GOOD & EVIL   by Dale Lisi

Review by Grady Harp, Amazon Top 50 Hall of Fame Reviewer

‘A fine line between insanity and religion’

Maryland author Dale Lisi is a USCG Licensed Captain for Foolish
Pleasures (Charter and Bounty Fishing) as featured on National
Geographic reality television show ‘Wicked Tuna Outer Banks.’ In this,
his debut publication, he brings his life’s experiences  - teenage drug
use and ‘manipulation,’ overdoses of PCP and LSD, and most
significantly his boating accident resulting in the tragic loss of an arm
followed by travels to odd remote regions in search for the answers to
the meaning of life (and the arm he was missing!) – all of this supplies
the energetic fuel for this book on seeking understanding of religion
and God.

Typical of Dale’s fine writing skills, his own mission is well stated in his
words: ‘The closest we can get to the flame without getting burned is
where we want to be. From our beginning on this earth until our end,
we are warned about these things that we all desperately pursue and
glorify (some in secret, some boasting) as we constantly attempt to
partake in them while at the same time trying to elude their worth,
constantly feeding this addiction to entertainment, from Hollywood, to
drugs, to the act of sinning. I have always made horrible decisions,
never believing anything until it was too late, and to make matters
worse, I was overrun with the desire for the ‘extreme.’ Ever since I can
remember, I was completely captivated by just about everything I was
told not to do and did many things many times out of dares I posed to
myself, from skateboarding to riding bikes and motorcycles, from
smoking cigarettes to drinking alcohol, from using marijuana, LSD, and
Cocaine all the way to doing PCP, where I would find satisfaction at a
price and a label that would never go away like a Scarlet Letter. ‘It’s
easier to ask for forgiveness than to beg for permission.”

Dale’s search for God spins a fascinating journey for understanding of
the dichotomy between good and evil, and indeed for understanding
God. He offers, ‘In this day and age, we would rather put our hopes
and beliefs into lies, desperately attempting to make them real,
glorifying emotions, feeling, and erotic experiences, placing our power
into coins and paper, hungering for them with all our being.’ And then
he reflects, ‘Man wants so badly to come up with his own explanation
for things with his microscopes, telescopes, probes, and potions, but
he can only study matter with these tools. He can’t study its intent, and
some things you can’t understand if you are not willing to accept where
they have come from.’ He then adjures, ‘“This is just my interpretation
of the oldest book in the world.’

There are many books about man’s search for meaning, but few have
been delivered in the raw yet poetic and erudite tone Dale achieves in
GOOD & EVIL. His closing comment sums the discovery well: ‘‘The
meaning of life is to learn the difference between good and evil and to
make the choice of what you wish to be a part of for eternity; beyond
that, there is no meaning.’ He somehow makes it all make sense – a
major achievement in our current trying times! Grady Harp, December
1, 2020