Letters to My Son: A Father's Wisdom on Manhood, Life, and Love
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At once spiritual and practical, Letters to My Son has been beloved by readers from all walks of life, including single mothers seeking guidance in raising a son, fathers looking to share a voice of clarity about life’s most important issues, and young men wanting an intelligent, sensitive, and streetwise companion on the journey toward a worthy manhood. In this twentieth anniversary edition, Kent Nerburn adds to his classic reflections on love, marriage, travel, money and wealth, tragedy and suffering, spirituality, sex, and the true meaning of strength, with new chapters on sexual identity and the difficulty of moving on (from relationships, homes, and stages of life). Unique in its profound simplicity and timeless insight, Letters to My Son is a book to savor and a gift to give to anyone looking for clear and gentle guidance on the big issues in life.
found this bike on one of his early morning walks along a city beach. He had kept it in our garage, covered with a blanket. He wouldn’t let me ride it because, he said, it belonged to someone else. For weeks that bike had stood in our garage as my father advertised in the local papers for its owner. I had secretly dreamed that the owner would never call so I could have that bike for my own. But the owner did call, and now we are standing at his door prepared to return his bike to him. My father
but I am not. I am scarred. No matter how strong the bone might be, my mind is still afraid. It will be afraid forever, and I will never totally trust the ground beneath me again. Whenever I feel a surge of attraction to a woman, I think of that leg. I think of how I took it for granted and assumed it would always be there. I think about how, in a moment, it snapped, and how for the rest of my life I will always be uncertain about it, unable to trust it no matter how much I tell myself it is
the Ojibwe campsites. As they get older and try to pass their knowledge along, they will understand the wisdom of that old man who just smiled while they whispered and giggled and nudged. And as they approach their death, they will remember the peace and calm with which that old man approached his death, and perhaps it will give them courage. By the time they are old he will be their friend, far closer than he was when they were sitting at his feet. They will grow into his wisdom and make it
the truths that emerge when you approach life openly and honestly. Letters to My Son gives us Kent’s wisdom and experience, in beautiful, moving writing that speaks with amazing clarity and directness to the most important issues — the big stuff! — we all face in trying to live life happily, compassionately, and wisely. May you hear, enjoy, and prosper! — Richard Carlson Author of Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff… and Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff with Your Family INTRODUCTION THIS IS
be moved, and you possess a strength that is beyond manipulating, beyond arguing, beyond questioning. Try to find this strength in yourself. It lies far below anger and righteousness and any impulse toward physical domination. It lies in a place where your heart is at peace. Can you turn and walk from a fight when all those around you are jeering at you and telling you you’re afraid? Can you befriend the person nobody likes even though you will be mocked for your kindness? Can you stand up to a