The Great Work of Your Life by Stephen Cope
A Guide for the Journey to Your True Calling

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From the director of the Institute for Extraordinary Living at the famed Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health comes an incisive and inspiring meditation on living the life you were born to live.
In this fast-paced age, the often overwhelming realities of daily life may leave you feeling uncertain about how to realize your life’s true purpose—what spiritual teachers call dharma. But yoga master Stephen Cope says that in order to have a fulfilling life you must, in fact, discover the deep purpose hidden at the very core of your self. In The Great Work of Your Life, Cope describes the process of unlocking the unique possibility harbored within every human soul. The secret, he asserts, can be found in the pages of a two-thousand-year-old spiritual classic called the Bhagavad Gita—an ancient allegory about the path to dharma, told through a timeless dialogue between the fabled archer, Arjuna, and his divine mentor, Krishna.
Cope takes readers on a step-by-step tour of this revered tale, and in order to make it relevant to contemporary readers, he highlights well-known Western lives that embody its central principles—including such luminaries as Jane Goodall, whose life trajectory shows us the power of honoring The Gift; Walt Whitman, who listened for the call of the times; Susan B. Anthony, whose example demonstrates the power of focused energy; John Keats, who was able to let his desire give birth to aspiration; and Harriet Tubman, whose life was nothing if not a lesson in learning to walk by faith. This essential guide also includes everyday stories about following the path to dharma, which illustrate the astonishingly contemporary relevance and practicality of this classic yogic story.
If you’re feeling lost in your own life’s journey, The Great Work of Your Life may provide you with answers to the questions you most urgently need addressed—and may help you to find and to embrace your true calling.

Praise for The Great Work of Your Life
“Keep a pen and paper handy as you read this remarkable book: It’s like an owner’s manual for the soul.”—Dani Shapiro, author of Devotion
“A masterwork . . . You’ll find inspiration in these pages. You’ll gain a better appreciation of divine guidance and perhaps even understand how you might better hear it in your own life.”—Yoga Journal
“I am moved and inspired by this book, the clarity and beauty of the lives lived in it, and the timeless dharma it teaches.”—Jack Kornfield, author of A Path with Heart
“A rich source of contemplation and inspiration [that] encourages readers . . . to discover and fully pursue their inner self’s calling.”—Publishers Weekly
“Fabulous . . . If you have ever wondered what your purpose is, this book is a great guide to help you on your path.”—YogaHara

From the Hardcover edition.

About Stephen Cope

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Stephen Cope is the director of the Kripalu Institute for Extraordinary Living-the largest yoga research institute in the Western world. He has been for many years the Senior Scholar in Residence at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health in Lenox, Massachusetts, where he writes and teaches about the relationship between the Eastern contemplative traditions and Western philosophy and psychology. He is the author of three previous books, including the bestselling Yoga and the Quest for the True Self.
Published September 25, 2012 by Bantam. 306 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Religion & Spirituality, Self Help, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Cope also tells the stories of Robert Frost finding a voice word by word, Walt Whitman’s wartime nursing, “a calling for which he didn’t even know he was searching,” and Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, breaking the rules to understand the connection between seeing and painting.

Jun 21 2012 | Read Full Review of The Great Work of Your Life: ...

Publishers Weekly

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Cope (Yoga and the Quest for the True Self), Director of the Institute for Extraordinary Living at the Kripalu Center in Lenox, Mass., layers biographical teaching stories between the lessons offered by what might be the greatest teaching story of all: the Bhagavad Gita, in which Krishna teaches ...

Dec 10 2012 | Read Full Review of The Great Work of Your Life: ...

Spirituality & Practice

• Marion Woodman: When Difficulties Arise, See Them as Dharma • Harriet Tubman: Walk by Faith • Mohandas Gandhi: Take Yourself to Zero At the end of the commentary on Gandhi, the inimitable Indian leader, Cope writes: "We work first because we have to work.

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Elephant Journal

Both of my SC books look like yellow messes…this was an enjoyable read, and dead-on in my book.

Sep 25 2012 | Read Full Review of The Great Work of Your Life: ...

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