This book describes and helps validate the changes and experiences undergone at mid-life by many individuals. She gives advice for men and women on how to handle the need for inner change and growth while preserving their relationships intact in most instances. While sharing her caution and respect for the rising of kundalini energy, and her view that it should not be forced to arise at an improper time, I do not agree that one always needs to wait until age 36 or so to let this energy begin to awaken. Damming and smothering the flow of kundalini energy when it is trying to rise at any time can have unfortunate effects as well, I believe. Use of certain meditation techniques and physical disciplines like Kundalini Yoga can help to make this awakening safe and smoother when it does occur. Unfortunately, the subject of kundalini awakening has been neglected by western science and astrology, so this book is performing a valuable service by acknowledging the phenomenon and giving helpful advice on how to handle the experience. I believe that just reading that many other people have had similar experiences can help a person to feel better about themselves and not just think they are "going crazy." When I first experienced kundalini rising, I had no one to talk to about the phenomenon, and I only realized years later that other people had these experiences of the feeling of energy flowing in the body as well.
I found the sections in this book on the astrological houses and the polarities they represent to be particularly helpful and inspiring. I found the updated material on Saturn at the end of the book to be helpful as well in describing and plotting phases of one's career and life. In addition, Barbara brings in material on the cycles of Chiron, the heavenly body discovered in our solar system in 1977, and its return to its original position in our natal charts at age fifty. I found this material on Chiron, the wounded healer and ruler of many New Age techniques and modalities, to be so intriguing and moving, and to have so much resonance in my own life experience, that I have bought her book on Chiron and have started to read it as well. Her chapter on Global Shamanism near the end of the book helps tie the experiences of the individual in with the journey of society as a whole and helps to postulate some remedies for current problems of society. I do wish there had been more material on the planet Neptune and its transits at midlife as well. She also does not talk about the planets in the various signs, and transits of the outer planets to other planets in the natal chart, probably due to space restrictions and to the fact that this book was written for a general audience, not just for astologers and those interested in astrology. Therefore, the timing and character of certain events might be a little different for some people due to other factors in their individual charts not examined here. It would be helpful to the reader to get their chart done after reading this book to further personalize Barbara's findings. Also, books like Jeff Green's book on Pluto, or Bil Tierney's "Alive and Well" books on the outer planets could help expand the knowledge of the reader even further. Overall, this book is an excellent beginning to anyone wanting to examine the subject of mid-life crisis from a spiritual point of view.