Saturday, February 14, 2009

A Way of Being

"I/It" or "I/Thou"? This question is the basis for each of the above books, all written by The Arbinger Institute. Arbinger is an outgrowth of a study group begun at BYU several decades ago by a few professors from various disciplines who wanted to find an answer to the question of why people don't always do what they know is right. Their discovery led to a loose collection of notes that got passed around by people for almost twenty years, known collectively as
"Bonds of Anguish, Bonds of Love". Finally, in 2001 a book written by Doctor C. Terry Warner was published entitled "The Bonds That Make Us Free" with an emphasis on the universal human frailty of self-deception.

I just completed reading "The Anatomy of Peace," which leaves only "The Holy Secret" on my "still to read list." It has taken me several years to get through the series, although one could read any of the books and derive great benefit from doing so without needing to read them all. If you only had time for one, I would recommend "Bonds," at least to start. It is the most complete and personal of all of the books. Each of them take a different approach to the concept of our way of being.

If you don't have the time to read a book right now, here are two articles to get you started. The first is entitled
"Honest, Simple, Solid, True" and is from a talk given by Dr. Warner at BYU several years ago. Prepare yourself for some brisk water!

The second is an article published by The Arbinger Institute called "
The Parenting Pyramid" and it deals with the idea that correction is the thing we should be doing least as parents. It is one of several articles available for free on the Arbinger website. To any of those I know who are parents, this is required reading. It will fundamentally change the way you teach your children, moving you from focusing on "correcting" them to helping things to go right. I for one probably need to read it everyday!

I'd love your thoughts about these ideas, once you've had a chance to read and think about them.


  1. terri just bought that "bonds that make us free" book. mabey i should read it

  2. The Peacegiver is at the top of my list. When I first read it 2 years ago it made a profound impact on the way I thought about myself and what I was capable of because of Jesus Christ. I absolutely loved that book, and when I finished it I promised myself that I would share it with as many people as I could. I bought several copies and gave them out to friends and others as I felt inspired. I have read The Holy Secret and I am currently reading Bonds That Make Us Free. I would love to read The Anatomy of Peace if you'd like to make a trade for The Holy Secret? Fantastic books that I will have to read and reread. Thanks for your insight.

  3. I have recommended these books to several people- I think I started you out on the Peacegiver, didn't I Amy? They are amazing and potentially life-changing when read in the right spirit.

  4. Amy - we also have The Holy Secret - but you are of course welcome to borrow any book we own (including "And They Were Not Ashamed" ;o) - our library is yours...