The Four Agreements: a book review

Simple yet not easy.


Imagine that you are getting ready to leave home and start your own life. Your parents, being the loving providers that they are, care deeply for you and want to give you some simple “rules of the road” to help you navigate through lifes’ ups and downs.

What might these navigational tips look like?

They’d have to be simple and few in number, to be sure. ;D

The Four Agreements would fit the bill perfectly.

If you’ve never heard of The Four Agreements, you’re about to.

The Four Agreements is a book was written by Don Miguel Ruiz and originally published n 1997.

So, what ARE the four agreements and why do I suggest that they would make great “rules of the road”

Well, here they are:

1. Be impeccable with your word.

2. Don’t take anything personally.

3. Don’t assume anything.

4. Always do your best.

Sound simple enough? Once you really understand what they mean and start practicing them you’ll realize that it IS a “practice” and not something you can perfect immediately.

One thing I really like about them is that they are fairly easy to memorize and start putting into practice. I suggest you start by writing them on some 3×5 cards and taping one on your mirror and another on your dashboard and maybe one on your refrigerator so that you can become intimately familiar with them.

#2 is the one that I recall really needed to be explained so I could understand it. And the book does that. Here’s another website on this subject that can also illuminate the agreements a bit more. And here is an introductory video on the same subject.

Teotihuacan: City of pyramidsI even went to a workshop that Don Miguel Ruiz put on down in Teotihuacan, Mexico. No, I didn’t NEED to attend the workshop to understand the Four Agreements. I just wanted to visit that really cool city of pyramids about 60 miles northeast of Mexico City. That’s where the Toltec culture flourished where the Toltec wisdom originated. And that’s where I took the above picture last year (2013)

In fact, these four agreements form the heart of Toltec shamanic wisdom.

The Toltecs existed thousands of years ago in southern Mexico and were a group of people who were studying the ancient knowledge and how to preserve it. The photo at the top of this article is one that I took in August of 2013 at Teotihuacan, Mexico while attending a workshop called Living the Four Agreements and facilitated by Don Miguel Ruiz and his family.

The Four Agreements is one of a number of books dedicated to making this shamanic knowledge available to the general public. Other books in the series include: The Mastery of Love, The Voice of Knowledge, The Four Agreements Companion Book, The Fifth Agreement. These books were written by Don Miguel Ruiz or his sons. Two other books that are also a part of the Toltec Wisdom teaching is Beyond Fear and Complete Idiots Guide to Toltec Wisdom. The last two books were written by students of Don Miguel Ruiz.

And here are some of the pictures I shot down there in that magical place. (Click Here)

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