When the Willow Tree Whispered: The 1000 Corners of My Heartspace

Jyotsna Ahuja

Publisher: Archway Publishing Pages: 278 Price: (paperback) $24.99 ISBN: 9781665745291 Reviewed: February, 2024 Author Website: Visit »

In When the Willow Tree Whispered, the author shares poetry and spiritual insight spoken to her by “The Voice” as she “sat with my Higher Self under the Wisdom Willow,” meditating on how to heal from grief and despair.

Named Leila at birth, the author uses the pseudonym Jyotsna Ahuja, translated as “The White Space.” At seven, she watched her father die suddenly as they celebrated a family wedding in Jaipur, India. The trauma affected her deeply, causing years of anguish and self-hatred. At the point of suicide, she began seeking meaning and peace, studying spirituality of every kind. Recognizing she had been receiving “sacred communication between the Consciousness and me, or what I refer to as The Voice” from childhood, she finally tuned in.

The basis of The Voice’s lessons is Love and Wisdom. The author covers a variety of thoughts in brief prose pieces and poems that deal with “vindictive sarcasm,” righteousness, retaining personal power, and many other challenges. The Voice chimes in after the poems with a short message, such as, “Breathe easily. Speak gently. Tread lightly” and “Every prayer is also a wish granted, if you know where to look.”

The poetry here is simple and prosaic, as in “I kept searching for meaning in my life./ Everything felt like Nothing/ Until I befriended/ Both within me,/ Now I search no more.” The prose is sometimes easy to grasp but other times confounding: “Please, do not choose yourself to gain with a short term perspective at ‘winning’ and so create a ‘loser’ in the other, who is a reflection of yourself.”

Another challenge is that the author references an alphabet soup of spiritual ideas and teachings, including Zen, synchronicity, The Wisdom of the Tao, and the Yoga of Love. Reading snippets about everything from Buddhism to Theosophy quickly becomes overwhelming.

Readers will find thought-provoking ideas here, but such issues create an uneven offering overall.

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