Florence Scovel Shinn: The Game of Life and How To Play It Audiobook!

Florence Scovel Shinn: The Game of Life and How To Play It Audiobook!

Hi everyone! As I mentioned in an earlier post, I was going to begin reading aloud a bit more on my YouTube channel, and since then, I’ve completed a few more books.

In this particular post, I want to talk about “The Game of Life and How to Play It,” a book by Florence Scovel Shinn, an early New Thought writer who actually had begun her career as a book illustrator. If you read my post about my reading of her later book, “The Power of the Spoken Word you may recall that I read the book and divided it into 9 separate videos – 1 per chapter.

After I completed that project, my good friend Martin (who has contributed here at Casedge.com on occasion) kept mentioning that he would REALLY like it if I would read “The Game of Life and How to Play It” – also by Florence Scovel Shinn.

He mentioned it so frequently that a couple of months ago, I finally dug in my heels and did it.

Florence Scovel Shinn’s First Book

I didn’t realize it until I had begun searching for the book, but “The Game of Life and How to Play It” was Florence’s first book, originally published in 1925. As I read the book through for the first time, I was astonished at how many “ah ha” moments I had. Although I am not a newcomer to New Thought writings, I was struck by how intuitive and wise Florence was.

In fact, as I began narrating the book, I had to stop frequently so that I could take notes on some of the points that stood out in each chapter.

As a result (and also by request) I’ll be creating additional videos containing affirmations based on Florence’s work. Indeed, I’ve already created a few! I’ll include those in a future post, but you can already see what I’ve got put together in this playlist.

As was the case with The Power of the Spoken Word, I initially split the book into 1 video per chapter. In this case, there were 10 chapters, so 10 separate videos.

One Long-Playing Reading: Approx 2 Hours

One thing kept bugging me though, and that was whether or not I might be losing listeners by only reading one chapter at a time. So this time, although there are still 10 separate videos, I also created a long-playing video wherein I read the entire book in one video. This means that someone can listen to the whole book in a single sitting if they so choose. It runs just over 2 hours, so it isn’t an unrealistic idea that a few people might enjoy it. I’ll include that video here in this post!

With that said, I also created a play list for the 10 separate chapters here.

Listen to “The Game of Life and How to Play It

I have to say that I truly do enjoy reading these books! I hope you enjoy hearing them!

The Voice – A Life-Changing Moment

The Voice – A Life-Changing Moment

Before I begin narrating this truly life-changing moment that I experienced in or around 1995, I need to acknowledge a few important people. First, my friend Barbara Tremblay Cipak (no relation, although I wish there was one!) really just gave me the "nudge" and courage to post it. The other day, she really put herself out there by publishing a short fictional story that truly moved me. 

Barbara had said that she had never written fiction, but felt a strong urge to move outside her comfort zone and go for it. Because of this, I decided that I had been sitting on this little story for long enough.

And even though it kind of "exposes" me in a way I have let very few people see, I figure, what the heck! If Barbara can put HERSELF out there, so can I! (By the way, Barbara's story is lovely - you can read it here: "His Gift Was Knowing.")

Finally, I want to also thank my dear friend and spiritual mentor, Roy Posner, who has encouraged and furthered my understanding about what "Surrender" and "Opening Up to the Divine" really means. Oh, if I'd only known years ago what I know now... 

Ok... Here is the story of the moment that pushed me over the edge of my mediocre life, and head first into the spiritual journey I had been avoiding.

There is much more to be written on this topic, but the story begins here.

And yes, it really did happen.

The Voice

“Now will you let me take over?”

The question was directed at me, and pretty much demanded a “Yes” or “No” answer.  But, I was too stunned to answer. Lifting my head from my tear-covered hands, I looked around.

There was no one there. 

I glanced at John, who was in the adjoining office, and said, “Did you hear that?”

“Hear what?” he asked, with a quizzical look. Wisely, he had left me alone with my tears. There really wasn’t anything he could do at the moment to comfort me.

“That voice… a voice…” I didn’t quite know how to explain this voice that had just asked me if I would let… Him? Her? It? …if I would let Something… take over.

I had been weeping, having finally accepted – after a long period of denial – that one of my “ex’s” had cheated on me during our relationship. I had never fully believed it. Surely the evidence was mere coincidence. But that morning, just before I heard “the voice,” I had been presented with irrefutable evidence that no one could explain away.

John, who would eventually become my now-cherished husband, came back into the room, and saw the cassette tape I had found when sorting through my box of music. 

The tape wasn’t mine, and it wasn’t John’s either. A loving note written on it referred to certain memories, and once I popped it into the cassette player to hear what was on it, it became clear that it belonged to the ex. It had probably been put into my collection mistakenly when we were splitting up.

Now, John quietly left the room to allow me time to process this new realization.

