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Standing for Something: 10 Neglected Virtues That Will Heal Our Hearts and Homes [Hardcover]

Gordon B. Hinckley , Mike Wallace
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (101 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Feb. 22 2000
An invitation to stand up and be counted . . .

No nation can be greater than the strength of its individual homes or the virtue of its people. Sadly, many today would say ours is a nation in crisis. Families are splintering around us, our children are becoming alienated from their great cultural heritage, and our leaders seem increasingly out of touch. Yet, according to Gordon B. Hinckley, president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, one cannot lose hope. The solution lies not within our governments, schools, or symbols of popular culture, but rather within ourselves, our families, and our faith.

In the tradition of William Bennett's Book of Virtues, Hinckley has created a classic look at the values that can change our world -- and how to stand up for them. Drawing on anecdotes from his own life, as well as from our nation today, he examines ten virtues that have proven through the ages to provide the most profound path to a better world: love, honesty, morality, civility, learning, forgiveness and mercy, thrift and industry, gratitude, optimism, and faith. He then shows how the two guardians of virtue -- marriage and the family -- can keep us on that path, even in difficult times.

Standing for Something is an inspiring blueprint for what we can all do -- as individuals, as a nation, and as a world community -- to rediscover the values and virtues that have historically made us strong. At once masterful and illuminating, it is a work for our time: a reflection from one man's long and productive life that dwells not on the past but on the means by which all of us can work toward a brighter future.

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"Virtue is too often neglected, if not scorned or ridiculed as old-fashioned, confining, unenlightened," laments author Gordon Hinckley, a 90-year-old ordained leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Even as he enumerates all of America's social ills (including $482 billion a year spent on gambling, rampant child neglect and abuse, school massacres, a pervasive deterioration of values) Hinckley believes there is a remedy. Chapter by chapter Hinckley presents 10 old-fashioned virtues that will return America to the glory envisioned by its founding fathers. These virtues include Love, Honesty, Morality, Civility, Learning, Forgiveness, Thrift and Industry, Gratitude, Optimism, and Faith.

Hinckley makes a compelling case for every one of these virtues, quoting extensively from the Bible but mostly using convincing personal anecdotes (after all, he is an elder with 90 years worth of stories and wisdom). In his glowing foreword, Mike Wallace (of 60 Minutes fame) writes that Gordon Hinckley is an "optimistic leader of the Mormon Church who fully deserves the almost universal admiration that he gets." Clearly, Hinkley has struck a resounding chord with the American populace, including dyed-in-the-wool New York cynics such as Wallace. Word of this book is rapidly spreading across America as simple folk clamor to steer their lives and country with a more virtuous compass.

From Publishers Weekly

Ordained in 1995 as president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Hinckley projects a warm, good-humored and tolerant persona, qualities that have been showcased in national media appearances and have served the church well in its efforts to grow internationally. (Fellow octogenarian Mike Wallace, who interviewed Hinckley for 60 Minutes in 1996, provides the foreword.) Yet this book, the first that Hinckley has published with a secular house, is less a Mormon work than a manifesto of traditional values. Hinckley expresses concern that the "secularization of America" has led to moral decay. A belief in God and the power of prayer inform his inspirational essays--on honesty, forgiveness, gratitude, thrift and civility--which are peppered with personal anecdotes and examples from religious history. Few will take issue with such moderate and compassionate statements as "helping hands can lift someone out of the mire of difficulty" or "because we live in a world where there is much harshness, hostility and meanness, there is also much need for all of us to be more merciful." However, Hinckley's rigid stance against divorce, abortion, extramarital sex and homosexuality may alienate those who disagree with his conservative vision of morality. Married for 60 years himself, the author believes that marriages between men and women, with the male partner at the head of the family, will ensure the health of society. 20-market TV satellite tour. (Feb.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Still a hard copy lover but electronic books offer many advantages

