Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart

Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart

Extraordinary things happen when we harness the power of both the brain and the heart

Growing up in the high desert of California, Jim Doty was poor, with an alcoholic father and a mother chronically depressed and paralyzed by a stroke. Today he is the director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) at Stanford University, of which the Dalai Lama is a founding benefactor. But back then his life was at a dead end until at twelve he wandered into a magic shop looking for a plastic thumb. Instead he met Ruth, a woman who taught him a series of exercises to ease his own suffering and manifest his greatest desires. Her final mandate was that he keep his heart open and teach these techniques to others. She gave him his first glimpse of the unique relationship between the brain and the heart.

Doty would go on to put Ruth’s practices to work with extraordinary results—power and wealth that he could only imagine as a twelve-year-old, riding his orange Sting-Ray bike. But he neglects Ruth’s most important lesson, to keep his heart open, with disastrous results—until he has the opportunity to make a spectacular charitable contribution that will virtually ruin him. Part memoir, part science, part inspiration, and part practical instruction, Into the Magic Shop shows us how we can fundamentally change our lives by first changing our brains and our hearts.

Title:Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9781594632983
Format Type:

About James R. Doty

James Doty, MD, is a Clinical Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at Stanford University and the Director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education at Stanford University School of Medicine. He completed his undergraduate education at the University of CA, Irvine and medical school at Tulane University. He trained in neurosurgery at Walter Reed Army Medical Center an


    Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon's Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart Reviews

  • Lindsay - Traveling Sister

    4 stars! This was an enlightening read with a simple but powerful message. There are two stand out words for me in this book: COMPASSION and KINDNESS. Among other things, this book explores the power ...

  • Darth J

    There's just something so sapioromantic about this book. You just have to stop and revel in the gorgeous wonder of the brain, the sheer capacity of all it can do. While there are graphic depictions of...

  • Maureen

    The power of positive thinking and mindfulness are nothing new, but this is the first time that I've heard of a child learning such things. Jim Doty had a pretty poor childhood both financially, and i...

  • Myrthe

    This book wasn't like I expected it to be. I thought it would focus on the 'Neurosurgeon' part of the title, so I expected it to be a story about how we can discover the mysteries of the brain through...

  • Vanessa

    One of those rare books where, as I'm reading it, I keep thinking of more and more and more people I want to give it to!...

  • Claire McAlpine

    James Doty never really set out to write this book, but he told his story to so many people with whom it resonated and being one of the founding creators of CCARE (The Center for Compassion and Altrui...

  • Heidi The Hippie Reader

    I received a free advance reading copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads. FTC guidelines: check!Into the Magic Shop is James Doty's memoir. He had a tragic childhood with parents who, for var...

  • Rob Slaven

    I received this book free for review from the author or publisher in exchange for an honest review. Despite the privilege of receiving a free book, I’m absolutely candid about it below because I bel...

  • Charlene

    This was basically Tuesdays With Morrie with some neuroscience thrown in. Far too sensational. Far too exaggerated. Far too ...... everything. Was he really that insightful at such a young age? Is any...

  • Jancee Wright

    Back in college, one of the first people I met was a girl named Sarah. We met at orientation, but I left thinking that we would never be friends. Our personalities just seemed too different. She looke...