The five secrets
The five secrets you must discover before you die
By John Izzo, Ph D.
Reviewed by Catherine Pulsifer
The title of this book, the five secrets you must discover before you die, intrigued me - what are these five secrets, are they different from my own beliefs I wondered?
As I started reading the book, the way the author conducted his research inspired me to read more. You see, this book contains secrets not written from theory but secrets from actual life experiences of people. And, the secrets discovered are common reoccurring themes from the author's research. In my opinion, the book has creditability, as it is not a book of theory. One last point about the research conducted; the interviews were all done with people 59 and over. The author, in my view, truly did find wisdom from these people.
The stories and views in the book are true examples of the secrets of those who have lived life, who have seen difficulties but rose above them. This book allows you to benefit from their wisdom. When I think back to my younger years, and what I know now, I have definitely gained wisdom over the years. If I could have read this book earlier in my life, perhaps some of my disappointments, some of my shortcomings, and some of my failures would have been different. This is a wonderful book for people of all ages. The wisdom in the book could benefit many.
There is also a chapter in the book called "the secrets to life in one sentence or less"; these are sentences filled with bountiful wisdom.
And, the author ends the book with questions he asked his elders when doing the interviews. As the author suggests, these questions are great to ask your elders. They are also good questions to ask of oneself.
I would highly recommend this great book!
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Quotes from the book:
"Life can be short, and we never know how much time we have to discover the secrets to happiness."
"It seemed to me that most of us know at least one person who ahs achieved a visible wisdom that others could learn from."
"Wisdom does not have to come when we are old; we can find it much sooner."
"We can discover life's secrets at any age, and the sooner we discover them, the more fulfilling our life will be."
"To live wisely, we must recognize that there are two fundamental truths of a human life. The first is that we have a limited and undefined amount of time - it may be 100 years, it may be 30. The second is that in that limited and undefined amount of time we have an almost unlimited number of choices of how to use our time - the things we choose to focus on and put our energy into - and these choices will ultimately define our lives."
"Knowing how to use this one life to its fullest requires wisdom more than knowledge. Wisdom is different and fundamentally more important than knowledge."
"Happiness is about the moments of our lives; meaning is about our sense of connection. Perhaps if we were not mortal, happiness would be enough, but our mortality causes us to want to be connected, to know that it matters that we were here."
"Life is analogous to this trip experience. We get to take life's jour only once, at least in this form (so far as we know)."
"Perhaps because of my belief that wisdom comes from listening, when I set out to discover the secrets of wisdom and of living a fulfilling, purposeful life, I do so by hearing the stories of others."
"When we were young, many of us had wise elders in our lives. Early in my life, like many of you, I encountered wise older people who seemed to know something about life. They may have been grandparents, an aunt or an uncle, or a mentor. Likely there was some older person in our life who we sensed had found 'it'."
"Perhaps we reflect as we age so that we can pass on what we have learned before we die."
"What separates those who live well and die happy from most of us is that they continually ask themselves whether they were living the life they wanted to live and following their heart toward the answer."
"Suddenly, I was aware that no matter what our age, we never know when we will see our last sunset, and as I began to live my days with that deeper attentiveness, suddenly the sunsets seemed to be more colorful, and it somehow seemed that the moments of joy began to increase."