Review of "Gaia Eros" by Jesse Wolf Hardin
Gaia Eros: Reconnecting to the Magic and Spirit of Nature
Jesse Wolf Hardin
New Page Books
Non-Fiction, New Age Spirituality
Background of the Review
This is a review of the book, "" that was written by Jesse Wolf Hardin and published in 2004 by New Page Books. Prior to publication, the publisher sent me a copy of the book and requested that I review the book and provide feedback regarding its contents. My review of the book addresses the simple beauty of the author's perspective regarding green spiritual traditions, but it also holds the author accountable for his failings to provide academically correct information when referencing various anthropological and historical facts. It is my sincere hope that this book review will provide an accurate summary of the book's quality and content. Gaia Eros: Reconnecting to the Magic and Spirit of Nature
About the Author
"Gaia Eros" is written by Jesse Wolf Hardin, an artist, musician, and writer, who lives in New Mexico and cares for the Earth Spirituality Project and Sweet Medicine Women’s Center, a wildlife sanctuary, where he makes him home. He is practices a very eclectic form of earth based Gaian spirituality.
Jesse Wolf Hardin has written a variety of books about green spiritual traditions, herbalism, and other related topics; however, some of the books span other genres such as those that focus on motorcycles, guns, and the ghosts of the American Wild West. He has also a percussionist for the music group, GaiaTribe, which feature the author's music talents.
New Nature Spirituality
In this most recent book, Jesse Wolf Hardin focuses on providing a structure for New Nature Spirituality and guidance for understanding and bonding with the earth and the land as Gaia, a living and sentient being. Taught within the pages of this book are the tools for loving and respecting the earth and all denizens who inhabit this planet. It demonstrates the interconnectivity and wholeness of the earth and all humanity and calls into light our relationship to the earth and the need for responsible hedonism as a way to honor the earth, each other, and ourselves. By learning to communicate with the earth and improving our relationship with Gaia, we can in turn begin to learn how to communicate with each other and improve our personal relationships.
Earth Centered Eclectic Paganism
The contents of the book describe the mixing of traditions and blood and therefore there is no distinct culture but rather a amalgamation of various cultural segments combined by the author to present his personal perspectives. As stated within the book, this approach allows people from all cultures to be able to find acceptance and understanding; however, it lacks the cohesiveness of a complete spiritual tradition. The reader should be capable of finding merit in the pages of this book as the contents present a mechanism for comprehending global consciousness and fostering harmony among people from diverse backgrounds.
Understanding a Global Green Consciousness
The information presented teaches about the earth in such a way as to make Gestalt psychologist proud. Our individual lives are viewed as part of a complete and complex conscious ecosystem. The book emphasizes the value of the greater green consciousness where the individual functions as only a small component of the whole system. It calls into question the notions of the allegedly civilized mind and the need to reconnect with our more primitive nature. It is a call to not just read the words and understand the sentiment behind them, but to actually touch, feel, and work with the land using all of our senses.
Stewardship of the Earth
With regard to the ancestors and their relationship with the earth, the author neglects to mention that even our ancestors we neglectful of their duties to the earth and that they were sometimes even responsible for destroying the fertility of the land. From the salting of the earth to the overuse of the land, many places still remain inhospitable to any form of flora or fauna today. Instead he focuses on how they lived as a community and depended on each other and the land on which they lived. In this way, the author continuously focuses on the positive aspects of our human history and continuously encourages the reader to consider the whole ecology of the earth and the connectivity that we share with each other and the land.
Balancing Anthropological Facts
Due to the widespread use of various segments of cultural specific information, Jesse Wolf Hardin encounters difficulty preserving accuracy of the information presented when he writes about a particular anthropological fact. For example, his discussion of the Willendorf female figurines assumes that these figures are images of a mother goddess when archaeology suggests that they were manufactured in the same manner as fierce animal figurines of the same time and contained the same exaggerated features. The precise nature of these figures, both of the women and the animals, is unknown. To assume that they are images of the goddess demonstrates that he does not necessarily possess a deep understanding of the full context of the information that he is discussing.
Loving the Earth Mother
What this book does teach is to love the earth as our mother and to take care of her. It also instructs us to give and receive pleasure in all forms, and that love and sensuality are not always sexual. We should live each day experiencing the childish delight and discovery of the world around us and also to fulfill our responsibility as the caretakers of the earth. This is a wonderful book for environmentalists who might share different religious beliefs but desire to work together to care for the earth. The written words of Jesse Wolf Hardin speak to the hearts of those that can still see and understand the sacred relationship between the land and the people.
Gaia Eros by Jesse Wolf Hardin
Learn to connect with the Mother Earth and indulge in the hedonistic pleasures of life and love. Perfect for anyone who follows green faiths and earth centered spiritual traditions.
© 2015 Midnight Muse