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Review: The King’s Curriculum

Review: The King’s Curriculum

This is a fascinating and powerful little book.

That said, it is not a book for everyone.

The King’s Curriculum” is by Johnny Mannaz, a hypnotherapist and master-practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming. It is written in a style somewhere between Jungian archetypal description and a cookbook recipe. The book almost invites you to forget that you are being walked through a very particular process, relying heavily on mythic imagery and utilizing magic.

The title alone is remarkably descriptive. When “curriculum” is mentioned, most people think of a sort of haphazard list of study-items related to a particular class. Once all the boxes are checked; you’re done.

But it is in an older sense that “curriculum” is apt here. The word is derived from the Latin currere, “to run,” and curriculum in Latin referred to the circular course used in chariot-racing (curricle being the chariot). This book is, in this manner, circular; it presents a path for transformation (primarily in breaking old habits and building new ones) that is designed to be repeated multiple times, in a manner designed to establish, emphasize, and reinforce agency and autonomy — what the book refers to metaphorically as “sovereignty.”

Of course, when you get down to it, it’s hard to know whether or not “sovereignty” really is a metaphor. The line between “self-rule” (agency) and “rule” in the legal sense actually can get a little hazy (a digression for another day). But as far as mindset is concerned, it’s a distinction without a difference. Taking responsibility means taking responsibility, and there’s both a weight and a pleasure in that, whether there’s a literal crown involved or not.

Because of its niche style and mystical nature, I would have a hard time recommending this work to most people. But if you are familiar with — for example — Joseph Campbell, Carl Jung, Thomas Moore, Douglas Gillette, or were at any point in a Jordan Peterson frenzy (as I was), then you might be able to get real value out of this book.

Speaking for myself, I do plan on utilizing the cycle prescribed, though probably not yet. I am planning on taking some time to figure out how I would like to travel the described path, and maybe starting later this summer ( I’m one of those weird ones who is open to magic and mystical transformation and so forth).

Perhaps I’ll write about my progress…

…more likely, I’ll take the book’s advice (and my own) and keep it to myself. After all, sovereignty is about accountability to self.

In short, if you have a hard time with symbolic and metaphorical language, then this book is not for you. However, if you have even a moderate toleration for poetic language and archetypal description, and are looking for spiritual aid in taking more ownership of your life and breaking or establishing certain habits, or simply to figure out what your blind-spots and impediments are, this book can be an excellent tool.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Hmm… Interesting. I’m afraid that no book, philosophy or spiritual practice has ever really had much of a positive effect on my life. Except possibly eastern mysticism. And I have yet to meet one of those fabled individuals like Grasshopper who have achieves serenity or nirvana. But there is no harm trying!

    1. I’m sorry to hear that. That may be because many spiritual practices are designed to help the practitioner detach themselves from their life’s outcomes? Christianity, Buddhism, Stoicism, all seek different varieties of “Bliss” by persuading the self of the unimportance of this life… it seems natural (to me) that negative or mediocre life outcomes might follow.

  2. Thanks for sharing this! I am also one of the weird ones as you’ve nicely put it, so this is a valuable recommendation. Also, I think any self-development, regardless of the means how it is done, can only happen if and when that ‘self’ is ready for it. It’s like with that old Eastern wisdom – when the student is ready, the teacher (right one) will appear.

    1. I think you are absolutely right. I do not think that I would have been ready for this particular book four years ago

  3. Agreeing with NC, this is a valuable recommendation indeed, as I do have a high tolerance for poetic language and have been looking for spiritual aid to help unleash my power within. I’ll be sure to read it

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