Thursday, August 19, 2021

The Soul of an Octopus - Book Review

The Soul of an Octopus
Oh! From start to finish, The Soul of an Octopus had me utterly mesmerized. Such wonder. I continue to find myself in the awest state of awe (and if that isn't a word, I hereby declare it).

Who knew this creature was so magnificent in every way?  Well, Wilson knew.  And Bill, along with Scott and everyone who had the enormous privilege of intimate engagement with Athena, Octavia, Karma, and Kali.  And now, every single one of us who accepts the invitation to be wowed, and wooed, and wonderized will know.

There is plenty to give rise to a constant state of astonishment.  Three hearts for starters.  Eight arms that function like brains.  A kaleidoscopic flashing of stunning colors and patterns—dizzying in speed and intensity.  

Suction power beyond belief.  Just imagine a quarter ton of lifting and pulling capacity in one tiny body (all contained in small suckers that can untie delicate knots, unscrew lids, manipulate intricate puzzle parts, and discern your body chemistry).  

Then, there is the escapist element.  To be the Houdini of all Houdinis is something quite spectacular.  Give an octopus an inch of opportunity and that octo will, impossibly, ooze through the tiniest of gaps with a fluidity that should be impossible.  Should be.  But isn't.

This is much more than a read.  Truly, to enter into the Soul of an Octopus is to find oneself deep-diving into the lost paradise of Atlantis.  It is a portal into great mystery, majesty, and yes, I admit, there will be mortality.  Life demands it.

From the tanks of the New England Aquarium, to exhilarating open water octopus encounters, breathtaking moments will find you, move you, and capture your heart.  

Which brings us back to the three hearts...

More than anything, I was struck by how encounters with an octopus transformed all she held in thrall: a despairing autistic teen who had recently lost her best friend to suicide; an aquarist with a wife in hospice; a developmentally different twin who exulted in being liked by Karma.  

But wait—how can an invertebrate stir such emotions, such obsession, such desire to connect at the deepest of levels?  What is this?  Is this a soul connection?

Ah, now we are asking questions that have no neat and tidy answers.  Yet, these are questions that bring us beyond ourselves.  No matter the viewpoint, and there are plenty of perspectives regarding what constitutes soul, to embrace that there is more to this oceanic creature than meets the eye is to embrace a deeper sense of ourselves in relationship to that magnificent mystery.  

An expansion of consciousness can happen in that space between the knowing and the not knowing (if, like the octopus, we become fluid enough to flow through the impossibly possible).  

I encourage you to dive deep into this wonderland.  I consider The Soul of an Octopus to be one of the most exquisite books I have read this year.  Highly recommended.









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18 comments:

  1. Your beautifully descriptive phrases, your excitement over this book, the wonder of it all is definitely convincing me that "The Soul of an Octopus is a book I need to read. Thank you, Diana.

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    1. I'm glad you could feel all of that in and between my words. It's why I write.

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  2. Well Diana, I loved octopi before but now I like them even more. You really know how to make a book come to life in a review and I'm adding this one to my must read list too! There is so much about the animal world that we have no clue about and can't understand. One thing is certain, we are all connected somehow in our spirits. Of that there is no doubt in my mind or heart!

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    1. Yes... we are all connected. That is the heart (or hearts) of this book. Once we realize this, life takes on a deeper meaning.

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  3. Wow, what a review! I don't believe I have ever read a more eloquent description of an octopus. I know they are magnificent creations, as is much that is hidden in the ocean. I look forward to reading the testimonies of these few individuals who have been blessed to call an octopus their friend.

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    1. Thank you! Yes... there is such magnificence to be discovered... to yet be known. May we spend our days in search of it.

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  4. I have been in love with octopi for a very long time and your review made me want to stop everything I'm doing to go read this book. Your way with words is a wonder! I think you should write a book of your own. Thanks for the review!

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    1. Aww... your affirmation means the world to me. You inspire me to write that book. Thank you for that gift.

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  5. Diana dear, your incredibly evocative and eloquent review of this book is as enthralling as its subject. What a gift you have! I am so grateful to you for sharing it. This book has just shot up to the top of my must-read list, thanks to you. 💗

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    1. I believe this is your aquarium. Perhaps you can experience the book live and in person. Thank you for believing in me (and potential gifts that wish to rise to the surface). Grateful!

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  6. This sounds like an incredible book. I have to choose this one for someone I know, as a I gift. Your review has me hooked on this one. Thanks so much for the introduction, otherwise I'd never had known about it.

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    1. Always happy to spread wonder. Too good to keep to myself.

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  7. WOW!!! What a review...you certainly know how to sell a book. This sounds amazing. Another book for my to read list. Thanks for the great review.

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  8. Wow what an enthralling review!I love your beautiful and moving description of the octopus and the understanding of the deep soul level connection possible between living creatures in this book. I love nature and all creatures of the earth and oceans and whenever you are privileged to feel that connection, even for a second, it is the most beautiful, exquisite moment.Thank you for your wonderful and eloquent review, I know I would love this book.

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    1. I deeply appreciate your kind comments and your love for nature in all of its glory. Truly, it is a profound privilege to experience those connections... those exquisite moments of beauty and awe. I believe this book will speak to you.

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  9. brilliant book shows the web of life and how we are connected.

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    1. Yes... and it is those connections... that web... that is the very life of life.

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