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The Way of the Superior Man: The Teaching Sessions

4.14 of 5 stars 4.14  ·  rating details  ·  4,498 ratings  ·  379 reviews
"It's time to evolve beyond the macho jerk ideal, all spine and no heart," teaches David Deida. "It is also time to evolve beyond the sensitive and caring wimp ideal, all heart and no spine." So begins The Way of the Superior Man, a spiritual guide for today's man in search of the secrets to success in career, family, relationships, and intimacy--now available on audio for ...more
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Published October 1st 2005 by Sounds True (first published 1997)
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Sohaib Malkawi Read this! I haven't completed it yet, I admit, but one can infer the corresponding attributes contingent upon their energetic essence. For instance,…moreRead this! I haven't completed it yet, I admit, but one can infer the corresponding attributes contingent upon their energetic essence. For instance, the superior women (with feminine essence) are always open and never shut down on their emotions, they are receptive and never put up walls against falling in love... They are never afraid of falling in love because it's their number one priority... (less)
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the casual reader misunderstands deida and wrongly characterizes him as stereotyping genders. this is not at all what he is doing. listen deeper. he writes/teaches about masculine and feminine energy, which is present to varying degrees in all men and women. when he describes feminine energy, he is not describing women, and when he describes masculine energy, he is not describing men. this is an important distinction. as he says, even places have masculine and feminine energies, e.g., hawaii has ...more
This book could be called "the tao of masculinity." It tries to be a celebration of the masculine, its polar antagonism with the feminine which author David Deida believes is important for sexual and spiritual growth. Much of its advice is the combination of a watered-down version of tantra and the standard spiritual cliches like being fully present and remaining devoted to our life's mission. I had high hopes for this book because it was recommended by multiple people. Maybe that's why I was so ...more
Wow. So this is a very controversial book. It was introduced to me by a friend of mine just going through a divorce, and feeling like he'd suppressed his masculine side for 20 years (of which I actually witnessed the final few years). It wasn't that he was emasculated by his wife so much as he was willing to bury a part of him resulting in him not exploring his full potential, and living a life true to his nature. He was living this book like a paint-by-numbers guidebook. BUT... it was working ( ...more
The core book in the teachings of David Deida. The book that stopped me in my tracks over and over again. They are very short chapters, but each 2-3 page chapter would usually take me about a week to digest. I read this for 2 years over and over again until I finally met David Deida. Let me tell you something: You can read this book for 10 years, and I guarantee you will get a hell of a lot from it doing that, but 3 days in a workshop with David was worth 2 years of reading his book. At least.

Ok, I NEVER write reviews on goodreads (or on amazon, or anywhere else) but this time, I just had to.

First, let me say I completely understand why serious feminists get their panties in a bunch over this book: the language is definitely not politically correct (the constant use of "your woman" rubbed me the wrong way at first, and he uses words like "pussywhipped" every once in a while). It's also possible to interpret some of his statements as discouraging women to have a career, life goals, a
If you feel drawn to this book, read this book.
If you're curious about this book, read this book.
If you strongly dislike charismatic people and are slightly jealous that one man can summon so much energy through his research to write a book that doesn't degrade women, focuses on a man finding his passion, discusses the natural polarity of relationships and cuts to the core of one's self definition of manhood - then maybe this book would be more your style: The Game
This is a book for a man (or
I have a problem with books like this, in that no matter how much good advice they present (i.e. take responsibility for your life), they do so from an incorrect perspective -- that you have a "masculine" or "feminine" energy (which I object to in itself, as it confuses personal spirituality and morality with gender roles) and that the best thing you can do is try to be the best "man" that you can. Which, coincidentally, Mr Deida can tell you all about, and can even present to you in a seminar f ...more
Millionaire Hoy
Every now and then I read a book that makes me go "where the hell has this book been my entire life". In “The Way of the Superior Man”, David Deida provided the best relationship advice I’ve read since Bertrand Russell’s’ “Marriage and Morals” or “Mating in Captivity” by Esther Perel, the best advice on male sexuality since Mantak Chia’s “The Multi-Orgasmic Man”, and not since Viktor E. Frankl’s “Man’s Search for Meaning” has a book made me “check” myself and reevaluate my actions more.

Stop hoping for a completion of anything in Life:
most men make the error of thinking that one day it will be done.
Do what you love to do, what you are waiting to do, what you've been born to do, NOW.

Live with an open heart even if it hurts

A free man is free to acknowledge his fears, without hiding them, or hiding from them.Live with your lips pressed against your fear, kissing your fears, neither pulling back nor aggressively violating them.

Never change your mind just to please a woman: you sho
Typical, new age bunk. Takes a truth from the Bible (gender roles) and harps on it like there was no other point to life (there is). Obsessed with sex. What a waste of paper. No real inventive thought here at all.
Christina Frith
On a whole, I found this to be a book of interesting and useful concepts. The idea that man has the ability and mission, to see women through a lens of sensitivity and great appreciation, is a noble truth. But I could not escape the overarching, sexually gratuitous element that Deida exudes. It's almost like he paints a high station for men, so that he can then go ahead and act out his lower desires... In other words, his message does not feel consistent and his aim is to get women to allow men ...more
Jul 05, 2010 Jerry rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the Average Man
Recommended to Jerry by: the Superior Man
I would say that the best thing that I learned from this book is the "inhale down the front, exhale up the back" breathing technique. It's very relaxing and I especially like doing it while I'm at the gym; I think it makes my abs firmer which make me look fitter.

