Book Review: The Sovereignty Manual - Manuscript Edition
by Ted Crammer
Ninety-six pages total, I promised to review this manuscript and get right back with my comments. I have to confess my report is way overdue. Hereís why:
I just love a book such as this, one that I can understand and appreciate, one that sets me to thinking and looking at the world in subtle, new ways. I particularly enjoy when an author refrains from authoritarian pronouncements and includes the realities of personal experience. In this case, I can only imagine the London of 1942, the daily bombings, the scarcity of food, the English cold, and so on. I often paused at length to absorb and give thought to what I had just read.
I was moving along at my relaxed pace when I got to Chapter Four, Assigning the Correct Responsibility. There I read "Every individual is totally responsible for their own thoughts, reactions and acts." And there I stopped!
I have always accepted this (to greater or lesser degree) and I admit I have heard variations of this statement in other places but this time it hit me like never before. I edged forward and read, "The profound statement above can be used badly or well. It can be used to empower yourself and others . . . ." and then I put the manuscript down for more than six weeks of empowered reflection. "Profound statement" says the author. "No kidding," say I. It appears to me that without the assumption of responsibility there can be no true individuality. That means, to me, no matter how uncommon the person, no matter how weird or outlandish, no matter how one-offish, true individuality is a state that must be married to knowing, willful responsibility. And I am still reviewing the ramifications of this profound statement.
Many years ago I decided it would be a good thing to take up a study of philosophy and the mind. I was one of the first subscribers to the magazine, "Psychology Today" when it was printed on newspaper. The only thing I found of interest was a few of the ads. Someone said "Nietzsche, heís cool," but that route ended in a brick wall. It took me 30 years to really enjoy the simplicity of Lao Tzu. I was going down my list of authors to study when I found Bertrand Russellís History of Western Philosophy. I figured that would be a good starting point. I never finished the book because I kept falling asleep while reading it.
This brings me to The Sovereignty Manual by Enid Vien and what I say next I say with sincerity. This is the one book I wish I had in my possession all those years. Sovereignty, thatís what I sought! Thatís what I wish to maintain. Thatís what I wish for others. This is a working manual worth reading over and over again.