Appreciating Differences - Jack Falt - Ottawa area, Ontario, Canada

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Book Review by Jack Falt

Gault, R. Danielle, The Well-Tempered Life, Oakville, ON: Self-Published, 2004, ISBN 0-9731130-1-4, 114 pp, references.

This is the second book by Gault and it continues the themes begun in the first book. The first book focuses more on the authorís personal journey, while this one looks at more practical advice on how to implement the ideas. The author brings her psychological training and interest in holistic health together to give guidance on how to live a well-tempered life.

The book is structured around the concept of the four elements: Air, Fire, Water and Earth. As the author describes them. It is my opinion that they roughly correspond to the four temperaments: Air - NT, Fire - SP, Water - NF, and Earth - SJ. The author gives a short quiz to help you determine the dominant element in your life. As a practical example the author uses Elemental Personality Theory (EPT) to show how to handle problems such as unwanted weight gain.

Next the author moves on to introduce yoga and how it relates to the chakra system of the body, giving examples of basic yoga movements. Basic reflexology of the ear, hand and feet are also explained, completing the first part of the book.

In Part 2, the author moves on to combine these ideas in a chapter for each of the four elements. Each chapter describes what each element is like as expressed as a personality, and also looks at the pitfalls of the element. Yoga exercises and reflexology practices are prescribed to bring about about a mature expression of the element. The goal of these practices are: the mature Air element brings about focused attention; the mature Fire element brings about vigilance; the mature Water element brings about focused reflection and imagination; and the mature Earth element brings about discernment.

The author closes by describing her own journey towards a well-tempered life, how she discovered psychological theories and holistic practices that enhanced her life.

This is a book that is quite readable; but I would suggest to get the most out of it, it would be a good basis for a group study project, taking the time to discuss and actually practise the recommendations. At very least, take the time yourself to try the ideas out and think them through to learn how they can be applied to your own life.

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