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Simply wonderful, January 8, 2004

Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why available on November 05 2014 from Amazon for 9.19
Those who are focusing on whether or not Gonzales is actually instructing you on how to survive in the wild are completely missing the point of Deep Survival. As a totally urban chick who'd rather die than hike, I bought the book not because I wanted to learn about mountaineering, but to investigate why I've survived a blood disorder that has killed others. And thanks to this book, I've gotten my answer. Gonzales beautifully explains and explores the paradox that must be absorbed completely if one is to live through a catastrophe--which is that to survive something, you must surrender to it, basically fall into it, accepting all the pain and suffering, if you're ever going to get out of it. When you're able to quickly adapt to a new reality and make this new place--however frightening--your new home, you've a much better chance of surviving than the person who's in denial. For one thing, your sense of spirituality and wonder deepens, and this is a tremendous life force in and of...

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Topic Title Summary Views
Those who are focusing on whether or not Gonzales is actually instructing you on how to survive in the wild are completely missing the point of Deep Survival. As a totally urban chick who'd rather die than hike, I bought the book not because I wanted to learn about mountaineering, but to investigate why I've survived a blood disorder that has killed others. And thanks to this book, I've gotten my answer. Gonzales beautifully explains and explores the paradox that must be absorbed completely if one is to live through a catastrophe--which is that to survive something, you must surrender to it, basically fall into it, accepting all the pain and suffering, if you're ever going to get out of it. When you're able to quickly adapt to a new reality and make this new place--however frightening--your new home, you've a much better chance of surviving than the person who's in denial. For one thing, your sense of spirituality and wonder deepens, and this is a tremendous life force in and of...
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Laurence Gonzales has written a riveting book, not about survival technique, but survival philosophy. The points he makes can be applied to any situation in which you find yourself endangered physically, mentally, or emotionally. He weaves together the tao te ching, chaos theory, musings on Roman military tactics, biological lessons on how the brain works to help us preserve the species by preserving ourselves, true-life experiences from people who have endured some of the more bizarre "accidents", and his own taste for thrills.
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I really wanted to like this book. It was recommended by a friend, and is on a topic I'm very interested in. I've been involved in a lot of wilderness activities, have participated in rescues of myself and others, and am familiar with the literature on accidents and survival.The author has hamstrung the book by trying to go 'high concept' and connect the book to chaos theory, complexity theory, and self-organizing systems. The author's understanding of the theories is very weak, and he seriously hurts the book by trying to force connections that don't exist and don't add to understanding.He finally hits his pace in the latter part of the book when he largely drops the half-baked references to chaos theory and actually grapples with the question he set out to answer: who lives, who dies, and why? I wouldn't say his answers are unexpected, but he does a very good job of interwining well-chosen selections from survival literature with some original reporting...
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