Book Review: We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For
Happy Sunday! It’s that time of the month… my book review! For January I chose We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For as my book of the month. Please read on for my book review & analysis…
We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For: Inner Light in a Time of Darkness by Alice Walker is an extremely insightful piece of work that combines spirituality, political discussion, meditation, personal experience, and more into a 14-chapter book.
“Wise thoughts for a troubled world.” —Dallas Morning News
“Alice Walker is a muse for our times. It would be easy to say that hers is a voice that calms, but it doesn’t. She touches the soul, and propels us to action. We have been waiting for this book. It is deeply spiritual and fiercely political – a light in a time of darkness.” –Amy Goodman
“A thoughtful and reflective look at life and the search for meaning.” —Booklist
Alice Walker, well-known author and feminist has a slew of awards, honors, and recondition. Including but not limited to: receiving the Pulitzer Prize Award and National Book Award, along with several bestselling books. Her most popular work, The Color Purple, written in 1982 skyrocketed Walker’s career. Walker’s voice throughout The Color Purple illuminated the words on the page, transporting the reader into the life and struggles of the African-American woman, Celie who suffers through abuse from her father, husband, and society as a whole.
I remember reading The Color Purple and being hit with such overwhelming emotion. I recall a vivid memory of thinking— wow, that is the kind of voice I want to have as a writer. Her voice, so strong, so compelling, so true to her characters, and the story she is translating to the reader places you in a completely different state of mind. While We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For is an entirely different type of genre, Walker’s voice is still present, and continues to inspire the reader into a course of action. Her book is seemingly a call to action to all of us to be the change that we wish to see in the world.
While much of Walker’s book carries unique qualities, a special touch she adds is a meditation for the reader at the end of each chapter. I personally was really digging this tiny part of the book, because I’ve been wanting to focus more on awareness and being present in the moment and she made it so easy to even take a few minutes to reset the mind.
“This involved, during meditation, learning to breathe in the pain I was feeling, not to attempt to avoid or flee it. It involved making my heart bigger and bigger just to be able to hold it all. it involve breathing gout relief and happiness for myself and for everyone on Earth who was feeling as miserable as I was.” —Alice Walker, We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For
Walker takes the reader on a journey through her own spiritual awakening while bringing political injustices to the front of our consciousness. She encourages us that in order to push our society forward we have to begin with ourselves. She teaches forgiveness, compassion, patience, love… even to those that we don’t necessary want to give it to. Walker reminds the reader that even though the world we are living in seems overwhelmingly negative and like a place where one small voice cannot make a difference, that it can. It begins with us to bring positivity and light into these darker times.
“‘The pause’— The moment when something major is accomplished and we re so relieved to finally be done with it that we are already y rushing, at least mentally, in The Future…. And we find ourselves required to stop, to sit down, to reflect. this is the time of ‘the pause,’ the universal place of stopping. The universal moment of reflection.” —Alice Walker, We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For
This book came out over 10 years ago, yet as I was reading it I felt like so much of it applied to our current political climate. Which honestly was the most devastating aspect of the book. Walker was writing it as a guide for how to navigate and bring worth a more open and loving future and while there has been hope, change, significant improvements, growth, awareness, and joy over the last decade there definitely feels like we are living in a very different type of America than we used too. Now our world is full of despair and disrespect, I place where intolerance runs rampant and selfishness rules. This book to me felt like it could have been written yesterday.
“The heart enjoys experiencing the liberating feeling of compassion; it expands and flows, as if beaming its own sun upon the world.” —Alice Walker, We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For
If you are looking to find that inner strength, that inspiration to help move you towards action (whether big or small) I would highly recommend Walker’s book. It is one that will bring tears to your eyes, make your heart feel warm, enlighten your mind, and much more. At times it isn’t always the easiest read— she covers hard, deep topics that not everyone wants to hear, but they are important. It is important. Exposing oneself to these types of stories, this history, these opinions is important because it can enable a conversation to begin. We need to start that conversation and continuing having it on a regular basis. To sum up Walker, “We are the ones we have been waiting for.”
“A marvelous thing happens when the body and soul are together, something that is the essence of who we’ve always been, and in our deepest nature still are: we care.” —Alice Walker, We Are The Ones We Have Been Waiting For
Cheers & stay chic!