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Wisdom of the Ages: 60 Days to Enlightenment Hardcover – October 7, 1998

4.5 out of 5 stars 131 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Wisdom of the Ages reads like a workshop on "What the Masters can Teach You." Author Wayne Dyer offers wisdom taught by the world's "great teachers" (such as Buddha, Jesus, Confucius, Michelangelo, and Emily Dickinson) and then provides an easy-to-digest interpretation for modern readers. The book is formatted into daily, quoted passages (around a page in length) from 60 of these teachers--the "60 Days to Enlightenment" in the book's title. After each quote, Dyer offers his own thoughts on how the "lesson" can be applied to contemporary life. After his essay, the author includes a list of exercises to put the teacher's advice to use. Each passage includes a heading--"Soulcenter" for a quote from Herman Melville's Moby Dick, or "Communication" for William Blake's poem "A Poison Tree," for example.

While his tone is always reverent, Dyer's interpretations occasionally sound flat and obvious--as if he is dumbing down the language for his audience, rather than elevating readers to a higher consciousness (or at least a higher education). This is a shame, because when Dyer writes with the eloquent and enthusiastic voice that earned him his huge popularity--glimpses of that voice do appear in this book--one sees why so many consider him a "master teacher" in his own right. --Gail Hudson

From Publishers Weekly

Veteran self-help author and speaker Dyer (Manifest Your Destiny, etc.) chooses a new format in which to present his familiar material. Here, he offers essays inspired by 60 quotations from poetry and literature that express "life's greatest lessons." Intended as a daily inspirational, each essay focuses on a topic such as patience, leadership, divinity, prayer, grief, humanity, nonconformity, enthusiasm and forgiveness. The quotes are mostly recognizable, from such luminaries as Emerson, Thoreau, Shelley, Shakespeare, Yeats, Kipling, Melville and Shaw. Within this collection dominated by white men are a few surprises, including words from Chief Seattle, Confucius, Langston Hughes and Dorothy Parker. Each essay contains some biographical information about the source and is followed by suggestions for practicing the principle expressed in the quote and Dyer's discussion, such as "reverence for nature" and "unity consciousness." Dyer's pieces are of uneven quality, sometimes vague and undeveloped, simplistic or lacking the clear compassion and positive view required to offer readers genuine help or encouragement. Although the quotations themselves are inspiring, overall, Dyer's ruminations add little of worth.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; 1 edition (October 7, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060192313
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060192310
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (131 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #539,332 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rebecca of Amazon HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 30, 2001
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Being an avid advocate of ancient wisdom, I immediately felt a connection with Wayne Dyer. I first saw his videos on Public Television. His relaxed manner and deep wise voice immediately had my attention. When I heard about his new book: Wisdom of the Ages, I knew this was a book I would want to own.

Ancient wisdom is fascinating to me. It can teach us as much as it taught our ancestors so long ago. When I find a quote or a poem I feel a connection to, I collect it like a treasure. You know that you are learning something wise, something which is lost in the hurried twenty-first century.

Wayne Dyer has captured the wisdom from sixty great teachers. They come from various backgrounds, cultures and religions, yet their writings hold truth. These are the writings of highly imaginative, productive and perceptive individuals. If you appreciate poetry, quotes, and prose selections which inspire; you will thrive for sixty days as your soul grows in a new garden of awareness.

The words from our ancestral scholars hold keys to our own spiritual advancement. Wayne takes each portion of writing and unfolds the cocoon for us. He sets the butterflies of truth free to circle in our minds as we gaze on their beauty. He puts each piece of wisdom in the context of our lives today and gives a practical application.

These short essays will speak to your heart. Each section begins with a selection and the explanation follows. Wayne Dyer is a natural teacher who so effortlessly draws on his own collected wisdom and the experiences in his life that most fully represent his new lesson. He challenges the reader to make his book a two-month project in which you read one section a day and try to apply the principles you have absorbed.
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Format: Audio Cassette
I attended a lecture last year given by Dr. Dyer; and, I have to say that I was impressed. I had read some of his early self-help books. While they were okay for what they were, I found them lacking depth. This was a clearly deeper and more spiritual man. So, I bought the book. It was likewise deeper and more spiritual than those early works. Dyer presents topics and relevant quotes from sages of the ages. He then presents his ideas, observations, and sometimes examples from his own life as they relate to a given topic.
The book is thoughtful and well written. It didn't change my life. I'd already done that. I did, however, find the book delightful and spirit confirming.
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Format: Hardcover
I have read and listened to Wayne Dyer for about 5 years now. This book for me is like a 'reference manual'for the different situations in my life. Rather than reading it from cover to cover, I go to it for guidance. If I'm experiencing a lack of patience or some type of grief has entered my life, I turn to the appropriate section and see if it pertains to my situation and perhaps I can get a perspective on it. It's like,"What does Wayne have to say about this." I have a great respect for Wayne Dyer. His teachings have helped me in some of the most tramatic times in my life. He seems to help me make sense of it all,the positive and the negative.
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By A Customer on May 28, 2003
Format: Paperback
The person who titled their review "This Book Left Me Baffled" dated March 28, 2000, is being a bit unfair to Mr. Dyer. His exact statement from the introduction to this book reads as follows: "As I wrote each of these essays, I looked at a portrait or photograph of the teacher I was highlighting and I would literally ask the individual, 'What would you like those of us here today to know?'---and I would listen and surrender. I allowed myself to experience their guidance and my writing became almost automatic. It may sound strange, but I actually felt the presence of those writers and poets with me as I wrote each of these sixty pieces." I personally don't see anything at all occult about this approach. Mr. Dyer did thorough research for each article, as he explains in the text of the book, and, in my opinion is simply stating that he was seeking inspiration before writing each essay. I highly recommend this book. Mr. Dyer has done a remarkable job of extracting gems of wisdom from 60 of the really great minds who came before us and explaining usually in 3-4 pages what he thinks they were trying to tell us. Buy the book. It's easy to read and worth the investment in time and money. I don't agree with everything he says, but he has certainly made me rethink some of my opinions.
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Format: Hardcover
I was upset to see that the ratings could only go up to 5...1,000 words could never truly express to you how much this book has influenced my life. Dr. Dyer captures the lessons and messages that our great minds and hearts through history dedicated their lives to teaching. He unites our world's greatest teachers from all different cultures and time periods, making this book suitable for anybody, no matter their sex, colour, religion, age. Dyer presents the reader with truth, enlightenment, and hope. He does sugar coat the bad things in life, like many self help books do, but rather let's the reader know that while times may be tough, we can conquer our trials, but the conquership begins within ourselves...While reading this book you feel yourself becoming each individual person quoted, as Dyer expands on their teaching and relates it to our own lives...If you do infact buy this book don't expect it stay in mint condition...My copy is already highlightena dn dogeared beyond recognition...if you open your heart, this book will truly transform yourself as it has mine...
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