Back in the day, I was a praying kind of gal. I prayed to some guy named “God” who I thought sat up on a cloud, ready to smite the wicked and reward the righteous.

I couldn’t fathom why this “God” guy wouldn’t smite my ex. 

But, on this particular day, I completely bottomed out emotionally and gave up. Some call it “surrender.”

I let go of trying to figure out what had happened in that failed relationship. I gave up trying to explain away all the evidence that bellowed, “Hey! Hello there! Knock, knock! HE CHEATED!”

All that was left that Saturday morning was the feeling that I had completely drained myself of every last bit of my will.

And that was when I heard “the voice.”

It sounded like a real voice, as though someone was in front of me or sitting beside me – or behind me – it was hard to place where it came from. But I could hear it just as clearly as I hear my fingers tapping out this story on my keyboard.

I still needed to answer the question.

Very quietly, I whispered, “Yes…. Yes, I will let you take over.”

And then came the peace. Peace and forgiveness washed through me and the moment was over.

Just like that.

Now, I would love to be able to say that at that moment, the sun came out, birds began chirping and heavenly trumpets filled the air. I’d love to tell you that the “ex” came around, wringing his hands and begging my forgiveness. I’d love to tell you that “the voice” said, “Ok, then, I’m on it! You just sit back and relax now…”

I cannot. All I can tell you is that in that moment, I was enveloped by a sense of peace, and my focus shifted.

Shift in Focus

It took a while, but I can honestly say that I forgave the ex. Totally, 100% forgave. Even today, as I type in January of 2021, when I think of him (which is happening quite a bit right now since I’m telling this story), I REALLY DO have only good feelings and well-wishes for his happiness. And, I daresay, “love.” Not romantic love, but a love that springs from a place deep inside and says, “You are my brother, and I love you.”

One thing was for certain: I no longer had time to think about smiting him. I became far too involved in learning more about this “voice” that seemingly came from nowhere, and everywhere.

The journey to learn more led me to the path that is now my life. I awakened to the possibility that there was more to life than living in fear of judgment if I’m bad, or hope for reward if I’m good.

Books on spirituality replaced fiction on my shelves. And, as many of my readers here know, these shelves are now filled with the teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda, Jesus, The Mother (Mirra Alfassa), Roy Posner, Neville Goddard, Joseph Murphy, Ernest Holmes, Joe Dispenza, and dozens of New Thought writers, personal development authors, and everything in between. 

Autobiography of a Yogi and Other Books

Exploring alternative theories on God and the Universe became almost an obsession. I wouldn’t stop until something “clicked” and felt right to me.

No More Smiting

Changes and progress were somewhat subtle at times, and like a whack upside the head at other times. For example, when I came to understand that God, or the Universe (or whatever you choose to call It) meant me no harm, I had to admit that if God meant ME no harm, then God couldn’t possibly mean anyone ELSE any harm, either.

So, there would be no more smiting going on from my end.

Time went on. I married John. We moved. As the internet and YouTube came along, spiritual videos replaced music videos (well, most of the time!). Guilt trips faded away while love, forgiveness and joy took their place.

FREEDOM IN RESPONSIBILITY

One of the most profound changes came in understanding that there is tremendous freedom in accepting responsibility for one’s life. In my case, I came to recognize that just about every single thing in my life – including the experience with the “ex” – was the result of my own choices. And this realization made it remarkably easy for me to forgive.

It didn’t matter what the situations were; somehow, they were the result of some type of choice that I made. I chose to be with someone. I chose to take one job or another that didn’t work out. I chose to drink too much or to exercise too little. No one forced me to do any of these things. This is a superficial look at what is a far more involved topic, but that’s the initial gist of it.

One of the liberating things about coming to this understanding was the knowledge that I am always free to make another, different choice if the results I’m experiencing don’t suit me.

I do not suggest that I could have consciously made a choice when I was a baby, for example, that would have resulted in my not needing eyeglasses by the age of 8.

I do suggest, however, that I can now make conscious decisions to alter my own life. I cannot make choices or decisions for anyone else’s life. This also means that I cannot change others. I can only change myself. I can choose love and forgiveness over fear or anger. I can choose to see the best in someone, or the worst. Kind of like the “glass half full” vs “glass half empty.”

That is a huge relief in itself. I had spent so much precious time in the past wishing and hoping that someone or something external to me would change, that I did not see the one thing I could change. Me.

But it gets even better. There is so much freedom that comes in releasing the feeling that we can change someone, or are responsible for the happiness or success of another person. Not that I don’t want others to be happy or successful; in fact, I do want others to be happy and successful. Wildly successful!

Because, on this journey I have come to learn that what I want for another is directly reflected back at me; therefore, I only wish for another that which I would wish for myself.

In short, it’s the “golden rule,” isn’t it?

