The Circle of Life: A Guide for Conscious Living in a World of Chaos
by Frank Natale
Morgan Road

"When we overcome the fear of having nothing, of truly letting go of everything, a trust in life itself manifests the peace we seek."

Published posthumously, Natale's work is a roadmap teaching readers to use love and compassion as armor against limitations like fear, conventional thinking, and numerous other vulnerabilities, ultimately stressing that knowledge on the mental, physical, and especially spiritual level is locked within us. True self-discovery is the best teacher. While the text is imbued with valuable lessons, it is the combination of the author's willful sharing of his own authentic experiences, such as growing up in Brooklyn and an innate ability to simplify complex topics (especially death, energy meditations, and the transformational rites of passage) that makes Natale's work both universally relatable and highly applicable.

Perhaps the most intriguing concept the book emphasizes is that nearly all things, whether they be seasons, moon cycles, books with a beginning, middle, and end, or even the four triads of experience (preparation, initiation, integration, and realization), are circular by nature. Yet, fundamentally, humanity lives linear lives governed by cause and effect, action and reaction. Aside from his personal experiences, Natale's knowledge of mythology as it integrates to the circle of life is reflected through references to Jason and the Argonauts and Moses returning with the Ten Commandments. In many ways, the thirteen rites of passage apply to all life. Many, if not all of these elements are integral to the most iconic personas—fiction and nonfiction—throughout human history.

Readers will encounter a range of wisdom, gems that take them from creation myths and Plato to the Ayahuasca psychedelic shaman experience and the sacred meditative chanting of "Om Namah Shivaya." Truly, the author's remarkable life experiences and mentors like the prolific Swami Satchidananda are, in their own right, awe-inspiring. However, Natale's discourse on shame, connecting with our masculine and feminine side, and exploration of forgiveness render this an effort worthy of a seat on every bookshelf.

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