Audio Excerpt: “Spirit Junkie” by Gabrielle Bernstein

In writing the inspirational “Spirit Junkie: A Radical Road to Self-Love and Miracles,” Gabrielle Bernstein is well aware of the mass appeal of a good spiritual transformation story. In her early twenties, Bernstein was a typical Manhattan party girl -- she looked to men, nightlife, drugs, and material possessions to make her happy. She ran a public relations firm and buried herself in work to avoid facing feelings of deep dissatisfaction. Then in 2005, she hit rock bottom was forced to shift gears and seek a healthier lifestyle.

That’s when Bernstein’s love affair began -- not with a man, but with “A Course in Miracles,” a self-study curriculum that focuses on forgiveness in daily life.  It was the spiritual activist and author Marianne Williamson who introduced Bernstein to “the Course” and eventually became her guru, as well. Helping to carry Williamson’s message into the twenty-first century, Bernstein writes: “The more I committed to this new belief system, the less I replayed my past in the present. In time I began to release those fears and witness miraculous changes. This realization was revelatory in that I’d awakened to the fact that if I stuck to the Course’s plan I could truly relinquish my fearful patterns.”

Although she preaches the Course’s unparalleled benefits, the potential for criticism of its jargon is not lost on Bernstein. She warns readers of this from the outset and promises to “Gabbify” her own language in relating its core teachings. She does that by coining words like “~ing,” which stands for inner guidance (as in, “Add More ~Ing To Your Life," the title of her previous book). Hokey or not, it’s clear that “A Course in Miracles” changed Bernstein’s life for the better: “What mattered most was the guidance the Course had to offer me at a time when I needed it most.” Now a successful motivational speaker, life coach, and author, Gabrielle Bernstein emanates positive vibes and self-love on every page of “Spirit Junkie.” Listen to the clip below to learn about the start of her journey to a healthy life.