In a world overflowing with self-help books about absolutely nothing, my dear friend Gabrielle Bernstein’s new book Spirit Junkie is a cool drink of mint iced tea on a blazing September day. Like a Band-aid on a wound, balm on the soul, and a breath of fresh air (I’ll cut it out already with the clichés now), Spirit Junkie: A Radical Road to Self-Love and Miracles is about something that really matters.
Many books about spirituality are hard to swallow. Either they’re so tainted by human dysfunction in the form of religious doctrine that you feel like you’re choking down a pill you think must be good for you (but winds up burning your throat). Or they’re so dry and boring it’s like swallowing mothballs.
Spirit Junkie suffers from neither of these afflictions. First off, with the ever-adorable Gabby Bernstein (who has been called “the Carrie Bradshaw of the new millennium”) as the central protagonist, there’s nothing boring about this book. With her signature authenticity, vulnerability, and witty truth, Gabby flings the doors of her heart and soul wide open so you can peer into her party girl, drug-addicted, boy crazy, fearful, anxious past and witness her miraculous transformation into the calm, centered, blissed-out spirit junkie she is today, leaving you to feel like if she can connect spiritually, anyone can – even you.
What if I’m an atheist?
Plus, as a Jewish teacher of A Course In Miracles, Gabby’s version of “spirit” is so accessible, even atheists will find a way to connect using her loose “it’s all good” theology. Never once did I notice the word “God” (except when she told the story of her pilgrimage to see John of God). And although The Course is written first person as Jesus, the big “J” doesn’t get a mention either. Instead, she calls her version of a higher power either “Spirit” or “Ing” (as in “inner guide,” mixed with that thing you add to a verb to make it zing!)
In other words, even if you don’t believe in a higher power outside yourself, you can still tap into the wellspring of the kind of spirituality Gabby teaches. (And if you do believe in a higher power – whether it’s God, Jesus, Allah, Buddha, Quan Yin, Goddess, or Captain Crunch), then you’re golden, and everything you will learn while reading this book will just add icing to your spirit cake.
In other words, there’s something for everyone who wants to heal themselves by deepening their connection to the Divine.
Mostly, it’s about choosing love over fear, which the Course teaches IS the miracle. I’ve been a student of the Course myself, and I get this concept. But it wasn’t until reading Gabby’s book that I really felt this concept.
Every time I let fear take over – fear of failure, fear of being attacked, fear of success, fear of financial disaster, fear of winding up alone – whatever form my Gremlin takes at any given moment – I am failing to choose love, failing to have faith, failing to demonstrate my 1000% belief that I am held, supported, nurtured, and adored by a Divine spirit so infinitely loving that all of my needs are always met, exactly as they’re supposed to be, in divine timing, according to the Master Plan.
Every time I choose fear over love, I am choosing anxiety, worry, guilt, shame, jealousy, and neediness.
Every time I choose love and send my Gremlin to time out, I choose inner peace and serenity.