The Deeper Wound: Recovering the Soul from Fear and Suffering


The author of How to Know God provides help for healing deep trauma—whenever it arises—so we may find peace in ourselves and in our world.

Terror came from the sky, and afterward the world would never be the same. September, 11, 2001, defined tragedy for a generation. On that day Deepak Chopra found himself driving from city to city, meeting thousands of people who begged for meaning and solace in the face of suffering. In response he has written The Deeper Wound, offering a way...

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The Deeper Wound: Recovering the Soul from Fear and Suffering

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The author of How to Know God provides help for healing deep trauma—whenever it arises—so we may find peace in ourselves and in our world.

Terror came from the sky, and afterward the world would never be the same. September, 11, 2001, defined tragedy for a generation. On that day Deepak Chopra found himself driving from city to city, meeting thousands of people who begged for meaning and solace in the face of suffering. In response he has written The Deeper Wound, offering a way of healing as a memorial to the thousands of victims who perished.

The opening section, “In the Face of Tragedy,” defines suffering as the pain that threatens to make life meaningless. When our deepest needs go unfulfilled, suffering begins. We begin to heal when we go beyond personal anger and fear to a realization of our true self, the self that was never afraid and can never be wounded.

The true self contains the light that no darkness can attack. Having described a path of awareness and compassion that leads to the light, the second half of The Deeper Wound takes us there through “A Hundred Days of Healing,” daily affirmations, exercises, insights, lessons, and questions—each a step out of pain toward a higher reality. “We can become living memorials to tragedy by restoring the power of life,” writes Deepak Chopra. “You are that life, you are that power. Let us see if we can find the spark that will make the spiritual flame spring up.”

Healing yourself comes in two stages—first releasing the energy of suffering, then replacing it with the soul’s energy. It is a gentle and fragile path, very much like holding on to a thread as it leads you from step to step.

If you take the time to listen to the voice of silence, you will be astonished at the power you have at your command, however long that power has been overlooked.

A portion of the proceeds earned by the author and publisher from the sale of this book will be donated to the Red Cross to aid in humanitarian relief efforts around the world.

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Editorial Reviews

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The Barnes & Noble Review
We may never fully make sense of why September 11th happened. But healing from this national tragedy, on an individual and collective level, is within reach -- and according to Deepak Chopra, there is a way to not only create a memorial but also to eradicate fear and hatred on our planet.

This latest offering by Chopra brings to mind Victor Frankl's inspiring and groundbreaking book, Man's Search for Meaning. The author, after being imprisoned for more than three years in Auschwitz and other concentration camps, conducted extensive research on why some people survived the camps and others did not. His discovery: People need to find meaning in their suffering and to feel a purpose to their lives.

Chopra incorporates this idea into a modern, spiritual context. As we recognize and connect with the inner, eternal nature of our being, we commune with God. This realization of being both inside time and space, yet outside of it, allows us to live with spiritual purpose. "Jesus described the journey with such beautiful conciseness when he said that freedom means 'being in the world, but not of it.' This joy with detachment is the spiritual aim of life." Putting the events and tragedies of September 11th into this context gives us that freedom to live from the level of the soul, which bonds us in love with all of life. In the second half of this book, 100 daily affirmations, meditations, and exercises are shared in order to help illuminate and elevate the soul. (Jennifer Forman)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781400045051
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 12/4/2001
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 1,398,055
  • Product dimensions: 5.72 (w) x 7.92 (h) x 0.91 (d)

Meet the Author

DEEPAK CHOPRA is the author of HOW TO KNOW GOD and twenty-nine other books. He lives in La Jolla, California.


The practice of holistic and mind-body medicine has long been a controversial subject among medical professionals. Some view it as a healthy and natural alternative to chemical pharmaceuticals. Others see it as a system of placebos and new-age chicanery. No matter where one stands on this issue, there is no denying the influence that mind, body, and spirit practitioner Deepak Chopra has had on the world of medicine.

Chopra's bestselling books on a variety of topics have been translated into 35 languages. His lectures, seminars, and learning materials are immensely popular, as are his television specials for PBS. In addition, he has founded his own medical center called the Chopra Center for Well Being and has won fans amongst celebrities ranging from Prince Charles to Mikhail Gorbachev to Demi Moore to David Lynch. When financier/philanthropist Michael Milken was diagnosed with prostate cancer, he claimed that Chopra's holistic methods shrunk his lymph nodes by 90%.

Chopra's interest in alternative medicine initially grew out of concern for his own health. After moving from India to set up a practice medicine in Boston some 25 years ago, Chopra succumbed to many of the stresses that plague medical professionals. As a result, he guzzled coffee, chain-smoked, and drank heavily. Once he began studying eastern philosophies by way of Krishnamurti and Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, he became aware of medical practices outside of the sometimes limited western perspective. This awakening changed his life.

