Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Spotlight ~ Proverbial Beauty

Title:  Proverbial Beauty:  Secrets for success and happiness from the wisdom of the ages
244 pages, paperback, inspirational/personal growth, June 2015 release, Timewise Press

We live in a world of endless contradictions. Work vs. family. Money vs. fulfillment. Desires vs. obligations. The body vs. the spirit. We rely on conventional wisdom to point us forward. But conventional wisdom gets it wrong more often than we imagine.

Open this book and celebrate the marriage between the greatest collection of verbal images in history — King Solomon’s Book of Proverbs — and the most famous visual image in the world — Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.

· Find tranquility in the midst of conflict
· Develop attitudes that deepen relationships
· Gain clarity through times of darkness and confusion
· Decrease cynicism and find joy in the daily miracles that fill our lives.

Take a guided tour beneath the surface of the world we live in through the lens of news stories, historical vignettes, folktales, the wonders of nature, and the discoveries of science -- all woven together in a lyrical and surprising medley of the human experience.

Researchers have no explanation why people, when blindfolded, can’t walk a straight line; but what is it about human nature that makes us wander in circles? What does former NYC Mayor Bloomberg’s plan to ease Manhattan traffic with “congestion pricing” reveal about the way we make decisions? What can fig harvesting, migraine headaches, and two Miss America titleholders teach us about the underpinnings of emotional well-being?

The answers to 3000 years’ of questions are here, revealed for every seeker of truth and self-awareness in the language of our modern era. Guided by the wisdom of Solomon and the mysteries of the Mona Lisa, learn how to find tranquility in the midst of chaos, how to savor the moments of everyday life, and how to resolve the paradoxes of the human heart.

Author Bio -- Yonason Goldson

Try to imagine a marriage between King Solomon and the Mona Lisa.  Now try to imagine that Malcolm Gladwell had written Chicken Soup for the Soul.  If you succeed, you’ll have some insight into the imagination of Yonason Goldson.

The former hitchhiker, circumnavigator, and newspaper columnist took the long road to the rabbinate, visiting 20 countries and 30 states before settling in Israel for nine years to study the intricacies of the Talmud and Jewish philosophy.  He now lives with his wife in St. Louis, where he teaches, writes, and lectures to a variety of audiences on contemporary issues, current events, education, childraising, history, and spiritual growth.

Graduating from the University of California with a degree in English and no plan for the future, Yonason took off on a hitchhiking adventure across the United States.  He ended up in Key West, working for a company that transported boats seized by the Coast Guard for drug trafficking to the customs docks in northern Florida.

His travels eventually led him to the other side of the Atlantic to backpack across Europe before making his way to Israel, where he rediscovered the ancient wisdom of his Jewish heritage.  Since receiving his rabbinic ordination, he taught high school first  in Budapest, Hungary, then in Atlanta, Georgia, and currently in St. Louis, Missouri.

Yonason began his writing career as an irregular columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, then branched out to a variety of Jewish and secular journals.  He has published hundreds of articles and three books, with his fourth due out in July, 2015 --  Proverbial Beauty:  Secrets for success and happiness from the wisdom of the ages.  Midwest Book Review says that, “Real definitions of love and happiness are provided in a blend of proverbs and analysis that will delight those thinkers who want a lively discourse of possibilities and alternative visions.”

Author bio:      Author website:

From the author:

I’ve always been fascinated by contradictions:  good and evil, life and death, the body and the spirit.  Maybe that’s what drew me in college to a course of study as impractical as English Literature.  It’s certainly what drew me into the study of the Talmud, and it’s definitely what has shaped my style as a writer.

But nothing good comes easy.  To write anything worth reading one needs either deep insight or extensive experience… preferably both.  That’s why I set off on the road -- not in search of adventure but in search of education, the kind I didn’t get in college.  In never imagined what I would see and learn.

I saw how mothers in India maimed their children so they would become better beggars transposed against the fairy-tale beauty of the Taj Mahal; I met a poor tea plantation worker in Sri Lanka giddy with pleasure at having a guest in his hovel; I saw children living in a Manila tenement so filled with infectious joy that I didn’t want to leave.  And, while hitchhiking, I heard endless narratives from lonely drivers complaining about their wives, their children, and their jobs.  It struck me that the people with every reason to be unhappy were often much happier than the rest of us.  After all that, it took a long time before the psychological and emotional dust began to settle.

Eventually, I found that many of the solutions to life’s problems have been accessible for thousands of years.  And they have been largely ignored for just as long.

My newest book, Proverbial Beauty, examines the paradoxes of the human heart and mind, blending the eternal wisdom of King Solomon’s Book of Proverbs with the timeless symbolism of the Mona Lisa, and incorporating a variety of folktales, news stories, and historical vignettes to produce a medley of insights and observations into the secrets of happiness and success.

My earlier books include two anthologies of essays:  A Crucible for Silver offers musings on how to help our children by adopting healthy outlooks as parents; and Celestial Navigation investigates the deeper meaning of the Jewish holidays.  My major opus to date is Dawn to Destiny, and overview of Jewish history and philosophy from Creation through the era of the Talmud, published by Judaica Press.

A free PDF file of the first four chapters of Proverbial Beauty is available on request.  Contact me through my website

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