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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
The Shining Within Me: Communications from the Afterlife is a spiritualist memoir written by Freddie Rivera. Rivera grew up sensing, hearing and even seeing presences as a young child. At first, he thought that this was something everyone experienced, but later he came to see his gifts as something to be hidden lest people think he was insane. School and later the army were very intense experiences for Rivera as he had to cope with the emotions of his peers as well as his own. It wasn't until Rivera was an adult that he realized that while everyone didn't share his gifts, many people did. He reached out to others cautiously at first, but soon found a warm and supportive community of psychics, mediums and spiritualists. Rivera also discusses how he reconciled his Christian faith with his spiritualistic abilities by acknowledging that those gifts came from God.
Freddie Rivera's spiritualist memoir, The Shining Within Me: Communications from the Afterlife is a fascinating and well-written real-life coming of age story. I especially enjoyed the chapters dealing with his early years in Spanish Harlem and his four years in the army. Rivera shines as he recounts the military experiences he had in Germany, the tropics and Alaska. He also gives a unique and incredibly moving account of his visit to Dachau. Without ever being preachy or didactic, Rivera discusses astral projection, lucid dreaming, evidential mediums (which Rivera is) and the difference between clairvoyance, clairsentience and clairaudience. He doesn't try to convince the reader of his gifts, rather he simply yet eloquently tells stories about his life and about those who he was able to comfort through his readings. I had a marvelous time reading The Shining Within Me: Communications from the Afterlife and learned a lot from it. It's highly recommended.