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Editorial Reviews

Review

"There is deep and useful wisdom in this book. It is clean, courageous, and generous." -- John Robbins, author of Diet for a New America, The Food Revolution, and Healthy at 100

"Most Good, Least Harm is a brave, honest, important book. Zoe Weil not only teaches us how to think more comprehensively about today's critical political, environmental, and energy issues but, more important, how to act more effectively." -- Robert Shetterly, artist and author of Americans Who Tell the Truth

"Zoe Weil is a true educator with a fund of inspiring examples, a sound moral principle, and abundant common sense. Reading Most Good, Least Harm -- and passing it on to others -- will do lots of good and no harm." -- Peter Singer, author of Animal Liberation and professor of bioethics, Princeton University

"Most Good, Least Harm is a must read for everyone who wants to do something to make our country and the world a better place for the next generation. It is a recipe for creating a nation of responsive social heroes, who collectively can achieve the positive changes we all desire." -- Philip Zimbardo, PhD, professor emeritus, Stanford University

About the Author

Zoe Weil is the co-founder and president of the Institute for Humane Education (IHE). A humane educator since 1985, Zoe has been giving people the tools to make humane and sustainable choices and solve entrenched challenges through her classes, workshops, and training programs. She created the first humane education certificate program and Master of Education in Humane Education in the United States. These distance-learning programs attract students from around the world. The IHE M.Ed. program is offered through an affiliation with Cambridge College where Zoe serves on the faculty.

Zoe speaks widely on humane education and MOGO living, and leads MOGO and Sowing Seeds Humane Education workshops around the U.S. and Canada. She is recognized as a pioneer in comprehensive humane education.

Zoe is the author of Above All, Be Kind: Raising a Humane Child in Challenging Times for parents, The Power and Promise of Humane Education for teachers, and Claude and Medea: The Hellburn Dogs, a children’s adventure book about 12-year-old activists.

Zoe received master’s degrees from Harvard Divinity School and the University of Pennsylvania and is certified in Psychosynthesis, a form of counseling that relies on individuals’ innate wisdom to promote health and well being.

Zoe lives with her husband, son, and rescued dogs and cat in coastal Maine.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books/Beyond Words (January 6, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582702063
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582702063
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #648,440 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Zoe Weil is the President of the Institute for Humane Education, and the author of several books for students, educators and parents including So, You Love Animals. Claude and Medea is Weil's first foray into fiction.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By M. P. Champeau on June 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
Even though Most Good Least Harm has been out for a few months, I have not seen it take off the way it should. It is the perfect compendium for a life of purpose and meaning, a life that helps us individually and as co-creators of global culture. I have to believe that there are many people in the world who would like to make choices that favor compassion and sustainability but are unclear as to how to make these choices. The whole purpose of our schooling should be educating us in ways that help us survive. If we don't learn how to survive on our planet, how can we ever hope to thrive? Even some of our smallest personal choices have global consequences and Zoe Weil carefully and insightfully shows us these links. Most Good Least Harm is a primer for people who care about themselves, each other, the planet and all species. Doesn't that include most of us? Please try to get this book into the hands of people you love, people who want to make choices that do the most good in the world, and create the least harm.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Gwen on June 29, 2010
Format: Paperback
Zoe Weil (who founded the Institute for Humane Education) has written a practical and compassionate guide for people who want to make a difference but who may at times feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of the world's problems. In an easy and engaging style, she uses the principle of "most good, least harm." She does this gently and in a non-judgmental tone, connecting the dots between issues: social change, human rights, environmentalism, animal issues, peace and global sustainability. The pages are interspersed with exercises you can do, personal stories, and resources. It is not an all or nothing approach either. You make the changes that you feel able to do. Small steps do count. I cannot praise this book enough. Please read it! A wealth of wisdom is packed into its slim 224 pages!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Roberto Giannicola on January 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
At last a book that will include the most important step of all in living a green or socially responsible lifestyle: Do as much as you can, but do something!

The principle of MOGO (Most Good) is what I've been telling people for a long time. It is not only necessary to learn about the issues and our impact on people, animals and the planet, but most important, chose something and start making changes. Zoe writes about it throughout the book using personal examples as well as stories from her students, neighbors, friends or people she encountered in her life. Her seven keys to MOGO are not forceful but encouraging, and she raises the questions that the most combative or reluctant reader might ask to demonstrate that no matter what obstacles we may stumble upon, there is always a choice you could make that can mitigate your impact.

This book doesn't constantly rehash the problems that have happened in the past, are still occurring, or might happen in the future; instead, it offers clear steps and solutions to make changes in your life as well as in your community and the world. One step at a time, you will see how you can live a more fulfilling and meaningful life, while participating in making changes for a better world.

The tone of the book is very humble and persuasive, and enables even the most reluctant to take small steps to change. Bravo!
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Format: Paperback
The status-quo mass-conditioning of the populace discourages any deep thought about whether what you're eating is really needed for your health (if it's an animal product, it's not) and whether the cruelty and violence from which it's derived is really a "necessary evil" (it's not). She pops the superficial consumption bubble on clothing and other daily choices as well, waking people up to the fact that their choices really do matter, and if they pretend they don't, they are really just as guilty for the problems as those selling them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Stanley on March 30, 2009
Format: Paperback
If you only have time to read one book this year, let it be MOST GOOD, LEAST HARM (MGLH). Then share it with your family and recommend it to your friends. MGLH is not another one-size-fits-all how-to book, nor some glib new-age prescription for enlightenment. What it is, quite simply, is the perfect guide for anyone seeking, or lost on, the road to a more peaceful and fulfilling life. In a tone that is humble, balanced and wise Ms. Weil takes the reader on an inspiring journey to the heart of what matters most - having the courage and integrity to be true to one's deepest values; or, to put it another way, having the strength to take a step back, imagine one's epitaph, and then conduct one's life accordingly. The message of MGLH is that we are all special, each in our own unique way, and that the choices we make (and the actions we take) have a profound impact on the world around us. Ms. Weil serves up a clear, common sense approach to living a meaningful life fueled by making informed choices that do the most good ... for people, animals, the planet and, ultimately, ourselves.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Flemming on November 9, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book helped me see that I could do something to change the things that I felt it was important to change in the world. I could not only make the changes in my own life but also have the skills to be an advocate for change in other people. I feel empowered. I don't have to stand by helplessly as things get worse in the world. Until I purchased this book, I didn't know how I could live my personal life in ways that did the least harm and most good. I learned how to research to make good choices. In addition, I was told that I could change as many light bulbs in my house as I wanted but that I needed to get other people involved. I actually have been able to determine that I have some skills and the opportunity to advocate for change in the community that I live in as well as joining with others to reach an ever widening circle of people. This is a wonderful book. I hope that many people read this book and become empowered as I have.
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