Once upon a time, there was a man named Jack. Jack had everything that he had ever dreamed of a high-paying job, a beautiful home, and a loving family. However, despite his seemingly perfect life, Jack felt a sense of emptiness and dissatisfaction.
One day, Jack decided to take a break from his busy schedule and travel to a remote mountain retreat. He met an old monk who lived a life of personal freedom and spiritual growth there. Intrigued by the monk’s peaceful demeanor and wise words, Jack decided to stay and learn from him.
Over the next few weeks, Jack learned that a life of personal freedom and spiritual growth was not about acquiring more possessions or achieving more success.
It was about letting go of attachment to external things and finding inner peace through meditation, self-reflection, and compassion.
As Jack began to practice these teachings daily, he noticed a profound shift in his perspective. He no longer needed to strive for more or compare himself to others constantly. Instead, he found joy in the simple moments of life, such as watching the sunset or spending time with his family.
Furthermore, he realized that true freedom came from within, not from external circumstances. Jack returned to his busy life years later with newfound clarity and contentment.
He continued to practice the teachings he had learned, and his life became a reflection of his inner state filled with joy, love, and meaningful connections.
In the end, Jack realized that the greatest gift we can give ourselves is the gift of personal freedom and spiritual growth. When we free ourselves from the limitations of our ego and connect with our true nature, we can experience a life of peace, fulfillment, and joy.
How can we experience all this in our lives today?
We will talk about a fantastic book “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz. This book has been published in India by Wow Publishing, which publishes the world’s best books by translating them into many Indian languages.
We will understand four agreements that help build powerful habits. Four agreements can transform our lives into a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love.
The book will give us more control over our minds and energy. The book will help all of us deal with the self-limiting beliefs created by the world that have robbed our desires of happiness and love for ourselves.
The book was published in 1997, and more than 9 million copies of this book have been sold in the US. And it has been translated into 46 languages across the world. In 2001 at Oprah Winfrey Show, the book gained popularity after being featured on TV. The book has inspired many people.
To understand the book better, we are going to discuss this book in 9 chapters.
So let’s get started.
Chapter 1. What Is Toltec?
Thousands of years ago, Toltecs were known throughout southern Mexico as women and men of knowledge. The Toltec culture was developed in old-time Mexico between the 10th and 12th centuries.
To describe the Anarchy of a thousand different voices that they all tried to speak in their minds at once — anthropologists described Toltecs as a nation or a race.
But in reality, the Toltecs were scientists and artists of the ancient people. A culture was formed to trace, and the defender was called the master. They came together as students to the ancient city of the pyramids, Teotihuacan (where men became gods), outside Mexico City.
To be a Toltec, it is necessary to have three skills:
- Control your awareness. This means you must be aware of all the possibilities of who you are.
- Overcome change – how we must change and be free of domination.
- Control the intention.
Toltec choice means that part of life which gives us energy. We can feel God’s power when we learn to use all our energy. The intention is to live life without any conditions. Control of choice is therefore also called the “mastery of love.”
The Four Agreements help us bring about better and better life changes. And Toltecs create Heaven on Earth. So that the dream of making the planet heaven turns into a dream, let’s try to fulfill that dream without any fear.
You can make a better change in your life by changing the agreements of your anxiety. Also, you can reprogram your mind in your own way.
Chapter 2. The Dream Of The Planet
We are inherently born with the capacity to dream, and those who came before us guide us in dreaming about the world. The dream of our planet consists of numerous principles, through which we instinctively draw the attention of a newborn to, and the child begins to embrace them.
Our society employs various means, such as our parents, schools, and religion, to instruct us in dreaming about the planet.
Along with this, society teaches us some things to stay alive. One of which is meditation.
Meditation is the capacity in which all we have to do is focus on what we want to see. We can see a million things at once, but using our attention, we can keep whatever we want to see – keep it in our minds.
The elders nearby have attracted our attention and, through repetition, have put all the information about society in our minds. In this way, we have learned everything that we know now. Or which we use to live our life.
The dream of the planet attracts our attention and teaches us what we can trust. Let us start with the language that we use for conversation.
Language is a way of explaining your point to others. Every letter in every language is an agreement. We call it a page in a book, meaning the word page is an agreement that we understand.
Once we know the words on the page, we can turn our attention to explaining that to others. When we were kids, the people around us created our belief system.
Because as kids, we do not have the option to choose our own beliefs, but we can believe all the information or things that others tell us. The only way to gather information is to agree.
Dreaming of a planet may grab your attention, but if you disagree, you don’t embrace the information that the society gives you.
As soon as we agree and start trusting what society tells us, it becomes our genuine trust. That’s why to trust in the true sense is to rely on it without any conditions.
Chapter 3. Domestication Of Humans
By adopting the dream of the planet, we all start becoming human pets in a way. Because we understand the same things that we do, that the society teaches, and we do all the work according to their methods. Due to this, we do not have control over our lives because we are taught from the very beginning to listen to people and act according to them.
