Sunday, May 20, 2007

The Law of Attraction, Norman Vincent Peale, and the Grateful Dead

Today's USA Weekend includes an interview with Bernie Siegel, M.D., the renowned author of the classic Love, Medicine & Miracles.

Dr. Siegel, along with Spiritual Literacy: Reading the Sacred in Everyday Life co-author Mary Ann Brussat, lists five books that have inspired legions--and will continue to do so for years to come. "Each generation thinks somebody new is starting the process," says Siegel, "but we keep repeating the wisdom of the sages and ages."

Siegel includes Norman Vincent Peale among those sages and recommends his book, The Power of Positive Thinking . You may already know I'm a big fan of Dr. Peale's; his Positive Imaging is a great primer on the Law of Attraction, especially for those who fear it's New Age or "not of God."

You may also know that I believe the Law of Attraction is key in attracting the love and romance (and every other good thing) you deserve.

After lunch on Tuesday, E. and I popped into the Marble Collegiate Church on 5th and 29th Street, where Peale used to be a pastor. I used to walk past it every single day on my way to work and always meant to stop in but never did. On Tuesday, the Director of Media Relations took us around the lovely old church and gave us its history.

As for my own book recommendations, right now I'm reading Searching for the Sound: My Life with the Grateful Dead. I bought it for Peter for Father's Day 2005, and he loved it.

I never liked The Dead when I was in high school; years later, when I met Peter, his passion for them gave me pause. I'd stepped over hundreds of Dead Heads in Penn Station over the years. Few of them appeared to be on the frequent bather's program.

Peter took me to my first Dead show at Madison Square Garden in 1990, and I 'got' them. They were more than "Casey Jones" and "Shakedown Street" and the crap they kept in constant rotation at WNEW-FM. "Terrapin Station," which I heard for the very first time on April 7, 1991, blew my mind.

I've since become a fan of The Dead, especially Phil Lesh. Aside from the amazing music he makes, he comes off as a generous, kind, and genuinely good man.

Our friend, Mike, made a CD of one of Phil's recent shows (historically, The Dead couldn't care less about their fans recording and distributing their music, although I read that some of Jerry Garcia's heirs aren't thrilled about it).

I had it on yesterday at the gas station while Peter filled his ecologically unfriendly beast with petrol. Phil went into his frequently repeated plea for the crowd to consider organ donation. He added, "Every day I pray for the soul of the young man," whose liver now resides in his body.

Brought tears to my eyes.

Peter has just come back from dropping Child One off at a Bat Mitzvah; the other child and I will see Beauty and the Beast at a birthday party at the Downtown Cabaret Theatre this afternoon.

We'll carpool with the Amazing V and her offspring as soon as they get home from church.