Every once in awhile I will come across a book that moves me and speaks to my heart so deeply that I wish I could buy a copy of it for everyone I love. Today’s recommended reading Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon’s Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart by James R. Doty, MD is that book.
I initially checked the book out because I wanted to read more New York Times Best Sellers. It had actually been sitting on my ‘to-read’ shelf for a couple of months. One day out of boredom, I decided it was time to get to it and see if it was worth reading all the way through. After 3 days of not being able to put the book down, I finished it and began to tell everyone about it.
As I began to share my love for this book, I realized that I could not give the book the proper justice it deserved. Therefore, if this review, does not push you to read Into the Magic Shop, do yourself a favor and pretend you didn’t read this and get the book instead. I’d be surprised if you don’t become captivated after the first couple of chapters.
Format I Read: Hardcover
There are so many good things about this book that I couldn’t possibly list them all in a concise review. The book is a biography of Dr. Doty’s life. However, it is written in a way where you sometimes feel like you are reading a fictional story. The emotions you experience for the author range from empathy and sadness to shock and contempt. However, in the end it all comes together and you realize what a magical journey he has been on.
Into the Magic Shop mixes science with phenomenons that can only be explained through the belief of a bigger universal force. It is about mindfulness and meditation and the power, both good and bad, that these two things can have in a person’s life. If you have ever felt sorry for yourself or had a dream that you didn’t believe would be achievable because of your circumstances, this book will give you the inspiration to chase those dreams and believe that a fulfilling life could be yours.
The best thing about the book is the connection it makes between the brain and the heart. Most of us believe that the brain is the most powerful organ we have. However, through science and through real life examples, Into the Magic Shop demonstrates that our hearts are the true leaders of our bodies. One of my favorite quotes from the book is: “a heart ignored for too long will always make itself heard.”
The only unfavorable thing I could say about this book is that it will consume you. I literally read it every chance I got. I woke up early to read it, I read it while eating, while doing my business in the bathroom and if I was out I couldn’t wait until I was home so that I could continue reading. I was sad once I finished the book, but also glad because I could go back to living life normally and paying proper attention to my family.
I haven’t always understood the connection between the heart and the mind, but as I’ve been on this journey to live life more intentionally the connection has made itself more and more clear. Similar to Dr. Doty, I had ignored my heart for quite some time. My mind was telling me that I needed to make money and that that was the ultimate goal in order to live a successful life and take care of my family. Because my heart could no longer take the deception my mind was telling me, it spoke up and my life will never be the same again.
If you are ready to learn what it takes to follow your heart, to ignore the doubts and fears you have, to rediscover yourself and your passions, read this book.