We are taught the names of the first things like a bottle, milk, or holding. And as we get older, we are guided by TV or people around us on how to live and what kind of behavior to adopt. So, the dream of the planet teaches us to be human.
In a way, we become our pets because we start adopting all those things ourselves.
In this our belief system is useful. It is like a book of law that tells us to rule the mind. This means, without any question, we trust everything that we have been told since childhood.
They make all the decisions after thinking and keeping in mind the things mentioned. Even if we disagree with that decision. Even moral rules are placed in order in our minds. All these agreements keep popping up in our minds, and these start to rule our dreams.
Just as the government has a book of laws that control the dream of the planet, our belief system is a book of laws that controls our dreams. All these laws are present in our minds; and we are those.
And the judge within us works according to these rules. And that is why the regulations made by the planet take decisions, and we have to suffer the punishment.
The true meaning of humanity is truth, justice, and beauty. We are looking for facts because we only trust the lies that we have gathered in our minds. We are looking for justice because the belief system does not provide justice.
We seek beauty because it doesn’t matter how beautiful a person is as long as we don’t believe that person has beauty.
We seek humanity in the outside world, while everything is already in inside of us. We need help finding the truth by searching within.
Because wherever we look, only the truth is visible. But we need the proper understanding to understand the reality of these agreements and the trust we have accumulated in our minds. And this is why we have become the pets of the humans living in this society.
Chapter 4. Mitote (State Of Human Mind)
Our mind is like a fog, which Toltecs called Mitote (MIH-TOE´-TAY). Our reason is like a dream where a thousand people talk simultaneously, and none of them understand each other. This is the state of our mind which is very big.
In India, people Mitote, that is, Maya, which means confusion. Whatever you believe about yourself and the world, they are everything in your mind. And that’s why we can’t see who we are, and we can’t even see that we are not free.
A big Mitote creates a lot of Anarchy which causes us to see and misunderstand everything wrongly. We know what we want to see and hear what we want to hear. And we need to understand things as they are. For example, think that your mind is a computer.
And compare your point with that of the computer virus, which causes damage to the computer because the computer or our mind is collecting the wrong information, which is harmful to our mental health.
A small piece of wrong information can spoil how people talk. Like if we give wrong information to someone, then those people act according to those wrong information which can be very wrong for them.
Imagine that whenever other people talk to you, they put a computer virus in your brain, making you think a little less correctly each time. Then imagine that to clear your confusion or get some relief, you talk to someone else and spread this virus to those people. This is the key lesson of this book “The Four Agreements.”
Now imagine that this pattern is going on like a never-ending chain. And in the end, the world will be left with only wrong information. This misinformation is poisonous. It is a virus that Toltec called mitotically. To avoid such misinformation, make these four agreements with yourself.
Chapter 5. First Agreement – Be Flawless With Your Words
The first Agreement is the most important and the hardest to do. It is so important that you can reach that level of existence only with this first Agreement, which the author calls “Heaven on Earth”. The first Agreement is to be flawless with your words. Words are more than we understand.
They are powerful and most important for building levels, concepts, relationships, and trust. To avoid creating confusion that could harm you, be very careful when using that confusion on yourself or others.
Make a habit of saying only those things you speak for your good, and if there is any doubt that means you find something wrong in any way, then do not say that thing to anyone. If you want to be free, happy, and cross the level of existence that means hell, then make this first Agreement with yourself.
Through your words, you express your creative power in front of everyone. You tell everything through words. Whatever language you speak, your intention is expressed through words. Everything is revealed through your words, what you dream, what you feel, and who you are in reality.
So keep in mind what kind of words you use while speaking. Being flawless with your comments allows you to use your energy correctly. Meaning you can use your power in the direction of truth and love yourself. If you make a pact to be flawless with your words, then just with that intention, you can achieve that. Remember, only the truth can set us free.
You can measure the error of your word by the level of loving yourself. How much you love yourself and how you feel about yourself are directly related to the quality and oneness of your comments.
You feel good when you don’t make any mistakes in your words; that’s how you start feeling happiness and peace. So make a pact to be flawless with your comments today.
Chapter 6. Second Agreement – Don’t Take Anything Personally
The following three agreements are born out of the first Agreement. To make the second Agreement, remember the first one you made with yourself and adopt them forever.
If you practice the first two agreements, you can easily make 75% of those more minor agreements, which keeps you trapped in hell on earth.
If you can make this second Agreement a habit, you will find that nothing can put you back in hell. When you don’t take anything personally, you have a lot of freedom. You take it personally because you agree with whatever was told to you.
As soon as you approve of those things, you are trapped in a dream of hell. It is called as the author’s “Personal Importance”.
Personal Importance, or taking things personally, makes you selfish or greedy because we assume everything is about ourselves. During our time in school, or while we have pets, we learn to take everything personally. But we think we are responsible for everything.
Whatever you think or feel, it’s only your problem; it doesn’t matter to anyone else. It’s that way. It is how you see the world. It is nothing personal because you behave with yourself, not anyone else.
