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The power of meaning : crafting a life that matters / Emily Esfahani Smith.

By: Smith, Emily Esfahani [author.].
Material type: TextTextPublisher: New York : Crown, [2017]Edition: First edition.Description: 290 pages ; 22 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9780553419993; 0553419994; 9780553446562; 0553446568.Subject(s): Self-actualization (Psychology) | Meaning (Psychology) | Emotions | Emotions | Self-actualization (Psychology.) | SELF-HELP -- Personal Growth -- General | PHILOSOPHY -- Ethics & Moral Philosophy | PSYCHOLOGY -- Emotions | SELF-HELP -- Personal Growth -- General | PHILOSOPHY -- Ethics & Moral Philosophy | PSYCHOLOGY -- Emotions | Emotions | Meaning (Psychology) | Self-actualization (Psychology) | EmotionsAdditional physical formats: Online version:: Power of meaning.DDC classification: 128 Other classification: SEL031000 | PHI005000 | PSY013000
Contents:
The meaning crisis -- Belonging -- Purpose -- Storytelling -- Transcendence -- Growth -- Cultures of meaning.
Summary: "This wise, stirring book argues that the search for meaning can immeasurably deepen our lives and is far more fulfilling than the pursuit of personal happiness. There is a myth in our culture that the search for meaning is some esoteric pursuit--that you have to travel to a distant monastery or page through dusty volumes to figure out life's great secret. The truth is, there are untapped sources of meaning all around us--right here, right now. Drawing on the latest research in positive psychology; on insights from George Eliot, Viktor Frankl, Aristotle, the Buddha, and other great minds; and on interviews with seekers of meaning, Emily Esfahani Smith lays out the four pillars upon which meaning rests. Belonging: We all need to find our tribe and forge relationships in which we feel understood, recognized, and valued--to know we matter to others. Purpose: We all need a far-reaching goal that motivates us, serves as the organizing principle of our lives, and drives us to make a contribution to the world. Storytelling: We are all storytellers, taking our disparate experiences and assembling them into a coherent narrative that allows us to make sense of ourselves and the world. Transcendence: During a transcendent or mystical experience, we feel we have risen above the everyday world and are connected to something vast and meaningful. To bring those concepts to life, Smith visits a tight-knit fishing village on the Chesapeake Bay, stargazes in West Texas, attends a dinner where young people gather to share their experiences of untimely loss, and more. And she explores how we might begin to build a culture of meaning in our schools, our workplaces, and our communities. Inspiring and story-driven, The Power of Meaning will strike a profound chord in anyone seeking a richer, more satisfying life"-- Provided by publisher.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
BF637.S4 S6336 2017 (Browse shelf) Available 0000002308963

Includes bibliographical references and index.

"This wise, stirring book argues that the search for meaning can immeasurably deepen our lives and is far more fulfilling than the pursuit of personal happiness. There is a myth in our culture that the search for meaning is some esoteric pursuit--that you have to travel to a distant monastery or page through dusty volumes to figure out life's great secret. The truth is, there are untapped sources of meaning all around us--right here, right now. Drawing on the latest research in positive psychology; on insights from George Eliot, Viktor Frankl, Aristotle, the Buddha, and other great minds; and on interviews with seekers of meaning, Emily Esfahani Smith lays out the four pillars upon which meaning rests. Belonging: We all need to find our tribe and forge relationships in which we feel understood, recognized, and valued--to know we matter to others. Purpose: We all need a far-reaching goal that motivates us, serves as the organizing principle of our lives, and drives us to make a contribution to the world. Storytelling: We are all storytellers, taking our disparate experiences and assembling them into a coherent narrative that allows us to make sense of ourselves and the world. Transcendence: During a transcendent or mystical experience, we feel we have risen above the everyday world and are connected to something vast and meaningful. To bring those concepts to life, Smith visits a tight-knit fishing village on the Chesapeake Bay, stargazes in West Texas, attends a dinner where young people gather to share their experiences of untimely loss, and more. And she explores how we might begin to build a culture of meaning in our schools, our workplaces, and our communities. Inspiring and story-driven, The Power of Meaning will strike a profound chord in anyone seeking a richer, more satisfying life"-- Provided by publisher.

The meaning crisis -- Belonging -- Purpose -- Storytelling -- Transcendence -- Growth -- Cultures of meaning.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

According to Wall Street Journal writer Smith, Americans are beginning to shift their focus from the pursuit of happiness to a life of purpose that can be found by being useful to others and connecting with something larger than themselves. She draws from the writings of philosophers, historians, and authors who describe, in various ways, how doing "what feels good" can lead to depression and suicide, and how concentrating only on the self can result in feelings of emptiness and isolation. The advice to seek the company of others, step outside oneself, and have a worthy mission in life permeate the text. Many points are repeated for emphasis. VERDICT While Smith makes thorough points, her work tends more toward a doctoral dissertation than general self-help, making this quality discussion material for philosophically inclined readers. © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Emily Esfahani Smith is an author and writer who draws on psychology, philosophy, and literature to write about the human experience--why we are the way we are and how we can find grace and meaning in a world that is full of suffering. Her writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal , New York Times , The Atlantic , TIME , and other publications. She is also an instructor in positive psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as an editor at the Stanford University Hoover Institution, where she manages the Ben Franklin Circles project, a collaboration with the 92nd Street Y and Citizen University to build meaning in local communities. Born in Zurich, Switzerland, Emily grew up in Montreal, Canada. She graduated from Dartmouth College and earned a masters in applied positive psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. She lives with her husband in Washington, DC.

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