Ripeness is All by Henry Carrier
Part memoir, part spiritual guide, Henry Carrier’s Ripeness is All: A Boomer’s Mirthful Spiritual Journey is the kind of book that tackles a lot of content, and succeeds in delivering a powerful, unifying message. A self-professed boomer, Carrier describes his life, from his years as a young child, all the way to the present day, sharing his insights in wisdom on some of the most important decades in human history. He covers events such as Vietnam and the Civil Rights movement, and shifts in perspective like counterculture and postmodernism. While a great deal of the book focuses on religion and spirituality, as Carrier aims to present a contemporary understanding of religion that he hopes will appeal to both believers and non-believers, there are a lot of intimate moments in the book that are personal memories Carrier decides to share with the reader. Such instances include the effect that using marijuana had on his psyche, how he was corrected online by a stranger about his ideas on what the story of Noah’s ark truly meant, and descriptions from his trip to India, just to name a few.
This book is very wide in its scope, but somehow, Carrier is able to bring all of the different elements together to create an entertaining and mostly delightful read. There are times when the constant mention of religion and theology may rub some readers the wrong way, especially if they are non-believers, but the way Carrier presents his ideas is never abrasive. He does not shy away from questioning commonly held Christian beliefs, instead trying as we all do, to understand the world we live in, and how religion, and the potential for an afterlife affects our every day experience. In a way, the subtitle for this book also explains that the reader will be going on a ‘spiritual journey’ as they follow along with the words that Carrier has written. There is a lot of content here, and although at times it can be somewhat overwhelming, as for the most part all of these stories and anecdotes come from the mind of one man, it is an interesting tale that he is telling. If you are keen on exploring ideas on spirituality, religion, culture, and politics from a different perspective than your own, then this may just be the book for you.
To purchase a copy of the book, click here to find it on Amazon.