Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Love Your Enemies: How to Break the Anger Habit & Be a Whole Lot Happier” as Want to Read:
Love Your Enemies: How to Break the Anger Habit & Be a Whole Lot Happier
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Love Your Enemies: How to Break the Anger Habit & Be a Whole Lot Happier

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  200 ratings  ·  30 reviews
When people and circumstances upset us, how do we deal with them? Often, we feel victimized. We become hurt, angry, and defensive. We end up seeing others as enemies, and when things don’t go our way, we become enemies to ourselves.

But what if we could move past this pain, anger, and defensiveness?

Inspired by Buddhist philosophy, this book introduces us to the four kinds o
Hardcover, 172 pages
Published October 1st 2013 by Hay House
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Love Your Enemies, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Love Your Enemies

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Rating details
Sort: Default
Cloris Kylie
Oct 08, 2013 rated it liked it
“Love Your Enemies,” Sharon Salzberg and Robert Thurman say.

When I read the title of this book, my first question was, “How can I love people who’ve hurt me if I’m labeling them ‘enemies’?” I’ve learned that as soon as I see someone as separate from me and label him or her, I’m acting out of my ego, which means I cannot really love a person I call enemy.

Early into the reading, however, Thurman answered my question. He clarifies that “ultimately, we have no enemies. We think of an enemy as someo
Katie Curlee Hamblen
Man, this was a boring slog. Yet the lessons are some of the most important for me, so I read it anyway. I can't help but feel this could have been more interesting/shorter, but maybe it felt like too much of a rehash of other books on Buddhist principles. Maybe I need to re-read it when I am no longer in the throes of baby-brain (probably true of everything I've read lately). The meditations at the back are helpful, and I did glean some goodness out of it, but boooooring.
May 26, 2017 added it
I'm (almost) always reminded of why I don't read self-help books. Because I could write literally the exact same thing as these authors.

It's every trite truism that we all know, but saying it over and over again in different ways doesn't actually have any practical real-world effects. Love your enemies! They're people too! Turn the other cheek! We're our own worst enemies! Anger is really just a kind of fear! Be gentle with ourselves! Yes, thank you, we all know this, but it's obviously easier
Feb 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book took me through emotional boot camp, and I need it. I have read it once and will likely re-read it probably more than once more.

I find ideas I learned from it popping to mind throughout my day. Yet, the book was neither a pleasant nor easy read.

It is one of those books that, as you read, you understand a sentence but then realize there was more to it and so you re-read the sentence again.

It is a slim volume yet very challenging, thought-provoking, and though your ego or intellect may
Misse Jones
The title of this book is what attracted it to me during a leisurely stroll at the library. While it is exciting, the book itself left a lot to be desired. It was one of those self-help books that left me wondering why I picked up another fluff-filled book where the author(s) doesn’t explore any new concepts or new material.

The authors focused their work on four concepts that are important to developing a love ethic in response to the ego (defined by a disconnection with our true selves). They
George Bremner
Aug 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
Salzberg and Thurman write a detailed explication of loving-kindness in practice. Traditionally lovingkindness meditations have four objects of reflection: self, neutral other, other you love, and other you hate. Here the four categories are: outer (people and institutions that harm us), inner (destructive impulses like anger, hate or fear), secret (self-obsession and preoccupation) and super-secret (deep seated self-loathing). I like this new breakdown because it goes beyond cultivating love in ...more
Beth J
Apr 14, 2014 rated it liked it
Meh. Disappointed, and I only hope that the parts I was particularly disappointed about were written by Sharon's co-author. I found very few insights that I had not heard before, and certainly no 'How to Break the Anger Habit', as in, real ways to work on breaking the anger habit. Overall, not very insightful, or helpful.
Tiffany Young
Oct 07, 2017 rated it it was ok
I think the two authors should write their own separate books. They did not sound alike nor did they seem to complement one another's writing. I enjoyed Sharon's portion better, but found it discombobulating to go back and forth all the time.
Mar 02, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfic
I personally didn't love this book. The writing was very flowery. Towards the end it got very woo-woo.

