The pickpocket dilemma

A year and a half ago, I published a self-help book called The Inner Gym, where I used workout analogies to illustrate how happiness can grow from exercising the right "inner" muscles.

From time to time I check the Amazon page to see if any new reviews have been posted. Well, I recently got my first negative review, which was titled, "Light is a fraud." And the guy goes on to explain how I'm operating a big money-making scam.

I understand how these kinds of reviews come with the territory of putting yourself out there, and I actually saw it as a badge of honor that someone cared enough to go through the trouble of writing it.

Curiously, I checked other more well-known self-help books to see what the haters had to say about them, and sure enough they had all amassed multiple 1-star reviews:

The Power of Now - "One of the worst books I've ever read!"

The Alchemist - "Worst novel ever"

Autobiography of a Yogi - "Useless"

Be Here Now - "Mumbo Jumbo"

It was laughable, and equally relieving, to see how those deeply transformative books were also dismissed as trash by several reviewers, many of whom took the time to outline point-by-point why the books were so awful.

It actually reminded me of a Sufi proverb that I read years ago in Ram Dass' Be Here Now: "If a pickpocket meets a Saint, all he sees are pockets."

Light Watkins