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The Force of Character: And the Lasting Life (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 5. Juli 2000

3.9 von 5 Sternen 13 Kundenrezensionen

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Amazon.de

This philosophy/psychology work on character and aging is not a self-help book but rather a self-perception book--philosophical, wise, and deep. "What does aging serve? What is its point?" asks James Hillman, and proceeds to examine those questions fully. The loss of short-term memory, for example, enables us to better recall the past and review our lives. "On the one hand, brain cells may be flaking off like autumn leaves in a deciduous forest; on the other hand, a clearing is being made, leaving more space for occasional birds to alight." Hillman also likens short-term memory loss to a warehouse packed full of the inventory of life, emptying the latest files "to preserve enough emotional space for evaluating what has been there for a long time." Other aging markers also have benefits for character, reflection, and imagination. We wake up at night not only because our old bodies have to urinate, for example, but also because our minds are open to the wonders and mysteries of night.

Hillman discusses the three major changes that character undergoes in later life. First is "lasting," which is the desire to live as long as possible. Next is "leaving," where we change from holding on to letting go, and our character becomes more exposed and confirmed. The final stage is "left": "what is left after you have left," and Hillman interweaves all the connotations of that word. --Joan Price -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.

Pressestimmen

"Marvelous . . . For a book about longevity, The Force of Character is just about perfect, not only for the wisdom of its content but also for its tone and pace."
--San Francisco Chronicle

"This is a book that will comfort someone afraid of getting old. Its gentle messages shine through."
--Los Angeles Times

"Provocative . . . Hillman breathes new life into a venerable concept, and in so doing helps us to rediscover the soulful possibilities of aging."
--Publishers Weekly

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Von Dave am 21. September 1999
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Those who would label this just another book on aging would likely label the Iliad just another book about some guy lost at sea. "The Force Of Character" is the continuation of literary journey that germinated in "We've Had A Hundred Years Of Pyschotherapy and the World's Getting Worse" and continued to ripen in "The Soul's Code." Hillman in not casual reading, nor is his work inpenetrable. This book waxes nearly poetic at times, something quite unexpected from the bard who oft times mercilessly broadsides our culture's staid notions about salvation through psychoptherapy. While Hillman most always cajoles the soul of the reader to open and partake of his wisdom, this book takes on a quality of reminiscence, of the author and the man - and the character of the man - coming to terms with his own advancing years. Those who seek a book on how to age successfully by accumulation of superficial necessity would do well to read Depak Chopra or another popular icon of spiritual ascent. Hillman will not take us gently into that good night.
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I found the Hillman book to be both provocative and deeply optimistic. Here are ways to view the aging process as something other than a final step toward the grave. Here are wonderful paradigm shifts that nudge the reader to see eternity right here, on this side of the grave. Each chapter shows that all one has to do is open one's eyes to the potential of all the stages of life and keep an eye open to see what each has to offer. This is made most evident in the later and last stages of life. Hillman urges one to see heaven seeping in to life as we age and each chapter gently encouraged to enjoy those gifts now and not set it to something that will materialize only after death. Hillman's style of writing is close tho that of Joseph Campbell in its breath of imagination and arch of line. There are parts that can only be described as poetry in prose. I have recommended this book to many of my friends who are, as I, situated between aging parents and raising children here at home.
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Von Ein Kunde am 19. September 1999
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Hillman once again underachieves with this one. He wrote some brilliant stuff in the 1970s -- but I guess that was when he was 30 years younger. His writing has deteriorated over the years, and his creativity seems to have gone limp. You have to wonder why the man -- who is, or was, brilliant -- continues to embarrass himself with the string of bland books he has turned out in recent years. An appearance on Oprah Winfrey helped put his previous book on the bestseller list, although the returns of his book to his publisher were allegedly very high and the "bestseller" status was a fluke created by orders from bookstores (like the one I manage). One of the other reviewers said "ho-hum" or something like that, and once again it is true. Maybe his next book should be channelled messages from Carl Jung or seomthing -- at least that would be more fun to read than this book. And maybe more inspiration, too, for members of my advanced age group.
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Von Ein Kunde am 14. Januar 2000
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I purchased Force of Character because a series of things happened that indicated to me that this was something I should do. I heard two radio interviews with Hillman within a short time and found his ideas resonated and were presented very accessibly; and my mother in law, who is having a lot of trouble adjusting to many aspects of aging, was visiting. Great, I thought. This is stuff I need to explore.
Having read the book, I still find the ideas compelling and important, but my hopes of being able to give it to my mother in law to gently urge her to appreciate where she is were dashed by the self indulgence and turbidity of the writing. I'm glad I read the book, I appreciate the new outlook on aging it's helped me move toward, I'm sure it will figure in many conversations with friends. But I wish it had been written with more grace.
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James Hillman writes with consummate skill and keen intellect. His subject is a moving target, not easily focused, but he proceeds undaunted. He has the couarge to look beyond the obvious and go where others fear to go. If he is hard for some to accept the reason may be found on p.136- "To see character we must look for it with an idea of character". Some may just simply have a paucity of ideas.
The marvelous "High School" chapter reminded me of my six years of Jr/Sr high school. Daily I entered the school building through a door over which was etched in stone "Knowledge is Power". Yes, good advice for young students. But now we know (p. 168) that Character is power- refined, controlled, salubrious, everlasting. Que la force (de caract`ere) soit avec toi, Docteur!
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True to form, James Hillman once again calls for an artful reconceptualization of the mundane in his most recent work targeting the much neglected beauty of the aging process. Hillman elegantly charts this terrain with a trio of concepts rich in simplicity (Lasting, Leaving, and Left) and effectively applies his coat of soul to several hard-to-reach crevices (e.g., irritability as an expression of "raw urge to live"). As with his protigee Thomas Moore, Hillman ultimately champions the imagination as the doorway to self-actualization and spirituality. The result is fresh and inspiring, offering above all a glimpse into the dynamics of an individual hell-bent on seeing the glass as half full.
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