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Heroic Living: Discover Your Purpose and Change the World Paperback – November 1, 2010
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--Eagles Vantage Point
A former Jesuit and successful investment banker uses spiritual and business principles to help readers discern their life purpose and achieve it.
You wake up one morning and realize that the life you’ve dreamed of has eluded you. You sense that something better—something bigger—is waiting out there for you, but you can’t quite put your finger on it. You know that fame and fortune aren’t the answers to true satisfaction in life . . . but, then, what is? The answer lies in discovering and following your “mighty purpose” for life—a reason for living that is so much bigger than yourself that it transforms you, your relationships, and the world as a result.
In Heroic Living, best-selling author and former investment banker Chris Lowney combines his business expertise with proven practices of Ignatian spirituality to help each of us—regardless of calling, career, or current situation—discover our own mighty purpose and develop a personal life strategy that helps us achieve it. Although we may consider astute business knowledge and spiritual wisdom as mutually exclusive paths to our goals, Lowney articulates how the two actually complement each other, and how professional success and spiritual authenticity go hand in hand.
Heroic Living provides all the tools and strategies needed to make practical, long-term life changes that move people away from fractured, compartmentalized lives and toward the satisfaction and wholeness that every person desires so deeply.
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Top Customer Reviews
In "Heroic Living," Lowney responds with a "radically new" approach - proven over five centuries. His is a "whole life" strategy that connects us with our deepest beliefs, and connects these beliefs with what we do every day to "make the world not only life-giving and sustaining but beautiful and interesting."
Applying the Spiritual Exercises of the sixteenth century Ignatius of Loyola, Lowney encourages us to forego today's market of quick fixes and apply The Exercises. These have been part of the Jesuit tradition since Loyola and remain as one of humanity's more powerful and proven instruments for confronting life's fundamental questions and figuring out one's path in response. Through them, Loyola invites us to see the world as God sees it, to work as God works...to learn what nourishes and sustains life, and, what makes it more beautiful, fun, interesting, and entertaining.
"Heroic Living" encompasses three primary dimensions which are critical to a successful strategy: the transformative power of vision and purpose; the ability to make good choices in an ever-changing world; and the skill to live out those choices every day. The practices provide the tactics to execute on each of these three dimensions.
The book begins by encouraging us to reflect intensely on our human purpose - Who am I? What am I trying to accomplish in life? How should I behave and treat other people? What values are important and fundamental, in business and family life?Read more ›
Deep, but not overly long.
Poetic, yet practical.
There are many remarkable aspects to this book. The breadth of sources is amazing. The author cites Martin Luther and a number of Popes. John Calvin and Buddhist monks. Harvard professors and "everyday" people.
But the core of book is Ignatius of Loyola; the founder of the Society of Jesus. The "Spiritual Exercises" were written by him hundreds of years ago, but the values and advice are useful to this day.
Many of the business insights which are claimed to be new are really elements of the "Spiritual Exercises." For example, control the controllables discussed at 117-121.
Charlie Munger is a big fan of Ben Franklin. Franklin, in turn, was an advocate of weighing pros and cons. Ignatius of Loyola sets out the same decision matrix in his "Spiritual Exercises" a good 200 years before Franklin. Id. at 138.
Chapter 10 is exceptionally good as the author's ability to synthesize and explain are on display.
Don't discount the book as only for Catholics or for those that went to Jesuit schools. There are many secular examples and also points from other religions. In this regard, this book is better than "Heroic Leadership" as the focus is less on the history of the Jesuits.
I also appreciated the author's optimistic tone.
The challenge for the reader is to practice daily the values of the book. The book's "warranty" only applies if the reader actually does what it recommends.
There can't be another American with the author's background as a Jesuit, investment banker and author. That's one of the great values for readers of this book in the America of 2009.
The genius of Lowney's book is that he has cast it in a form that perfectly fits the function, the "mighty purpose," to which the book itself is devoted. A book focused simply on the presentation of ideas and strategies would have betrayed Lowney's fundamental message that in order to live well, we need to live large, with a big-picture view of the world into which we have been born, and with a transcendent sense of purpose of bettering that world. It is, Lowney claims, only such a large-scale vision that allows us to make small-scale decisions in a way that gives our life coherence, imparts to us a sense of peace, and in the end, makes our lives truly human.
Strategies organized into bullet-points, the stock and trade of how-to books, would have been insufficient to convey the message that Lowney is trying to convey. To be sure, the book has enough bullet-points to satisfy the organizationally obsessed among us. But what it mostly has is stories, lovingly, reverently, occasionally even poetically told, about real-life, flesh-and-blood people whose lives exemplify the strategy for living to which Lowney is trying to lead us. The profound and simple humanity of the people Lowney introduces us to--janitors, high school teachers, nuns, parents, lawyers--makes the best case possible for his vision of heroic living. Reading about these people made me hunger to construct a life that is as humane as theirs. I'm willing to bet that it will have the same effect on you.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
it's just not my style; and it was a mistake to order both this and "Leadership"Published 10 months ago by Kathryn Spencer
One of the best books I've ever read; if you are looking for a guide to personal growth, this is your book!Published 19 months ago by Pau Aragay
I was pleased with the quality of this product. It is a very good value for the low price. Fast shipping.Published 20 months ago by Martha C. Mendez
This was very, very helpful to me!!! It gave me invaluable guidance during a difficult time in my life.Published 21 months ago by Amazon Customer
Very well written.
Excellent chapters pathway.
Very recommendable for all those people that are trying to find the deep sense for their own life.
This book is a guide for adjusting to the profound changes which have occurred locally and throughout the world during the past few decades. Read morePublished on April 5, 2014 by Judy Campbell
I loved this book. Well written, easy to understand. I lent it to my sister and then my brother. Most worthwhile to read.Published on January 17, 2014 by forget me not