138 of 143 people found the following review helpful
on October 30, 2002
As a business owner in a service industry I have gained more from this book than almost any other personal finance or business management book that I have read. Unlike so many others, Rabbi Daniel Lapin does not offer any quick tricks or simple solutions. He describes a powerful process of self improvement and real change that I have found to be personally exhilarating as well as already profitable. I can see how my many financially successful Jewish friends seem to follow the rabbi's prescriptions almost subconsciously. Now after seeing the business process through Rabbi Lapin's eyes I find myself finding opportunity where I never saw it before. Through the practical steps that conclude each chapter I have been able to adjust my intuitive response to people and situations and this has allowed me to negotiate more effectively. The most amazing thing is how often during my first read of Thou Shall Prosper, I exclaimed "Wow! He's right!" This stuff isn't rocket science but it is often counterintuitive. I could have used some more diagrams and clarification of some of the more complex principles but with a few rereadings, it was fine. I recommend this book for its practical ability to make you really prosper whereas before you might just have been doing OK. He says that if you want to make different things happen to you it isn't enough to do different things, you must actually become different. If you want to change, this book can help you do so. It is going to be my present of choice for many friends and relatives during this holiday season. You won't regret having it in your business library.
84 of 87 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2002
There is at least one brilliant insight on almost every page of this unusual book. The author is braver than most business and personal succeess book writers. The rabbi is willing to say that you can't increase your wealth long term by merely accumulating a collection of clever tricks. Instead you actually have to become a different person. He doesn't say it because this is a finance book not a religious book but I sense that what he is dancing around is almost a 'being born again experience'. You have to help yourself be 'reborn' as a proud, confident, friendly, trustworthy business professional. Well he is right and my experiences with his advice prove it for me.
Lapin comes close to perpetuating the old anti-Semitic canard about Jews being good with money, but he does effectively condense the ancient wisdom that puts far more Jews onto the Forbes 400 list than their population figures would suggest. This is a life-changing book and one that not only can make one more financially successful but can also help one integrate one's money earning activities with one's sense of values and convictions. You'll find yourself, like me, reading it and rereading it. Great value!
48 of 51 people found the following review helpful
on November 5, 2006
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I've never been a people person, never realized the point of being one, until now. The author put this into perspective for me with this; "Judaism teaches that God designed the system to reward people for not remaining isolated from one another". I also didn't realize my own bias toward the idea of making money. Also, it isn't just about material wealth, it's about properity in all areas of your life, wealth naturally follows. This is about changing your life by changing your attitude and implementing good habits to influence prosperity in one's life. I really enjoyed this book and have recommended to everyone I know.
29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on October 31, 2002
I was so thoroughly impressed with Rabbi Daniel Lapin's book, Thou Shall Prosper, that I had to write a review. In clear, concise words Rabbi Daniel Lapin explains how a few, important teachings can help you increase your financial success. For example, he explains why giving to charity in the end will help you make MORE money. Or how understanding that making money at all is a good thing and not to feel guilty that you want financial success.
After reading his book I am seeing very clearly how our society has become biased against the good 'ol American businessman. What a shame. It is just this guy who is keeping others employed and fueling our investments.
I commend Rabbi for writing this book and strongly encourage others to see how a few simple teachings can change the whole way you see your career and prosperity.
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on March 31, 2008
I have purchased many 'money' books over the years, and, for the most part, most of them are filled with pages and pages of 'nothing new' information (like how many times do you need to be told how to do a budget?). This book is very different. First, it contains NO fluff. It's filled with meaty stuff and one needs to be able to focus and concentrate in order to digest it all. It not only gives you valuable new ways to view money;it also gives you an inside look at the Jewish culture and why so many Jewish people are wealthy. I'm only a quarter of the way through the book, but Its already changed my attitude about money, in a positive way. This book can help you make more money if you're in business, just by changing your the way you currently approach sales. If you're looking for a substantial book on money and how to view it from a 'hope someday to be properous' perspective - this book can only help.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on October 31, 2002
I have read many of the popular "airport books" that promise to provide the secrets to success in business. They are like candy tidbits compared to the insights and depth of meaning provided by Rabbi Lapin in his "Thou Shall Prosper: Ten Commandments for Making Money." And how could it be otherwise? He is conveying information and insights drawn from the wisdom found in the Holy Scriptures and the Talmud, the encyclopedia of advice for living. The Talmud, described by Will Durant as "...the most complex and astonishing stories in the history of the human mind..." includes, naturally, true wisdom related to business activities - the economic interaction between men (and women) - seeking success not just in business but success in living.