I thought it was funny how the author basically makes it seem like most women are crazy and emotionally unstable. According to him, that's what makes them beautiful. Made me wonder if he knew some of the same girls that I've met.

Like m
I cannot believe the high ratings of this book! It is terrible. Simply terrible! There are shards of stereotypical gendered roles in it for sure, so I'm sure that will ring true enough to some people. Am I a feminist in that I expect women and men to be treated equally, yes. I have never, ever put down men as a group. In fact I'm the one that usually ends up defending them. I would say a truly strong person never needs to "ballbust" because they are secure enough in their own strength/competency ...more
One thing almost freaked me out. I could relate to almost 100% of what David wrote, and I mean 100% - there was hardly a single line in the whole book that did not resonate with me on the most intimate level. Every tiny thing that I thought was just an idiosyncrasy of my own - the way I related to daily routine, to solitude, to ejaculation, to philosophy, to women, the way I thought about sports, God and freedom, etc. - it is all here, exposed. I had a taste of this deep intuitive resonance when ...more
Hugh Kennedy
I actually had to stop reading the Book The Way of the Superior Man after reading about 1/3 of it. I found his writing to be extremely Chauvinistic bordering on a complete dislike and disrespect of women. (misogyny) It seemed like I was reading something from the 1940's to 50's from his views of how a man should be in life or act?? His way of thinking of how couples and what a Man is in particular should live his life are not suited to me. I Believe strongly in masculinity, but I also believe th ...more
Ole Hylland spjeldnæs
As someone generally extremely critical of this sort of stuff, i decided to try and have somewhat of an open mind towards self-development. Still, i would say most of this book consists of that which i cannot possibly justify as being anything other than spiritual new age bullshit, but there are some good parts as well, thus it exceeded my personal expectations
Read again late November 2013: And I stand by the 4-star rating and review. A couple of things make more sense to me now, interestingly enough.

Original review:
An interesting book with interesting and, I imagine, provocative views on many a thing concerning the masculine and the feminine. But when all is said and done I think much of what the author says is, essentially, true. Not something I would have said two years ago but now, well, now I do;-)

My main problem with the book was the unnecessary
This book is for any guy who has ever tried in vain to understand women. And for any woman who is interested in how men and women complement, and therefore frustrate, each other. I have never felt so explained before, in a way that I could never have done myself.

At times a bit condescending, and there was some profanity I thought unnecessary, but overall an incredible book.
It's politically incorrect. It's sexist. It's gender essentialist. It's woo. It's silly. It's sanctimonious. It makes unjustified generalizations. It's demeaning to both women and men. It's unsupported by scientific evidence.


There are grains of truth. At the very least, Deida is offering a new set of models to work from, where our existing models are inadequate. Models which, for many couples, probably come close enough to the truth to be useful. Many men really are primarily driven by t
Bart Breen
Maleness from another Perspective

Reviewing a book often reveals as much or even more at times, of the reviewer as the book itself. So in an effort to be fair and as objective as possible, there are a few things that should be disclosed by this reviewer up front. First, the cultural and religious perspective of this reviewer comes from a different perspective than that of the author of this book. The cultural perspective of the book, although not overwhelmingly so, is Indian, Hindu with a strong
John Montgomery
I wish someone had given me this book as a young man, not as a middle-aged one because I might have become a half-decent person sooner in life. David Deida explains how men and women each run masculine and feminine energy but rarely make peace with these complementary life forces. Our society does a poor job of helping us embrace our masculine and feminine sides, and often celebrates sexuality at the debasement of the gifts of each of the gender archetypes. Too often the attraction of the radian ...more
As a professional spiritual counselor and sex educator, this book has been on my "to read" list for years, but it wasn't until a client mentioned it to me recently that I went from idly flipping through it to reading and absorbing it.

As a strong, independent woman, I initially scoffed at it, but upon deeper examination I think this book offers a profound challenge to the man who reads it if he's willing to take the philosophy on. The first common misconception seems to be that Deida is calling f
Kimberly Laura Malone
David Deida does a bang up job as your new best friend.

Giving men an opportunity to be heard, affirmed and admonished by one of their peers. Giving them the sort of challenge that only another man can pose.

His blunt simplicity in tackling the real issues men face when moving into their 'full man strength' - as my girlfriends and I call it - is as educational as it is entertaining.

