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Book Review #45: IKIGAI: The Japanese Secret To A Long And Happy Life

Hector Gracia & Francesc Miralles


The Japanese Secret to a Long & Happy Life

Publisher: Penguin

Pages: 185

One word review: Edifying!

GoodReads: 3.71

Did you know?

The Japanese island "Okinawa" is renowned as the "Hawaii of Japan".

IKIGAI is basically a self-help book that presents facts, case-studies and even certain practices, that are potentially identified as the essential elements required for longevity of a human life. It was an interesting read, getting to know about the Japanese customs and traditions on which the book is mostly centred on.

Favorite Lines from Book:

Everything can be taken from a man but on thing: the last of the human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given circumstances, to choose one's own way.

The book introduces us to Okinawa, a Japanese Island and one of the five blue zones where people tend to live longer apparently. We are then presented with brief ideologies about longevity, the diet that would be required for a long life, the process of being happy always, different therapies from all over the world, etc. There are case studies about the famous Japanese director Hayao Miyazaki, Steve Jobs, Victor Frankl etc. all of which I found amusing to read. Moreover, there are interviews from centenarians, a term for people who are hundred plus years old, on what's keep them going and what is their secret for a long life.

You are completely immersed in the experience, not thinking about or distracted by anything else.

I am sure any reader of this book would definitely take away at least one life-changing idea. My huge and illuminating take aways from this book are:

80% diet - Make sure you always eat only 80% of your stomach's capacity.

Keep yourself busy, Always - This notion, which I already knew, got stronger and more inspiring to follow after reading this book.

Search and Identify your Purpose - I believe it is a must for everyone to identify their purpose in life, no matter it is minuscule or grandiose.

The Japanese are skilled at bringing nature and technology together: not man versus nature, but rather a union of the two.

Towards the end, the book transforms into an instructional guide, portraying different practices and exercises from all over the world, that aids in keeping the body and mind at peace. It is left to the readers discretion to read or skip these segments. Nevertheless, I found certain practices, especially of the Japanese traditions, quite intriguing and would certainly like to conduct some research about them later.

Can someone really retire if he is passionate about what he does?

Although the amount of information provided in the book may seem superfluous, the book and it's content would certainly enlighten the readers and provide illuminating ideas that one may tend to follow.

Instead of searching for beauty in perfection, we should look for it in things that are flawed, incomplete.

Verdict: It's a Secret Anyway! Why don't you get to know about it?

Stay Tuned for 'myView On Books' Episode, the Video Review on 'IKIGAI' on MWM Channel!

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