Category Archives: Don Miguel Ruiz

The Virtues of Benjamin Franklin

Recently my attention has been hooked by a series of posts on the excellent blog The Art of Manliness. While I certainly do not agree with everything on the site, I am fascinated by the similarity between Benjamin Franklin’s thirteen virtues and Don Miguel Ruiz’s four agreements.

Just to recap, Don Miguel Ruiz’s four agreements are:

  1. Be impeccable with your word.
  2. Don’t take things personally.
  3. Don’t make assumptions.
  4. Always do your best.

Benjamin Franklin’s thirteen virtues are:

  1. “TEMPERANCE. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.”
  2. “SILENCE. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.”
  3. “ORDER. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.”
  4. “RESOLUTION. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.”
  5. “FRUGALITY. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.”
  6. “INDUSTRY. Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.”
  7. “SINCERITY. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.”
  8. “JUSTICE. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.”
  9. “MODERATION. Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.”
  10. “CLEANLINESS. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.”
  11. “TRANQUILLITY. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.”
  12. “CHASTITY. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.”
  13. “HUMILITY. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.”

I think the four agreements capture the essence of all thirteen of Benjamin Franklin’s virtues. I will explore this in a bit more depth in a series of posts. Each of them dealing with a particular virtue.

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Filed under Benjamin Franklin, Don Miguel Ruiz, Four Agreements, Toltec, Virtue