Review: Walking Through Illusion by Betsy Otter Thompson

Because I’m a musician, I relate to things in musical terms and draw musical analogies from things around me. I couldn’t help but maintain this while reading Walking Through Illusion by Betsy Otter Thompson.

I can’t remember his name, but I once read a quote by one of Mozart’s contemporaries who said something to the effect that the composer’s music had so many beautiful ideas, he could scarcely digest one "delicious morsel" before having another set before him. This long-forgotten statement came to my mind time and again while reading Ms. Thompson’s book...

Walking Through Illusion is rich in spiritual wisdom and insight, but I can’t say that I was introduced to any new ideas (I must add, however, that I’ve read hundreds of books dedicated to spiritual enlightenment). Its true beauty lies in that the author relates these ideas in a way that makes them more tangible, more digestible than I’ve encountered before. Hers is an entirely novel delivery of ancient truths. To get something from this book, one need not be a lifelong seeker; it speaks to the novice as clearly and as breathtakingly as it does to the adept.

The themes are self-accountability and the law of karma, but the umbrella theme is love. Through interviews concerning his friends and the people he knew, Jesus (who comes across as the man I always felt he was—gentle, creative in his analogies, a little playful, and completely modern) explains that karma is not about reward and punishment, but why we choose, on a higher level, the things that happen to us so that we may learn the lessons we set for ourselves before we come here.

Walking Through Illusion challenges us to admit that when we think of ourselves as victims or sufferers, it is because we are not being self-accountable and that there is a deeper emotional need that drives us. As I often say, we don’t make positive changes in our lives because we’re still getting mileage out of the consequences of having made negative ones. Employing spirituality, psychology, and common sense, the author points out that life is illusory, a theater as it were, and that the only reality is what we put into our parts, emotionally. The book is more creative than analytical, more emotional than intellectual. It asks us to feel rather than rationalize.

What I enjoyed most was the Personal Insights at the end of each chapter. After the interview form throughout the body the book, it was nice to have Ms. Thompson speak to me in her own voice. Each chapter is also concluded with a few questions, and there is space beneath each so that the reader may write in their response. I found the questions more thought provoking on the introspective level, however. They encouraged a dialogue with myself in which I could shift and vacillate as I worked through each of them, mentally.

Finally, it is difficult for me to write this review without being emotional because the book hit me on so many emotional levels. There are subjects on which I, quite frankly, needed clarity, and I cannot help but believe that this book came to me providentially. Therefore, it is easy for me to recommend Walking Through Illusion. But more, I truly hope you will buy the book and read it for your own sake. It is a book about grace, a book that needs to be read, especially at this important moment in the course of human evolution.

Please visit Betsy Otter Thompson's website at