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Are You Truly Open Spiritually? Q&A with DailyOm's Scott Blum
In the tradition of the bestseller Eat, Pray, Love and spiritual classics such as The Alchemist, Way of the Peaceful Warrior and The Celestine Prophecy, Waiting for Autumn by DailyOM co-founder Scott Blum is an enchanting semi-autobiographical parable that reveals a deep and powerful message. The book follows Scott, an inquisitive seeker who meets a mysterious cardboard-sign-toting homeless man named Robert with a sleepy puppy at his side and a penchant for changing lives. It's an exploration of one humble soul's profound awakening. We talked with Blum about how you can grow spiritually by learning from his character's experiences and his own.
Gaiam: The book is labeled fiction, but the main character’s name is Scott. How autobiographical is the story?
Blum: The book is a blend of fact and fiction, and contains many sections that are significantly based in reality. I’ve had many unusual experiences around my personal spiritual journey, and this book was an attempt at sharing those experiences and lessons I have learned along the way. The events contained in the book happened over a period of 20+ years, so I used a fictional thread to tie them together so that it wouldn’t come across as simply a journal, or a memoir. I’ve always been a fan of this style of novel, and I found that by compressing those experiences into a three month period, it made the story much more readable and exciting.
What is the significance of Scott’s journey into the spiritual realm?
Many people are conscious of only the physical realm of existence which represents only a small portion of what is actually going on in our universe. Most of us have come in contact with the spiritual realm at least once in our lives whether we know it or not. These occurrences manifest themselves in various ways including dreams, coincidences or intuition. I hope my book will open people up to these other aspects of life that are often ignored.
What would you like readers to take from this book?
My primary objective is to share my experiences with others in a way that will give them tangible ideas on how to deepen the experience of their own spiritual path and integrate them in their everyday lives. I’m finding that in today’s age, more and more people are finding themselves exposed to various spiritual modalities, and it’s difficult for them to understand how to put these experiences into the context of their lives. I also find that by reading about such ideas in the context of someone else’s journey it is easier for me to relate, instead of reading a straight “how to” guide that is inherently more didactic.
One of the significant underlying threads of the book is learning how to trust your own intuitive guidance when discovering new ideas. It is my recommendation to follow your heart and only explore the ideas you are drawn to. If an idea seems to have little sparkles around it, or if a dragonfly appears out of nowhere when you’re thinking about it, that’s probably a good sign.
Scott experiences shamanic soul retrieval, ancestral healing, lightworking and other modes of spiritual healing. What is your personal, real-life experience with these practices?
Waiting for Autumn contains several different modes of spiritual healing of which I have had various levels of experience. Some of these practices are hundreds of years old, while others are relatively new. I do have experience with all of them, and I strongly believe in the power of each of them to heal. Some of my experiences are exactly as I outlined them in the book, and others were changed slightly to accommodate the plot line. However, these practices are extremely powerful and require respect and restraint by those practicing them. That is one of the main things I wanted to convey in the book; many of the more advanced healing modalities are intensely powerful, and shouldn’t be treated lightly.
What makes Waiting for Autumn stand apart from the highly regarded The Alchemist, Way of the Peaceful Warrior and The Celestine Prophecy?
We each follow a spiritual path that is as personal and unique as our pursuit of any other significant aspect in our lives, such as love. My unique path manifests itself in this book by exploring lesser known modalities that haven’t been seen elsewhere. The section on ancestral healing is quite unique to this type of literature, as is the underlying dilemma related to the dichotomy between the physical and spiritual realms. That being said, I love those other books and I’m honored to be included in their midst. If Waiting for Autumn can touch even one person in the way those other books have touched others, I will be very happy.
How has your experience as the co-founder of DailyOM contributed to the content of this book?
DailyOM is a beacon of light that attracts intensely spiritual individuals. Whether it’s our 900,000 subscribers, or the immensely talented modern masters we do on-line courses with; everyone that comes to DailyOM teaches me something about being a spiritual person in today’s world. Many are also quite generous and offer to share their wisdom, which has given me several unique and rich experiences that I’m sure wouldn’t have happened any other way.
This book is titled Waiting for Autumn and the prequel is titled Summer’s Path – Is there a significance to these titles?
The titles are very specific to each of the books, and have multiple meanings. But one of the themes that tie them together is our connection to nature and the cycles of the seasons. Nature is an important ally in each of our journeys on Earth, and it often rewards many times over what we provide to it. By being conscious of nature and her cycles, we can all benefit from her grace.
Special offer for customers of Gaiam and other DailyOM affiliates: Scott is making the Waiting for Autumn prequel Summer's Path, available for a limited time as a free E-book (text or audio). And when you download the book, you can also enter to win a free Kindle plus a gift certificate for 65 books of your choice — a $1000+ value. Summer's Path is the remarkable story of Don Newport, an engineer who, after losing his job and his health insurance, learns he has a terminal disease and only a few months left to live. To spare his beloved wife, Don seeks a way to end his life that won't further traumatize her. His answer comes when he meets Robert, a brazen angel of death who offers him a rare and unexpected option.
Excerpt republished with permission of Scott Blum, Hay House and DailyOM.