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Out of My Mind

Written by: Alan Arkin
Narrated by: Alan Arkin
Length: 2 hrs and 17 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)
Price: CDN$ 9.96
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Publisher's Summary

"This audio production of Alan Arkin's short memoir is top-notch listening. The work is less about the details of the man's life and more about a very smart, very funny octogenarian's search for spiritual meaning. In his inimitable irreverent style, Arkin delivers anecdotes on a range of topics: his parents' conviction that everything would be better if people just lived the way they did, the Holocaust survivor who somehow maintained her positive outlook during all the years of horror, and discoveries he himself made through therapy, meditation, and the support of loved ones. Arkin's familiar voice affirms, 'I have come to no conclusions of any kind, except to feel that it's okay not to know the reason for things.' Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award." (AudioFile magazine) 

One of the most beloved actors of our time reveals a side of himself not seen on stage or screen.

Like many teenagers, 16-year-old Alan Arkin had it all figured out. Then came young adulthood, and with it a wave of doubt so strong it caused him to question everything he thought he knew about himself and the world. Never one to stop seeking, over the next two decades Arkin embarked on a spiritual journey to find something - anything - to believe in. 

In this Audible Original “mini-memoir”, the Academy Award-winning star of Little Miss Sunshine and Argo looks back on his life as a series of philosophical turning points, learning experiences, and a-ha moments. Drawn from a collection of seemingly inexplicable stories and encounters from Arkin's 84 years on this planet, Out of My Mind is a candid, relatable and delightfully irreverent take on how one man went searching for meaning and ended up discovering himself.

©2018 Alan Arkin (P)2018 Audible Originals, LLC.

What the critics say

"[W]ow is he a great storyteller. His voice is hypnotic - but not put-you-to-sleep hypnotic, but like a guided concentration. Which is apropos, as he devotes much of this shorter audiobook to his evolving spirituality and his current meditation habit.... He owns listeners' attention with his confident timbre, his New York accent and, most important, the power of his stories." (The New York Times Book Review)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Overall great experience

My favorite was the stories, one l will never forget. There were times that it felt like he was rumbling a bit but overall l enjoyed it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A brilliant authentic man and his story.

I will return to this book again soon, in case something was missed. Who is this guy? so much more than just an actor.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2018-12-09

Amazing journey into Alan's self!

This book is not for you if:
- you are looking to hear about Alan's acting career.
- you are looking to hear happy, romantic stories.
- you are looking for secret ways to be a millionaire.
- you are looking for a jolly read for a weekend.
- your happiness is solely dependent on the materialistic life and you are okay being that way.

This book is a must read for you if:
- you are eager to explore meditation as a way of a transformative tool to improve your life.
- you are in a thirst to know the meaning and purpose of life.
- you want to understand real life beyond material possessions.
- you are tired of being sick and tired of the happenings in everyday life.
- you are anxious about anything in life and wanting to find an inner peace.
- you want to live in the moment without the worries of the past or the anxiety about the future.
- you want to be more compassionate toward anyone or anything in life.
- you want to live in everlasting happiness and peace in life.

86 of 93 people found this review helpful

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  • MelJoy
  • 2018-12-07

Another interesting life experience

I don't usually read or listen to memoirs. I tried this one and was intrigued and found myself rewinding in numerous places throughout the reading.

Expect nothing. Just listen. He has had an interesting life and shares a very personal side of his life's story. You, too, may find it interesting.

42 of 47 people found this review helpful

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  • Kingsley
  • Henely Brook, Australia
  • 2018-12-07

One Man's spiritual journey

Alan Arkin is a famous actor, director, screenwriter, and Academy Award winner. But this autobiography is not about his career in movies. It's about his journey of self discovery through Eastern religion and mysticism, primarily Buddhism and Hinduism.

He tells of his beginnings as a 'know it all' who was sure there was nothing beyond this world, and his change and he came to understand he didn't know it all. He anecdotes from his life of feeling movements of 'spiritual energy' and healing. He espouses the benefits of meditation, how it has helped him, and how he advocates for other to do it (although he says he has mellowed and no longer talks about it unless someone asks him first). He discusses his spiritual mentors through his life, particularity a life long friendship with a man named John. He talks of not worrying so much if it is actually true, but living as if it is true and the effect that peace has brought him.

If you are hoping for an insight into his acting career, this is not for you. If you were wanting a traditional biography telling of the where and whens, you won't find it here. This is much more story like, with subjective ideas and events weaving together. It is based on the theme of his spirituality.

Alan Arkin does fine with his narration, as you would hope for a respected, seasoned actor. The entire piece is just him, no friends or interviews or sound effect or background music. He is telling stories, and there isn't a whole lot of range of emotion or action in those stories to flex the acting skills, but he does make them engaging and provides energy where it is needed. He is clear, well paced and enjoyable to listen to.

46 of 54 people found this review helpful

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  • Teresa Ann Burns
  • 2018-12-16

NAILED IT!!!

Encore! Encore! Please continue & expound- and perhaps you already know this your path & we all can only hope this is something that has been ‘brought up a 3rd time’;)). This was a warm encouraging ‘hug’ & a joy to listen to. To echo others ; it would be a welcome treat to hear more of your thoughts& experiences and yes enlightening. Lots of us identify with the excitement of it & wanting to even ‘over share ‘ lol Mr Arkin, thank you truly & please continue- it does indeed make a difference

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • rhirhi
  • Kamloops, BC, Canada
  • 2018-12-18

Flakey

I really wanted to like this book. I became skeptical when he claimed a great hoax healer was legit and then he lost me at stories of flashbacks to past lives.
The introduction is great.

28 of 34 people found this review helpful

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  • Sarah
  • 2018-12-31

The rantings of an egomaniac

Arkin may actually be out of his mind. I think he suffers from extreme narcissism. I couldn’t make it through more than an hour of this

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Brad
  • 2018-12-30

Don't Bother

Title says it all. I am glad that I did not pay for this. It's better to watch his movies.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael Stretch
  • 2018-12-15

Great listen.

Great listen. Arkin delves into his own demons some of which I am sure some of us have experienced in our own lives. He does so while maintaining his wonderful sense of humor.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • John 'n Austin
  • 2018-12-24

A great actor, but good grief!

This is just utter nonsense from a great actor. Now I must write another few words to fulfill the minimum requirement for a review. I tried to listen to this because of my admiration for Arkin as an actor, but this book was ridiculous

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Mike
  • 2018-12-19

Not really about meditation as it was promoted.

Alan has some interesting stories to tell. I'm glad that he seems at peace with himself at this point in life. I'm definitely an advocate of meditation but meditation is not the major thrust of this book. If you tend to be a skeptical or scientifically minded person you might be surprised at the things Alan has (and apparently continues to) buy into like psychic (sham) surgery and other far fetched stories that are not difficult to debunk and should be difficult to believe.

But again... I'm glad that he is happy. The book just wasn't what I was expecting.

13 of 16 people found this review helpful