A Few Lessons I've Learned

Finally, a few other things I have learned on this path include some general principles that seem to never fail. And that is to understand:

- Either I will control my thoughts and actions, or they will control me. It's about my taking responsibility for everything. No blame, no foul, no anger - just nodding at the "is-ness" of my situation, knowing that I have made choices (consciously or unconsciously) in the past, and I can make new ones going forward.

- That to struggle and resist is futile; that if I “push against” something, it pushes back. (THIS is where TOTAL SURRENDER comes into play.)

- That when I feel, deep in my heart, that life is always on my side while at the same time never being against anyone else, the journey will be that much more pleasant for all of us. (Non-resistance again)

- That the more I feel like something's "about me" the more it's my ego speaking. And yet conversely, the more I allow myself to "let go" of some perceived self-importance, the more I recognize that I'm just a mere speck in the Universe - and the feeling of utter astonishment and humility takes over, and I'm pretty much brought to my knees in awe.

- That if I “let go” and fully SURRENDER, and let whatever It is “take over,” (the Divine Force or whatever you wish to call it), and that it isn’t about "giving up" or "quitting;" it is about allowing a whole lot of good into my life.

There is so very much more that I have yet to put voice and words to.

But it all started when I answered the question posed by “the voice.”

“Yes…Yes, I will.”

A Little Inspirational Boost

A Little Inspirational Boost

Hi there! It's been quite a year for pretty much everyone! Frankly, if you had told me only 14 months ago that we would be, faced with treating cancer in my family, faced with keeping safe during a global pandemic, a loss of beloved family members, and loss of work and income all in those next 14 months, I'm not sure I would have 1) believed it, or 2) felt strong enough to deal with it.

But, here we are, still here and still feeling incredibly grateful for all we DO have. Yes, there have been some health challenges (but it isn't the end of the world) - and yet, there are GOOD things to report.

No Wine

I am happy to report from my own end that a personal challenge in my own life has been going really well in that I haven't had any alcohol in well over 14 months as of this writing (10/21/20). 

Mind you, I never came outright and said that I was QUITTING drinking; rather, I recognized that I struggled with it, and decided to simply stop for a while. 

How did I stop? I can only tell you that I've pictured it for so long, and imagined how GOOD I would feel without any wine for so long that I guess something finally "sunk in" and it just happened. I just "stopped" one day, and so far - no matter how trying some of our challenges have been - I've felt so much better WITHOUT drinking, that I just haven't had the desire for it (very often anyway). 

It's almost like the Universe sorta KNEW I was going to need as much strength as I could muster in order to work through the events of this last year+.

Weight Loss

Another thing that seemed to "just happen" was that I dropped over 40 pounds of excess weight (or, as Genevieve Behrend so eloquently puts it in one description in a chapter of her fabulous book, "Your Invisible Power" - "excess avoirdupois" which sounds far more elegant than "excess fat"). That's another thing that I had been imagining for a number of years. (Although omitting empty alcohol calories helped, it really was other dietary changes that suddenly came out of the blue that really helped!)

By the way, I have had a request to read "Your Invisible Power" at my YouTube channel. I'll tackle this project once I'm home in Florida (where I recently moved - also a big change this past year).  

Life definitely has led us on a bit of a journey, especially this past year. Things seem to have sped up - and that's not just because I've gotten older that it seems this way! 

(In case you are interested in seeing my personal progress, which I really do feel good about, here are 2 pictures - the one on the top is me a couple of years ago - 2018 - while still drinking a lot (I know, it isn't pretty!), and weighing 40 pounds more, and the below is just a couple of months ago! And, at age 61, I definitely have to say I'm feeling a LOT better in the new skin.)

Me, in 2018, before really getting serious about having a healthier life.
Me, in summer 2020, after losing 40+ pounds

FOCUS ON SPIRITUAL PRACTICES

It just seems as though the more I practice the teachings I've come to love, the more things happen. 

Back when I started this blog with my friend Martin, I had a simple page of "Law of Attraction manifestations." Since then, both our understandings of universal laws has expanded.

Martin, for his part, has discovered an insatiable passion for sharing his and his family's interest in drag-racing. You couldn't stop him now if you tried! (If you are curious, check out his channel here! You'll see what I mean.) At first glance, you might not think of car racing as a "spiritual" pursuit. But, if you knew Martin, you would know that everything he does now is based out of his own spiritual practices and meditations, and that he was most certainly led to this vocation. 

For my part, I have finally come to realize and accept that one of the reasons my life has always seemed "different" to me - is due to an undeniable "pull" to understand life, or, more precisely, the FORCE behind life. Just "existing" simply is not enough for me. The older I get, the stronger the pull to better understand and work with the spiritual workings of life. 

Anyway, spiritual practices have become of utmost importance to me.

