“The real us is pure love, pure light.”Don Miguel Ruiz, “The Four Agreements”
I know that I am late to the party on this book, but I am so glad that I took the time to read it. The Toltec wisdom contained in this book has truly changed my life.
Author Don Miguel Ruiz was born to a healer and a shaman in rural Mexico. His parents passed on many of their gifts to him. After a near death experience, Ruiz was inspired to explore the practice of self inquiry and to devoted himself to leaning the wisdom of his ancestral line, the Toltec. According to Ruiz’s book, “The Four Agreements,” the Toltec are the “men and women of knowledge” found throughout southern Mexico for over thousands of years. Ruiz has made it his mission to share his knowledge of the Toltec with others, stetting them out on the path to self mastery.
I’m aware that this all sounds a bit guru-ish. It is what kept me from reading this book a lot sooner than I did. However, in the case of this book, I feel that the information conveyed is truly life changing and can be viewed from both a spiritual and psychological perspective. You don’t have to be a wuwu head in the clouds type of person to make use of the information included in this book.
Ruiz begins his book by explaining how most all of the things that plague us and cause us stress and pain didn’t even exist until we started making agreements with ourselves and the world around us for the sake of society. To function in and to be accepted by the society we live in, we have all agreed on what is and isn’t acceptable. However, most of these agreements are based on total BS. These agreements make us hate ourselves for not living up to societies idea of what we should be. They make us hateful and judgmental towards our fellow man. Lastly, they keep us in a cycle of anger, fear, judgement, and rejection. For those who don’t break free, we end up indoctrinating our children into the same cycle. These agreements keep us from seeing that we are already worth love and acceptance just as we are. They also keep us from living an authentic life, as we hide behind a mask that our society accepts and approves of.
Throughout his book, Ruiz highlights the four main agreements that we have made that keep us from living a happy life. By breaking these agreements, we allow ourselves to live a more free, loving, happy, and authentic life. These four agreements are:
- Be impeccable with your word
- Don’t take anything personally
- Don’t make assumptions
- Always do your best
Because this is a review and not a summary, I won’t go into detail about each of these agreements. After all, I really want you all to read the book, which explains each of these agreements better than I ever could. However, I will say that taking steps to break these agreements has helped me to be more forgiving of both myself and others. It takes time, but it is well worth the effort. I am still not where I want to be, but I definitely notice an improvement in the way that I relate to both myself and others by working to break these agreements. For those of you who have been reading my other blog posts, you may remember that I occasionally refer to this book throughout my shadow work, as it helps me when working on some of my major triggers like being judged and fear of failure.
If you are a person who likes thought provoking one liners, you will love this book because it is full of them. I keep a journal where I write down my favorite book quotes, and I swear I wanted to write down almost every other sentence. Furthermore, this book was a really quick and easy read. It was only 138 pages cover to cover, and was much more concise than many of the other self help/inspirational books that I have seen on the market.
Though I loved this book, it did propose some questions for me that I felt were never answered. One of the biggest things that came up for me was, even if I do all of this work and change the way that I relate to myself and others, there is still nothing stopping the toxic people in my life from running over me. Even if I don’t take their actions personally and don’t make assumptions about their actions, it still won’t stop them from spewing their toxicity onto me. What are we to do in that type of situation. I understand that setting clear boundaries is important, but there are some people that we can’t just cut out of our lives or love them through it. For this reason, I do not feel that this book covers every angle of how we should interact with others, but maybe these are things that he covers in his other books? Either way, I feel that this book is definitely worth the read, as it has had a major positive impact on my life.
Next Up: Backwoods Witchcraft Conjure & Folk Magic From Appalachia by Jake Richards
Have you ever read The Four Agreements? What did you think of it? Would you like to recommend a book for me to read? Let me know in the comment section below.
Love Always, AnxiouslyM