Of course, I think it's a very good message, but the academic and deeply spiritual way it was written just wasn't my cup of tea. This is a book for a very serious student of Buddhism.

I also found the trade off between the authors to be a bit odd. None of us has any fixed individualism, but these two can't collaborate?

The cover of this book got more attention in my work breakroom than any othe
Feb 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Reading on Hoopla download. Online reading is a pain, good content but I refuse to read online in bed so I may not finish this one.
Mar 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book did me so much good that I want to walk up and down the street handing out copies. It is a tool box for changing your life. And it really is true that when your life changes, your world changes in amazing ways. I know. I've experienced it by reading this book and practicing what it preaches.
Annie Hurley
Dec 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: self-help-books
"You can become conscious of what you were formerly unconscious of." - Love Your Enemies, by Sharon Salzberg and Tenzin Robert Thurman

Love Your Enemies: How to Break the Anger Habit & Be a Whole Lot Happier by Sharon Salzberg and Tenzin Robert Thurman reaffirms that we hold within us the power to create our own happiness. Loving our enemies is about more than finding a way to feel love for bullies. It is about wishing love and happiness for everyone, including ourselves.

"How can I love a bul
Lucy Loong
Jan 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Written from a Buddhist point of view, “Love Your Enemies -How To Break The Anger Habit & Be A Whole Lot Happier” revolves around the belief that when we express anger towards another we are only hurting ourselves. It can be a difficult concept to wrap your mind around especially when you are feeling wronged or victimized by someone or simply reacting to the anger that another is showing to you.

There was one example of how to deal with conflict that I really resonated with it tells you that
Nov 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received this book from the Goodreads First reads giveaway program. Thank you authors/publisher for the opportunity to read and review your new book.

Love your Enemies: How to Break the Anger Habit& Be a Whole Lot Happier is written by Sharon Salzberg & Robert Thurman. The book teaches us to recognize the four enemies in life according to Buddhist philosophy :

