Zen and the Art of Making a Living
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This is a brief review of Laurence G. Bouldt's book "Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design".

A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design

This book opens with the following quote from Sh-an. "When one happens on a book of this kind, he is well advised to throw it away...". Well, not necessarily in this case- at least not until one has read it and thought deeply about the issues it discusses. If one is searching for a book not necessarily about "getting a job" but about discovering one's life work and purpose then "Zen and the Art of Making a Living" is not only a fine addition to your library but a book that can transform your life. The book does not concern itself with Zen per se. Its breadth is amazing and it pulls from diverse sources of wisdom spanning the arts, philosophy, all religions, anthropology, science, etc. Review Life and the Universal and The Game of Life's Work Affirmations to get an idea of this breadth and depth of exploration. The book is organized as a play with sections denoting "prologue", acts and scenes within acts. The major acts include: (1) Act 1: The Quest for Life's Work, (2) Act II: The Game of Life's Work, (3) Act III: The Battle for Life's Work and Act IV: The School of Life's Work. Act I is to create and define the tapestry of one's life and shape it actively and creatively- not based on societal convention but based on joy, service to mankind and a hero's spirit. Act I involves vision questing, clarifying values, pointing to purpose, targeting talents and marking mission objectives. Act II is identifying your new career or work. It involves reality testing, careful evaluation and visualization. Act III involves implementing your strategy to achieve your life's work: "taking it to the street", marketing strategies, "sailing the entrepreneurship", "wielding the free lance", looking at non-profit opportunities or landing the right job "street smarts". Act IV is involved with getting there, transitional strategies, training skills, self image, enlisting support and finally loving what you do til you are doing what you love. This book is highly recommended and should have a transforming and beneficial effect on your life. Related Link: Careers.

"Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design," is published by the Penguin Group. Revised addition published in Arkana 1993.

 

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