Others have a belief system according to theirs, so whatever they think of you, it’s actually about them. Because we recognize all people in the same way as we have the power to understand.
If you live without fear or if you love anyone, then there is no place in your life for any of these feelings. You may feel good if you don’t feel any of these feelings. When you feel good, everything is good around you.
When everything is good around you, everything makes you happy. Loving everything around is because you love yourself. You like to be the way you are. And you are satisfied with yourself.
It would help if you didn’t take anything personally. Because by taking things personally, you stop loving yourself. We all face different kinds of suffering at different levels. Human beings are always ready to help each other when they are suffering.
You are never responsible for the actions of others. You are only responsible for yourself. When you understand this and start refusing to take things personally, you can hardly be victimized by the words, comments, or actions of others. Therefore, start the practice of not taking anything personally.
Chapter 7. Third Agreement – Don’t Make Assumptions
The third Agreement is not to make assumptions. We have a habit of making assumptions about everything in ourselves. The problem is that we tend to believe those assumptions to be accurate.
We may even swear to make them true. We often make assumptions about what others are doing or thinking. We take it personally, then we start blaming them, and we have an emotional reaction to our words. So whenever we guess, we ask for problems and need clarification with their assumption.
Ask questions rather than make an assumption. It is always the better way because beliefs prepare us to suffer. We have a habit of dreaming without knowing the reality. We dream things up in our imaginations.
Because we don’t understand something, we assume what it means, and when the truth comes out, our dreams are shattered, and we realize it wasn’t what we thought it was. It is exciting how our mind works.
To feel safe, we must justify everything and explain and understand everything. We have millions of questions to which we need to know the answers because there are so many things our minds cannot explain.
We assume that everyone sees our life as we see our life. We tend to believe that other people think the same way as we think, and whatever we feel, they feel the same way. Others do the same way we judge and misbehave and misuse it.
But it is not valid, but real love is to accept other people as they are. And this is the most significant assumption of man. The day you stop making assumptions. After that, you can start talking clearly and clearly, free from emotional reactions. Making assumptions makes your words prone to error. So don’t make assumptions.
Chapter 8. Fourth Agreement – Always Do Your The Best
The fourth Agreement is the one that allows the other three agreements to become a deep habit. The fourth Agreement is about the action of the first three: Always make your best presentation, then only first three agreements work.
When will you make your best presentation? Don’t expect that you can always be flawless with your words. Your everyday habits are powerful and are firmly fixed in your mind. But you can do better.
So don’t expect you will ever take anything personally; give your best. Don’t expect you’ll never make the second assumption, but you can make your best presentation.
For this, always do your best in any situation, neither too much nor too little. If you always give your best presentation, then no one has any way to judge you. If you don’t do yourself justice, you can somehow avoid guilt, blame, and self-punishment.
When you always do your best, you do the right thing—doing your best means working just because you like it, not because you expect a reward. If you work only for completion, without expecting any reward, then you get the pleasure of doing everything you do.
After this, the prize will come to you, but your premium will not be associated with you doing what you love to do, and if you always do your best, you can start enjoying your life. When you do your best, you learn to accept yourself.
If you always do your best, again and again, you can become a master of change. It helps you to run your life in the right way because you repeat what you have learned over and over again and learn by doing. It will be a good habit for you, which you must achieve through months of hard work.
Chapter 9. A New Dream
When you have made four Agreements with yourself, start making a New Dream which is possible for you. The author says that Moses called it the Promised Land, Buddha called it Nirvana, Jesus called it Heaven, and the Toltecs called it a New Dream.
Have an unyielding will to adopt the four agreements and start living your life with these agreements. By doing this, you can achieve “Heaven on Earth”. Along with this, respect these four Agreements.
With this, you can live your dream away from the dream of society. Whatever you want comes easily because the soul starts moving freely through you. And finally, you can get freedom.
Along with this, look at everyone with the eyes of love. With this, you can feel true love around you. And over time, your mitote may be gone forever.
This is what people have been looking for centuries. Happiness is the lost Heaven. And that is the future of humanity, which you can achieve only by doing these four Agreements. Therefore, do these four Agreements with yourself today.
From this book, we learned about those four Agreements which can significantly change our lives and take us to the true path of humanity.
When you include these four Agreements in your life, you will get away from all the wrong things in the world and achieve the way of truth, by which you can dream a New Dream of happiness: Heaven for you.
I hope you have understood the book well and will apply these four Agreements to get a happy life.
The Four Agreements Book Review
“The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz is a transformative guide to personal freedom and happiness.
In just 100 pages, Ruiz presents four powerful Agreements that can change the way we perceive ourselves and the world around us.
These Agreements, namely be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and always do your best, offer profound insights into creating a life of authenticity and joy.
Ruiz’s concise and profound wisdom serves as a practical roadmap for personal growth, self-mastery, and spiritual enlightenment. This book is a must-read for anyone seeking inner peace and liberation.