to an adolescent male? Yes. "All the problems we face now in this world came about because we, as human beings, could not play well with each other. We don't play well with ourselves, first of all"(p.90), so getting them to play well with themselves could solve all the world's problems without being much of a challenge.
What is interesting about this book? Although the title of this book promises a prescription, "Brain Respiration is done by your own hands, through your own choice, for the advancement of your own spiritual awareness, and for the betterment of yourself and all mankind"(p.48) without any of the harmful poisons that the western world calls medication.
Dr. Lee does not think small, stating that he wants "to call upon the world to embark on an Enlightenment Revolution, a massive spiritual awakening that will sweep across the Earth with a thundering speed, bringing the joy of enlightenment to everyone"(p.xii-xiii). It's a bold vision that will yield dramatic results:
When these one hundred million people make the choice to reach a collective enlightenment, then we will change the destiny of the Earth itself. The healing vibration of their choices and determination will cure the Earth of the ills that we have caused. Then we will finally be on our way to Margo's Castle again.(p.75)