Not I, Not Other Than I: The life and Teachings of Russel Williamssam
Not I, Not other than I: The Life And Teachings Of Russel Williams is not your average book of enlightenment. If you are like most people, you have probably never even heard of Russel Williams; which is unfortunate because he truly is an inspired example of how humankind is supposed to be. Williams is wrapped in a cloak of light and radiates peace so genuinely that you can feel the calming vibrations within the pages of this book. Here is a man who has nothing to gain; who expects nothing in return; and whose only desire is to guide others in their own awakening.
What is unique about Not I, Not Other Than I is that the chapters alternate between Williams’s enlightened spiritual teachings and the story of his life told by his own recollection. With regards to the autobiographical aspect of the text, Williams’s life truly is fascinating. Even as a very young boy, he carried a tremendous weight on his shoulders. He faced the burdens of poverty and war on a daily basis, and yet he still always seemed to demonstrate a higher understanding of life and why we live it. What makes Williams a powerful spiritual leader is his relatability. You get the impression that he wants to meet people exactly where they are on their journey and the unshakable state of peace that he resides in is tangible. He makes enlightenment feel attainable to the average Joe which, of course, it is! We all have the capacity to expand into this level of consciousness and, in fact, according to Williams, it is our destiny as spiritual beings.
One teaching I found to be particularly unique, and intriguing even, was Williams’s notion on meditation. He says, “I do not believe in long meditation practices. Once you make contact and get the process going, a quarter of an hour or even 10 minutes is quite adequate. Do it seven times a day, until you have a continuum going all the time, rather than once a day. If there’s a gap you lose the momentum, but if you keep it up, every couple of hours or so, there is a continuum.” Makes perfect sense to me! The reason why we seek enlightenment in the first place is so that we can establish a deep sense of happiness and even peace in our lives. We cannot reasonably expect to achieve lasting inner peace by meditating for 30 minutes to an hour when the remaining 23 hours of the day are in chaos. We seek, and hope to maintain, that sacred stillness at all times and more frequent connections to Spirit is the answer to that.
There is one last thought that deeply resonated with me and I feel that it truly allows readers to grasp the kind of man and teacher Russel Williams is. Referring back to this idea of ‘peace’, Williams has this to say, “One of the things about the world that has always amazed me is that people believe that peace means to stop fighting. But it doesn’t. Peace is freedom, not a cessation of hostilities. You need more than simply an absence of aggression. You need friendship, which means giving not taking. Receiving perhaps, but not taking.” Let that marinade for a few minutes!
If you are new to the journey of spirituality, this book is a wonderful resource. It touches on every major principle in what are commonly known as the Universal Truths. You will receive a gentle and relatable understanding of what it means to become enlightened and conscious of who you are and why you are here. If you are a spiritual veteran, I still recommend this book, as there is always something to learn, especially when spoken in a new voice. If you absorb nothing else from Not I, Not Other Than I, you will still have appreciation for Russel Williams as the man and for the amazing life he has lived.
Not I, Not other than I: The Life And Teachings Of Russel Williams
4 of 5 Stars
Author: Russel Williams
Editor: Steve Taylor
Paperback: 171 pages
Publisher: O Books (August 28, 2015)
Reviewed by Courtney Lindemann
Having worked as a book publicist for several years, Courtney is now enjoying a freelance career as a professional proofreader and copy-editor. Being able to read, write and spend more time with her little boy on a daily basis is a dream come true. For additional reviews and information please visit http://www.readingonrepeat.com