CONSECRATION

There is a relatively little-known practice that is called "consecration" that I've incorporated into pretty much every waking moment. I'm not talking about "consecration" in the way it may be used in religious practices (e.g. as in the Christian belief of declaring bread and/or wine to represent the body and blood of Jesus Christ - source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Real_presence_of_Christ_in_the_Eucharist).

Rather, "consecration" is an everyday practice used by devotees of Sri Aurobindo and his spiritual partner "The Mother" (Mira Alfassa), and Sri Karmayogi, wherein everything we do is "offered up" to the Divine, the "Spiritual Force." I have increasingly found consecration to be an absolutely essential add-on to all my spiritual practices - whether using techniques taught by the mystic Neville Goddard or self-help author Earl Nightingale, or biblical teacher Jesus, or more scientifically-oriented Joe Dispenza, and others. 

In fact, the practice of consecration has become so ingrained in my day-to-day life over this last year, that I've begun a specific playlist at YouTube (here) devoted to it (with full permission by author and devotee of The Mother and Karmayogi, Roy Posner).

There is far too much to discuss when it comes to consecration than I can write about in this update. Hopefully you will take a look at the videos I just mentioned. As of this writing I think I've dedicated 4 videos about it!

READING ALOUD AT YOUTUBE

For some reason, the "reading bug" has caught me, and I'm finding myself wanting to read certain books and inspirational passages and quotes on YouTube. Going forward, that's going to be a big part of the channel. I've had enough viewers request this now that I need to take the requests seriously. 

Someone made a very kind mention about my reading voice (and that really made my day!). What I didn't mention in the video, but will here, is that to keep a reading sounding "smooth," I do extensive edits. For example, I find myself stumbling along on occasion, and will suddenly lose my place or have a few "uhs" or "ummms" in there, or I mispronounce a word or name. I do my very best to correct such errors. 🙂 

Hopefully my readings will improve as time goes on!

My friend, Roy Posner (the author who is allowing me to publicly read and share his work), suggested that I tell a personal "success story" when I have one. So, whenever I notice a success that I can truly attribute to my spiritual practice, I have begun to share that!

Anyway, I wanted to give you an update about what has been going on, and where we are heading at the moment! 

Inspirational Quotes By Denzel Washington and Steve Harvey On Faith and Success

Inspirational Quotes By Denzel Washington and Steve Harvey On Faith and Success

I just heard a couple inspirational quotes from Steve Harvey and Denzel Washington that have to do with faith and success which I loved.

I felt they were a bit similar, and was thinking of a place where I could put them where I could come back and re-read them, and realized that this would make a nice blog post.

Here are the quotes.

Steve Harvey: Your imagination is the evidence of things not seen. When you imagine stuff, it’s God showing you a preview of what He has for you.

Denzel Washington: True desire in the heart, for anything good, is God’s proof to you, sent beforehand, to indicate that it’s yours already.

That itch that you have to be whatever it is you wanna be; that itch, that desire for good, is God’s proof to you sent already, to indicate that it’s yours; you already have it.

I thought these were both rather powerful, and personally want to keep them in mind and return to read them from time to time, and I hope you get something out of them.

These are actual quotes that I heard them say, as opposed to quotes I just found on the internet.

Here is the video where Denzel says his quote, and he goes further into it:

 

Listen to Florence Scovel Shinn – Power of the Spoken Word Audio!

Listen to Florence Scovel Shinn – Power of the Spoken Word Audio!

Hi all! I really enjoy reading classic New Thought books, and decided to read Florence Scovel Shinn's classic work, "The Power of the Spoken Word" which was published in 1945. Although the language is a little old-fashioned the message is timeless.

On a whim, I thought that because I love listening to audio books myself, perhaps readers might enjoy hearing the book read aloud as well. So I did just that, and posted the results to my YouTube channel.

I wound up making 9 separate videos - one for each chapter - to make it easier to listen to at your convenience.

Florence Scovel Shinn

More than one of my subscribers have contacted me with a couple of requests:

  • One request is that I put the PDF of the book here on CASEDGE.com - and I'm editing that right now!  July 2020 UPDATE: IT'S DONE! See it HERE - totally free for you to read, download and enjoy!

So it won't be long before I have it in PDF here at the site - it will be a free download. 

(BTW: The book IS available on Amazon if you want to buy a hard copy - see it here.)

  • The other request I've had is to continue recording, and reading more books! I'll do that - at least with some shorter books and/or at least chapters of some longer books when I feel really drawn to the material.

Anyway, as I mentioned, this wound up being 9 separate videos - my YouTube channel is HERE...

But, if you would like to jump right to the 1st video in the series, either click here for Chapter 1, or click on the picture of the video below! I really hope you enjoy the reading, and please stay tuned, because I promise that I WILL have the PDF available for you here very soon! 🙂 

The Power of the Spoken Word by Florence Scovel Shinn - CHAPTER 1

Click this image to jump to the first chapter of the reading!