What I'm Reading Now: A Return to Love, by Marianne Williamson

Book REview: A Return to Love, by Marianne Williamson | Holistically Inspired Blog

Gut Reaction: This book was absolutely amazing. Every sentence felt like a little gold nugget. This was the third time I had been recommended this book and the first two times, I picked it up, skimmed it and put it down. I was a lot younger then, and terrified of the GOD word. This time, someone whom I trust deeply recommended I read this book, and because of that I set forth.

In the first few pages, Williamson explains that God is just a word, and that it can easily be substituted with love, the universe, divine feminine, really anything that resonates with the reader. With that little sigh of relief, I pushed onward.

Turns out that this book was exactly what I needed. This is now one of my most underlined, dog-eared, noted-up books I have ever read. Not only that, but I usually carry this book around with me in my bag for inspiration. If something throws me “off” throughout the day, this book has great potential to help me get back on track. It just goes to show that sometimes the more you resist something, the more you may need it.

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My gems: This book pulled  a lot of its own gems from A Course in Miracles, which, from what I understand, is a pretty extensive course for spiritual growth and development. What I particularly loved in this version by Williamson is that it is separated into categories, so you have the option to read it straight through or jump around. I would highly recommend reading it front to back, and then highlighting certain passages or sections that you found particularly helpful along the way, so that it becomes an easy reference—trust me, you’re going to want to reference this one!

Who might like it: Someone on “their journey.” If you know what I mean by this, then it’s probably for you. There are people committed to spiritual growth and development and there are others who would rather not dive into that area now, or for some—ever! I’m guessing that if you’re here, you’re more concerned with personal growth, so I would assume this book would be good for you. And if you’re anything like me, I just eat this stuff for dinner! Give me more! Give me more!

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A few of my favorite little nuggets (headings are names of chapters in the book)


“Until your knees finally hit the floor, you’re just playing at life, and on some level you’re scared because you know you’re just playing. The moment of surrender is not when life is over. It’s when it begins.” pg. 13

“When you truly bottom out, there comes an exhilarating release. You recognize there’s a power in the universe bigger than you are, who can do for you what you can’t do for yourself?” pg. 13


“We have been brought up in a world that does not put love first, and where love is absent, fear sets in.” pg. 22


“Sometimes people think that calling on God means inviting a force into our lives that will make everything rosy. The truth is, it means inviting everything into our lives that will force us to grow--and growth can be messy.” pg. 39


“They say that the mind should be like an empty rice bowl. If it’s already full, then the universe can’t fill it. If it’s empty, it has room to receive. This means that when we think we have things figured out, we’re not teachable. Genuine insight can’t dawn on a mind that’s not open to receive it. Surrender is a process of emptying the mind.” pg. 59


“We can all contribute to a global rebirth to the extent that we allow ourselves to be awakened from our own personal dream of separation and guilt, to release our own past and accept a new life in the present. It is only through our own personal awakening that the world can be awakened. We cannot give what we don’t have.” pg. 75


“The ego always emphasizes what someone has done wrong. The Holy Spirit emphasizes what they’ve done right.” pg. 101

“We’re not aligned with the Holy Spirit until people can behave in any way they choose to, and our own inner peace isn’t shaken.” pg.118

“We love purely when we release other people to be who they are. The ego seeks intimacy through control and guilt. The Holy Spirit seeks intimacy through acceptance and release.” pg. 119

“In relationships as well, we’re brought together for real work. Real work can only occur in the presence of rigorous honesty. We all long for that, but we are afraid of honestly communicating with another person because we think they’ll leave us if they see who we really are.” pg. 130


“It is merely our job to so deeply align our hearts and minds with His spirit within us, that our lives then become involuntary instruments of His will. Insights occur. Situations shift gear.” pg. 215


“One of the problems with illness is that it strongly tempts us to obsess about the body at the very time when we need most to concentrate on spirit.” pg. 238


“You can focus on what’s wrong in your life, or you can focus on what’s right. But whatever you focus on, you’re going to get more of. Creation is an extension of thought. Think lack, and you get lack. Think abundance, and you get more.” pg. 272

Have you read A Return to Love? Did it impact your life? Tell me in the comments below! And if you have a reading recommendation for me, pop that in there, too. I’d love to hear!