Culture

The Warrior Ethos

Glenn received some new books in the mail from author Steven Pressfield and one that caught my eye was The Warrior Ethos. Pressfield has some great books that have sage advice such as Do the Work that explains how to overcome resistance and procrastination. The great thing about blogging is that I can now procrastinate about doing work while reading a book about how not to procrastinate and call that work for blogging. Oh, never mind…

Anyway, Pressfield describes himself as a writer who writes about war:

…external wars and internal wars, wars ancient and modern, real wars out of history and imagined wars that exist only in speculation.

The Warrior Ethos was written for our men and women in uniform, but its utility, I hope, will not be limited to the sphere of literal armed conflict. We all fight wars–in our work, within our families and abroad in the wider world. Each of us struggles every day to define and defend our sense of purpose and integrity, to justify our existence on the planet and to understand, if only within our own hearts, who we are and what we believe in.

One interesting section called “The Warrior Archetype” discussed the archetypes of psychologist Carl Jung and looked at the stages we pass through on the way to maturity:

The warrior archtype clicks in like a biological clock sometime in the early to mid-teens. We join a gang, we try out for the football team, we hang with our homies, we drive fast, we take crazy chances, we seek adventure and hazard.

The lessons we learn in this “warrior” phase, the book says, are with us our whole lives as we move through our different life phases. What is learned in the warrior phase carries over to being a good father, mother, husband or wife. Finally, the last chapter sums it all up: “The hardest thing in the world to be is ourselves.”

How do we get to the point where we understand who we are, what we believe and how we want to live? This book asks a lot of questions–it’s up to the reader to find the answers. It is also available in a Kindle Edition here.