The Bookend

The Bookend

Learning all about Life’s Golden Rules!
Being a historian, and one of life’s dreamers, I often spend time imagining what it would be like to meet certain significant and important people who lived before our time.

Despite all of the great political, literary and humanitarian giants of history, I can honestly say that I would choose to meet with Florence Scovel Shinn, the early 20th century American artist and New Thought writer. My reason for this is simple. Ms Scovel Shinn wrote (and self-published) what is, in my opinion, one of the most important and influential books of the century The Game of Life and How to Play It.
First published in 1925, this tiny work boxes well above its weight in terms of impact and significance. In this, her first book, Scovel Shinn outlines her philosophy that there exists certain metaphysical laws and our relationship to these laws governs our experience in life. Put more succinctly, the author tells us that life is a game, with certain rules, and all about giving and receiving. What we put out in terms of thought, word and deed is returned to us most perfectly. Scovel Shinn demonstrates that what we must do to improve our lives is know and understand these laws and apply them and promises that this will lead to greater happiness and opportunities in life. It is one of the original (and best) manuals for self-improvement and personal enhancement and is less than 100 pages long.
Schovel Shinn has an easy conversational writing style. She outlines her philosophy on life in a clear, practical and humorous way and shares anecdotes about her contemporaries’ life experiences and changes as a result of applying the metaphysical laws outlined in the book. What are the laws? According to the author there exist laws governing intuition, karma, love and the Diving Design. Schovel Shinn often references the Bible but her theories do not depend on Christian beliefs as her philosophy resonates with the teachings of many world religions.
I highly recommend this book. It might take a bit of time to get a copy; the original dates from the early 20th century although it has been reprinted twice. Your efforts in acquiring the work will be rewarded with what you learn from it. Florence Schovel Shinn asserts ‘Most people consider life is a battle, but it is not a battle, it is a game’. Why not cosy up with a nice hot cuppa and learn the rules of the game?

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