As in all his books, Heckler draws from personal experience: training his horse, cultivating presence in aikido dojos, consulting with business executives, raising children. A masterful and encompassing book, Holding the Center develops from the fulcrum of the self in the natural world. Many of Heckler’s lessons arise from his life as a householder and father. Community is a larger family—we make alliances to “take care of what matters to us.” But, as Heckler teaches, that takes listening to others with an open heart, and learning what the needs of others are.The world can be a sanctuary, if we find a balance between instinct and choice. Richard Strozzi Heckler sounds an important call about the interplay between power and generosity in these subtle and luminous essays.