Good Book, Good Quality, instant download. Love the opportunity to bookmark, highlight, etc.
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5.0 out of 5 stars White is still White Oct. 5 2005
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Excuse me, but the reviewer who called Gordon Hinckley "naïve" needs to get real. Hinckley is now 95 years old and has just returned from a 25,000 mile world tour. He is lucid, intelligent and as the fully active leader of a 12 million member international humanitarian church, he is definitely not naïve! His book outlines the very principles that could save our civilization from its headlong rush to societal collapse. They are practical, proven principles that are guaranteed to turn us around. Yes, there's a very high probability that the critical mass of people required buy into and adopt these principles to affect such a turnaround will not be attained; but that does not diminish the necessity to proclaim these truths. Rather, it underscores the necessity for more influential people like Hinckley to espouse and proclaim them!
What would the pathetic reviewers who are intent on casting stones at Hinckley offer as a more 'realistic' plan? - Just rip off your neighbors a little bit ... try not to get caught if you're going to have an affair ... gossip if you must, but try at least to keep your close friends out of the mix ... etc.??
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Format:Paperback
This book makes its points clearly and concisely. Mr. Hinckley illustrates his points with many stories from his own experience and some borrowed anecdotes. He has organized the chapters into two parts. Each of the 10 virtues he discusses is given its own chapter in the first part. The second part has two essays: one on marriage and the other on the family. He has an epilogue that discusses the lonely position of moral leadership.
It is in this epilogue that the seemingly simple virtues discussed in the book are revealed for the difficult principles they actually are. People who say this book is simplistic or naïve can make that point somewhat persuasively untilthey understand that the author is fully aware of the massive difficulties we frail humans have in living up to these ideals in a complex and constantly changing world. We are so easily dissuaded from persisting in virtue and adopting an easier go-with-the-flow approach to life. We need the kind of reminder this book offers and I am glad to have read it and to refer to it in order to clear my vision and to refocus myself on doing what I should rather than what is easy.
The book has some notes that supply references for some of the information in the book and a helpful index.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring Jan. 2 2004
Format:Paperback
I have two copies of this book, one at work and one at home, so that I can always feel inspired by the words of the Prophet.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Chivalry is not dead Oct. 20 2003
Format:Paperback
For all of those in this world that have the dreadful and hopeless belief that chivalry is dead, for all of those that lead a quiet search in their lives for supposedly lost honor, for all of those that lack the basic and fundamental needs in their lives, and, many more; Standing For Something by Gordon B. Hinckley is the book to read. Some may choose not to read this material because they may think that it is just a book written to promote the L.D.S religion. But this book does nothing to say anything about the superiority of any religion, but instead promotes several virtues that can do nothing but 'heal our hearts and homes' as Hinckley would put it. Each chapter is on a different value, and a lot of emphasis is put into each value. The book is filled with many inspirational and powerful poems and sayings of the ancients and the modern, but all of them wise.
If all men and women in the world could read this text, it could only be for the good of the world, no matter what belief someone is, reading this will give many reasons to stand for something.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A "life instruction manual for the masses" July 18 2003
Format:Paperback
I received this book to review for the "Good Steward." It is one of the most life altering books on the market. Hinckley writes with skill but his wording is plain and simple enough for anyone to comprehend. He has produced a "life instruction manual for the masses."
Hinckley manages to take all the chaos of the entire world and break it down into something manageable with only ten basic virtues. And once you read this book, you will readily agree that if these ten virtues were applied universally by all people, the world would instantly change. Now, granted, that will never happen. But each of us has the power to alter our own micro-world by applying these virtues.
The thing that amazed me most about this book is that this leader of the Mormon Church manages to present teachings from the Bible without once becoming "preachy" or "Bible thumping." There are so few church leaders in any denomination that can manage to do that.
This book should be in the hands of every person in the world. What a difference it could make!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Deal! Feb. 26 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Very Prompt. Great Product! Better than bookstore! Highly Recommended!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book for anyone. Nov. 18 2002
Format:Paperback
Yes I am LDS. I loved this book and believe that Hinckley is an inspired man. I wonder if those who slammed the book even read it. This book is not just for those who are LDS it is for anyone who has an ounce of morals in their being.
I gave my copy to a friend who is not LDS and he loved it. He has since recommended it to members of his family. My brother also keeps a copy and he has not bee to church in 14 years.
Hinckley is not "lining his pockets" nor is he running a "MLM scheme". To call him a liar is so untrue. This man simple tries to help others. He is not paid for the job he does nor are any of the LDS leaders. It is a volunteer position. We give of our time freely and do not expect or ever get any financial reimbursement.
Please read it before you rate it.
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