And just when you are comfortable with this book as an Oprah-era self help tome, all neat and tidy for prime time, Mr
Wil Warren
When I first read this book I thought I was acquiring some missing elements in my being as a man. After reading this book the relationships I had with women changed but it took me years to realize that some of what the author claimed as being true and what women wanted was nothing but baseless assumptions on the part of the author. Since then, I've learned that there is nothing at all spiritual about these writings. I now understand there is an attitude that he suggests that we as men exhibit to ...more
Guys, if you have it "going on" in certain areas of life but are struggling in other area, get this book! This is the one that helps weave it all together. Deida is the manual the "me and my boys" refer back to regularly. When ladies become confusing (when aren't they), when relationships become confusing (when aren't they), when other areas of life becomes confusing, this is the manual that we rely. Do yourself a favor. This is the one that works for studs and wusses alike.

Ladies, no guy with a
Leonidas Kaplan
Way of the Superior Man

In the constant pursuit of purpose, challenge, and growth, a man must be aware of the energy he constantly gives off.

The energy is directed at the purpose he must find, the challenges he will face, and the femininity of women he must discover an understanding of.

This can be through reading 'The Male Brain' and 'The Female Brain' to understand biological mechanisms of men and women.

Or by fully immersing in 'The Way of the Superior Man' to get a pseudo-spiritual, eastern-an
Some of the later chapters were a bit odd, but the earlier chapters laid out a great mindset worth adopting. Some choice quotes:

"The world and your woman will always present you with unforeseen challenges. You are either living fully, giving your gift in the midst of those challenges, even today, or you are waiting for an imaginary future which will never come. Men who have lived significant lives are men who never waited: not for money, security, ease or women. Feel what you want to give most a
Aug 11, 2014 Lionkhan-sama rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lionkhan-sama by: Marcel
I cannot even think of how to write an appropriate review for such a tome among tomes.

Firstly, allow me to say that this is a book that you are denying yourself if you haven't read it yet.
Written with the ultimate intent of schooling men about the existences of masculine and feminine energies within this world, your life and your woman.

The information within this book is of revolutionary value to any persons life. I'm absolutely astounded by the profoundly positive effects this book has had on m
Leggere questo libro è stata una vera e propria esperienza, una sfida con me stesso e contro i miei frame mentali; non è il classico libro su sesso e seduzione: è un libro sulla psiche umana e su come sia importante riconoscere e valorizzare il maschile ed il femminile insiti in ogni persona.

Molte delle critiche all'autore non comprendono la materia centrale del discorso, ossia che i termini “femminile” e “maschile” non indicano qua differenze di genere, ma piuttosto di comportamento. Viene sott
Mike Smith
Having read the author's 2005 novel "Wild Nights" ("Superior Man" was published 2004), I was expecting this book to be just as full of new age-y gibberish and half-baked ideas. I was therefore quite surprised and impressed to find "Superior Man" to be clear, understandable, and compelling. Deida says we have to move away from the '50s man who was all spine and no heart and from the '90s man who was all heart and no spine to a "superior" man who combines spine and heart in a loving whole.

Like "Wi
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David Deida is an American author who writes about the sexual and spiritual relationship between men and women.[1] His ten books have been published in 25 languages. He conducts spiritual growth and intimacy workshops and is one of the many founding associates at the Integral Institute. He has conducted research and taught classes at the University of California at Santa Cruz, Lexington Institute ...more
More about David Deida...

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“Austerity means to eliminate the comforts and cushions in your life that you have learned to snuggle into and lose wakefulness. Take away anything that dulls your edge. No newspapers or magazines. No TV. No candy, cookies, or sweets. No sex. No cuddling. No reading of anything at all while you eat or sit on the toilet. Reduce working time to a necessary minimum. No movies. No conversation that isn't about truth, love, or the divine.

If you take on these disciplines for a few weeks, as well as any other disciplines that may particularly cut through your unique habits of dullness, then your life will be stripped of routine distraction. All that will be left is the edge you have been avoiding by means of your daily routine. You will have to face the basic discomfort and dissatisfaction that is the hidden texture of your life. You will be alive with the challenge of living your truth, rather than hiding form it.

Unadorned suffering is the bedmate of masculine growth. Only by staying intimate with your personal suffering can you feel through it to its source. By putting all your attention into work, TV, sex, and reading, your suffering remains unpenetrated, and the source remains hidden. Your life becomes structured entirely by your favorite means of sidestepping the suffering you rarely allow yourself to feel. And when you do touch the surface of your suffering, perhaps in the form of boredom, you quickly pick up a magazine or the remote control.

Instead, feel your suffering, rest with it, embrace it, make love with it. Feel your suffering so deeply and thoroughly that you penetrate it, and realize its fearful foundation. Almost everything you do, you do because you are afraid to die. And yet dying is exactly what you are doing, from the moment you are born. Two hours of absorption in a good Super Bowl telecast may distract you temporarily, but the fact remains. You were born as a sacrifice. And you can either participate in the sacrifice, dissolving in the giving of your gift, or you can resist it, which is your suffering.

By eliminating the safety net of comforts in your life, you have the opportunity to free fall in this moment between birth and death, right through the hole of your fear, into the unthreatenable openness which is the source of your gifts. The superior man lives as this spontaneous sacrifice of love.”
“Every moment waited is a moment wasted....” 26 likes
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