Sane New World: Taming the Mind.
GROUP MEMBER REVIEW:
Sane New World isn’t about bipolar disorder but it is useful for those of us interested in exploring the mind, examining what and how we think and why.
Ruby Wax encourages us to be curious about our minds. She presents a convincing argument, explaining that curiosity is how our brains grow; as our neurons connect, we become smarter.
Wax examines the science behind mental health in an interesting and absorbing way, explaining the chemicals that make us who we are in part two of the book. Exercises on taming the mind are included in Sane New World and Ruby Wax is a big advocate of mindfulness, explaining that with mindfulness practise, you eventually tame, calm and befriend your mind.
Told with her trademark humour and wit, I particularly enjoyed Ruby Wax’s list of the hierachy of Western Wants. It begins simply with food, water and shelter and ends with a private jet and meeting Oprah. I also enjoyed reading about her childhood, her relationship with her mother and how this affected her mental health as an adult.
Sane New World is peppered with funny and touching examples from Ruby Wax’s own life. One slight criticism I have is that I’d have liked to have read more indepth examples of her experiences and how they affected her.
Her advice towards the end of the book is certainly worth consideration. She writes: “It’s our ability to regulate our attention, reduce our reactive nature and cultivate positive emotions, that points the way to health and happiness.”
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Copies in our library:
Bipolar Edinburgh maintains a small library of books, CDs and DVDs. To borrow from the library you need to have attended at least two group meetings and registered your contact information with the group facilitators. We normally allow people to borrow items for two months, but please bring them back earlier if possible.