-outer enemy
-inner enemy
-secret enemy
-super-secret enemy

Dealing with your enemies are taught in several ways. In the book meditat
Alona Perlin
Dec 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
I thought some parts of this book were written, as if for me. The only thing that turned me off to this book is the the authors' conception of karma. I don't think that every single act that we perform on this earth is judged so harshly. Similarly, I don't think it's possible to be so completely "forgiving" and accepting all the time. It's unrealistic. We should strive for some of that, but if we were all that pure, we would be flying up over earth as angels, not living in the real world. There ...more
Sep 30, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
How do you react when a person or situation upsets you? If you become angry, you might find this book helpful. Whatever your spiritual background, you can learn something from this book. Anger is just not losing your temper. As stated in the book, “Anger takes many forms, from guilt, fear, and hostility to impatience, disappointment, and anxiety”. This book is about changing your relationships with your enemies and more important, with yourself. There are also some meditations and visualizations ...more
Craig Bergland
Feb 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Great book filled with excellent insights. I love and respect both authors, but feel a special affinity for Sharon. She has been so helpful on my path! That may be why I found myself wishing Bob was a bit less verbose and made room for Sharon to say more. Then again, a non-hyperverbal Bob Thurman wouldn't be Bob Thurman! I do want to stress that Bob's content was excellent, as it always is. I'm more of an Insight Meditation person than a Tibetan Buddhist, which may explain my bias. I highly reco ...more
Allie Grassmick
Jan 05, 2015 rated it liked it
"The confidence of knowing that freedom is possible in the face of our demons gives us strength when they threaten to beat us down. Knowing that we can make different choices, decide on new paths, aim our mind toward something bigger, and sustain our vision no matter what comes up, reminds us that we always have a source of light, whatever dark room we enter."
Mar 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read all of the book and reread several sections. The focus on meditation and reflection on one's own faults and similarity to others is quite useful. The rebirth and other specifically religious focus didn't interest me as much as the focus of mindfulness in every aspect of thought and reflective life.
May 14, 2015 rated it liked it
The title is a bit misleading - the book is less about outer enemies and more about the inner enemies that make you see others as enemies. The authors balance intellectual, scientific, and spiritual approaches and provide concrete exercises and a nice combination of historical and anecdotal examples for how to be happier and more fulfilled person.
Marianne Elliott
Sep 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I have to confess that I found Sharon's section of this book easier to read, and from time to time skipped over Professor Thurman's more academic prose. But Sharon’s sections were more than enough to shine a light on exactly what I've been missing in my practice with anger. Powerful and potentially transformative. Now I just have to put it into practice!
Sheila Allen Avelin
Jan 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: betterment
The two authors use different typefaces for the sections they write; Sharon Salzberg is so helpful--compassionate and insightful and warmly down-to-earth--that I kept on reading her parts to the end even though her co-author drove me batty, but the typeface made his easy to skip. If his sections weren't in the book, I would rate the whole thing much highter.
Jun 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
To be honest, it took me a month to read this little book and a lot I didn't understand. But I loved it enough to buy so I can underline and highlight to my hearts content. Rarely buy a book - that's what libraries are for - but this is an exception and an exceptional book.
Janine Holter
Nov 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book had concepts that required me to reread in order to completely understand, but well worth it.
Desiree Zamorano
Feb 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: self-knowledge
The authors take the revolutionary statement of "Love Your Enemies" to lead the reader to self-knowledge and forgiveness. Similar to Pema Chodron, which makes me a big fan.
Aug 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Detailed exploration of Buddhist Mindfulness with a specific focus on anger, negativity & blame by two of my favorite meditation teachers. Good for newbies & folks already practicing.
Marie Loerzel
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A book about how to stop being your own worst enemy and start being aware of how we subvert ourselves and live life consciously & mindfully.
May 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: therapy, favorites, kindle
this book helped me in so many ways.
Oct 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
a must read for everyone.
Jun 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely fantastic and relevant piece of writing from Salzberg and Thurman. So many pithy remarks and clear reasoning on the benefit of cultivating compassion for everyone.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Fruitful Darkness: A Journey Through Buddhist Practice and Tribal Wisdom
  • Embracing the Beloved: Relationship as a Path of Awakening
  • Awakening to the Sacred: Creating a Personal Spiritual Life
  • The Mirror of Yoga: Awakening the Intelligence of Body and Mind
  • Essential Tibetan Buddhism
  • Great Eastern Sun: The Wisdom of Shambhala
  • Love Everyone: The Transcendent Wisdom of Neem Karoli Baba Told Through the Stories of the Westerners Whose Lives He Transformed
  • True Refuge: Finding Peace and Freedom in Your Own Awakened Heart
  • Everything Is Workable: A Zen Approach to Conflict Resolution
  • Shadow Dance: Liberating the Power & Creativity of Your Dark Side
  • Awake in the World: Teachings from Yoga and Buddhism for Living an Engaged Life
  • 21st Century Yoga: Culture, Politics, and Practice
  • Work as a Spiritual Practice: A Practical Buddhist Approach to Inner Growth and Satisfaction on the Job
  • Change Your Mind, Heal Your Body: When Modern Medicine Has No Cure The Answer Lies Within. My True Story of Self- Healing
  • Die Wise: A Manifesto for Sanity and Soul
  • Awake at Work: 35 Practical Buddhist Principles for Discovering Clarity and Balance in the Midst of Work's Chaos
  • Yoga for Grief Relief: Simple Practices for Transforming Your Grieving Mind and Body
  • Polishing the Mirror: How to Live from Your Spiritual Heart
One of America’s leading spiritual teachers and authors, Sharon Salzberg is cofounder of the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Barre, Massachusetts. She has played a crucial role in bringing Asian meditation practices to the West. The ancient Buddhist practices of vipassana (mindfulness) and metta (lovingkindness) are the foundations of her work.
“Forgiveness that is insincere, forced or premature can be more psychologically damaging than authentic bitterness & rage.” 9 likes
“Anger spoils relationships where there should be great reciprocity.” 4 likes
More quotes…