While Chopra is viewed as a major proponent of the role of Eastern philosophies in healing, he does not reject western medicine. In fact, what makes his approach so unique is the way he incorporates the best aspects of western medical research into his theories. This amalgamation of medical philosophies is at the root of self-help volumes like Restful Sleep, Perfect Weight, and Boundless Energy. Elsewhere, Chopra has addressed such diverse issues as reversing the aging process (Ageless Body, Timeless Mind), perfecting personal relationships (The Path to Love), and achieving capitalist goals via Eastern philosophies (The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success).

Chopra has also become concerned with the causes of war and violence and the principles of Eastern religions, especially Buddhism, and his books on these subjects have garnered praise from such major international figures as the Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, and Boutros-Boutros Ghali. Consequently, Chopra continues to play a significant role in world health and world politics in spite of detractors and skeptics. With an immense body of work behind him and more volumes of wisdom sure to follow, he continues to preach the simple philosophy he is certain is the key to understanding ourselves, mentally and physically: "We're not human beings that have occasional spiritual experiences, it's the other way around: we're spiritual beings that have occasional human experiences."

Good To Know

In 1999, Time magazine named Chopra one of the Top 100 Icons and Heroes of the Century.

Chopra's father was a prominent cardiologist and an anglophile who distrusted Indian philosophies and alternative medical practices.

Despite his reputation as a serious-minded intellectual, Chopra describes himself as "playful" and "carefree."

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    1. Also Known As:
      Deepak Chopra M.D.
    2. Hometown:
      La Jolla, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      October 22, 1946
    2. Place of Birth:
      New Delhi, India
    1. Education:
      All India Institute of Medical Sciences

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2002

    Help Yourself Overcome Emotional Trauma!

    The Deeper Wound is the first book I have seen specifically aimed at dealing with the psychological and spiritual issues raised by the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001. The book is also designed to be of help to people struggling with any emotional wound. I was pleased to see that a portion of the publisher and author receipts will go to the Red Cross and other humanitarian charities. Dr. Chopra left for Detroit from New York City on a flight that departed 45 minutes before the first plane crashed into the World Trade Center. His flight was diverted, and he worried as he realized that both his wife and his son were in the air on separate flights to Los Angeles and San Diego at the same time. 'My body went absolutely rigid with fear.' Even after he found out that they were all right 'my body still felt as if it had been hit by a truck.' Later, he thought, 'Why didn't my body go stiff when innocent people died through violence in other countries?' As he traveled over the next few days, people everywhere reached out to him for guidance and support. That is what inspired this book. Dr. Chopra uses these perspectives to point out that we have to move beyond hate and revenge. Unless we help remove the sources of the hate, the deeper wound that caused the attacks will continue and cause new problems. I thought that this was an unusually wise and helpful comment. He goes on to honor three people who died in the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center. In honoring them, he encourages us to take up the torch to becoming the healers whom we all need so much now. If you know Dr. Chopra's work, it comes primarily from the perspective of Transcendental Meditation and the ancient writings upon which that practice is based. There is also an overlay of reincarnation, and an expression of reality in quantum physics terms. Although I am familiar with all of these areas, I had never seen them applied to the issues of how to handle mass death of innocents, grieving, and recovery. So my personal understanding was widely expanded. Naturally, if your religious beliefs give you direct support in these dimensions, you should expect that your religious teachings will not exactly match what Dr. Chopra describes. He takes on the tough issues. What is the meaning of all of these deaths? What does the act say about good and evil in the world? And most importantly, what can we do to help others and ourselves deal with this terrible tragedy and other more personal tragedies? I admired his honesty and candor in addressing the most troubling issues so directly. Where possible and appropriate, he shares his own experiences with tragedy, death, and grieving. Half of the book is a series of essays on subjects related to the tragedy. The other half is devoted to 100 days of spiritual guidance expressed as affirmations, insights, lessons, and exercises. Each thought is supplemented with a page worth of material to explain how to use the idea. Some will cause you to meditate. Others will shift your focus. Others will expand your awareness. For example, one thought is 'As I give loving awareness, so I receive it also.' Another is, 'I will break through the illusion of numbness.' The final one is, 'The only reality is love.' The basic focus of the book is to move you away from focusing on your ego, to the concerns of your soul expanded to their widest perspective. This is because 'evil is an extreme form of egotism.' At the same time, your focus should move from darkness to light. At the most open of 7 circles of existence, you will know 'joy with detachment.' He also describes the emotional states that people go through after a traumatic event: fear; shock; numbness; helplessness; vulnerability; panic; anger; anxiety; and depression. The book has excellent thoughts for how to reshape your focus to help move your emotions beyond those specific stages . . . so you don't become stalled in any of them

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted August 17, 2011

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    Posted January 9, 2010

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