Rabbi Lapin succeeds in both areas. He does not preach from a lofty pulpit, he acknowledges his personal business mistakes and with hindsight clearly sees their cause(s). The reader will benefit as much from those insights as from the other insights of wisdom, for business and for living, found throughout this wonderful book. I am highly confident serious readers of all religious faiths will learn much from Rabbi Lapin's teachings.
65 of 75 people found the following review helpful
Thou Shall Prosper by Rabbi Daniel Lapin is an excellent book that covers three general subject areas: self-help, personal finance and career development. Basically, the author gives advice in a series of commandments on "making money" where he sprinkles in Jewish wisdom. There is a great deal of useful advice that would have proved especially timely for many professionals in 2001. It does not offer a great deal of assistance dealing with short term cash generation. Rather, the author aims to give readers life-long direction with the goal of building wealth.
The underlying theme of this book is that wealth creation is fundamentally virtuous because it creates wealth and prosperity for your neighbors. Moreover, he stresses the value of money and why it is such an important element of society. His suggestions range from the subtle such as how to carry yourself to more profound concepts such as never aiming to retire.
The book is filled with interesting stories intended to reinforce his ideas. These include a 70 year old forklift driver who earns a six figure income through extensive overtime only to give the money away to charity. Another is a sales representative relative who likes to drive around to far-flung locations in his Rolls Royce.
While very entertaining, the book has its shortcomings. Rabbi Lapin glosses over how large segments of the economy do in fact operate with minimal honesty. Oddly, he even suggests not being entirely honest as it is not socially acceptable.
Like Evangelical Christian preachers, he draws some pretty far-fetched conclusions about the meaning of specific bible versus. The passages he selects support the virtuousness of earning a living. Any intelligent person can read several different meanings in the selections, so I would have to suggest that this approach won't convince many readers of his arguments. This isn't to mean the general ideas aren't strong, just the supporting passages. He also makes some highly questionable scientific claims. For example, he argues that watching movies instead of reading books is detrimental to your creativity because reading allows one to creatively develop images instead of having a director create them for you.
Despite its flaws, I personally found the book very, very interesting. If you like books such How to Win Friends and Influence People and Daniel Goleman's Primal Leadership, you will probably enjoy Thou Shall Prosper a great deal.
32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on October 3, 2002
"The more things change the more we must depend on those things that
never change," says Rabbi Daniel Lapin, in Thou Shall Prosper.
These are wise words in insecure times . Rabbi Lapin offers
practical financial advice founded in Jewish tradition. This book
investigates philosophical, economic and business-like approaches to
making money and creating wealth for oneself and also for others.
I find Rabbi Lapin's book takes a positive, practical, no-nonsense approach to finance and is a refreshing counterpoint to those who make doomsday predictions.
His wisdom and humor make the book an interesting , enjoyable and a rewarding read.
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on November 7, 2002
Rabbi Lapin presents an often-overlooked insight into success in general and in business especially. He writes in a style that is engaging, accessible, and fun. I was drawn into the Rabbi's world as he expands, a little bit at a time, on a simple but revolutionary concept. His techniques and advice have already been a great boon to me in my business and personal life.
You'll understand successful businessmen through Rabbi Lapin's magnifying glass and see how you can make yourself more successful. We can all benefit from his advice and insights into human interactions. This book clearly shows the connections between friendships and wealth. You'll see it too, and you'll be better off for having read this book. Good business is good for more than just you (and your pocketbook). Your success is a boon to your customers, your friends, and everyone around you.
Business is more than just a job; it's a state of mind. And it's right.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on November 6, 2002
When I first met Rabbi Daniel Lapin, I inquired of him if it might be possible to learn from him, the philosophy and principles which underlie the longstanding tradition of "Ethical Capitalism" practiced in the Jewish community. He promised me that such a thing was possible but that I would have to patiently wait while he completed the work. Here is his answer.
Literally, a "Pearl of Great Value" I treasure the knowledge, information, principles, and examples that Rabbi Lapin has compliled in this work.
To demonstrate how valuable this work is to me, I took it with me on vacation and somehow managed to drop it in the swimming pool. I didn't even hesitate to jump in after it and spent the next two hours with a blow-dryer, carefully drying out each page of the book. Warped as it is, it is and always will be, one of my greatest and most treasured possessions.
Thank you Rabbi. You've made my life better by showing me the way.