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A Whole Life's Work

Living Passionately, Growing Spiritually

About The Book

"Work is not just a job. It is the sum of all our purposeful activities. Seen in this light, work is our whole life."
-- from A Whole Life's Work

What is work in the truest sense of the word? For Buddhist priest and acclaimed author Lewis Richmond, work is more than just having a job, or a means to a profitable end. It is the key to cultivating inner life and contributing to the developing consciousness of all humanity.
In this companion to his national bestseller, Work as a Spiritual Practice, Richmond applies his Buddhist understanding to address what is perhaps one of the primary struggles of contemporary Western life: how to achieve a healthy balance between professional ambition and personal happiness. Here he adapts Buddhist categories of spiritual virtue in defining eight important modes of work the Earner, the Hobbyist, the Creator, the Monk, the Helper, the Parent, the Learner, and the Elder along with their corresponding eight modes of inner work: Precepts, Vitality, Patience, Calm, Equanimity, Giving, Humility, and Wisdom. How to internalize these modes of work, and lead a more meaningful and spiritual life, is what this groundbreaking guidebook is all about.
Whether we are professionals, artists, hobbyists, parents, students, or spiritual leaders, A Whole Life¹s Work can teach us how to reconcile our outer livelihood with our inner lives...and reap the benefits of hard work well done.

About The Author

Photo Credit:

Lewis Richmond is an ordained disciple of Buddhist master Shunryu Suzuki Roshi and a lineage holder in that tradition. He is the author of the acclaimed books Healing Lazarus and Work as a Spiritual Practice. In addition to leading the Vimala Sangha, a Buddhist group based in Mill Valley, California, he is a software entrepreneur and musician/composer. His website is

Product Details

  • Publisher: Atria Books (February 22, 2005)
  • Length: 256 pages
  • ISBN13: 9780743451314

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Raves and Reviews

"Inspiring and edifying."
-- Spirituality & Health

"[An] outstanding book on life and work....[Richmond] is an experienced teacher who shares his wisdom with generosity and integrity."
-- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"I recommend this to anyone interested in developing spiritual every activity of daily life."
-- Lama Surya Das, author of Awakening the Buddha Within

"Well-written and thought-provoking, Richmond's book illuminates the importance of our work."
-- Cleveland Plain Dealer

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