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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gita in a golf setting
It's either funny or sad that none of the reviews I've read about this book, either in print or on Amazon, recognize the source of this story: the Indian epic, the Mahabharata. The Mahabharata is one of the greatest stories ever told - and the Bhagavad Gita is given smack dab in the middle of it.
"The Legend of Bagger Vance" is a retelling of this epic,...
Published on 27 July 1999

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A "Golf in the Kingdom" Wanna-be
If "Golf in the Kingdom" did not exist, this would be merely a mildly entertaining read in the vein of the "Celestine Prophecy" -- harmless metaphysical pablum for the Ramtha crowd. Because "Golf in the Kingdom" does exist, however, this is such a blatant ripoff that I find it offensive. Literally every thought in this book -- and,...
Published on 25 Feb 1999


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Mahabharata and Bhagavad Gita in a golf setting, 27 July 1999
By A Customer
It's either funny or sad that none of the reviews I've read about this book, either in print or on Amazon, recognize the source of this story: the Indian epic, the Mahabharata. The Mahabharata is one of the greatest stories ever told - and the Bhagavad Gita is given smack dab in the middle of it.
"The Legend of Bagger Vance" is a retelling of this epic, and a summary of the Bhagavad Gita, in a wonderful golf story. In the Mahabharata, Arjuna must fight a war against his step-brothers and cousins over possession of the kingdom. It is a righteous war, for he and his brothers are the heirs. But he refuses to fight, saying that war is futile and that it would be better to die than to fight one's family. So his charioteer, Lord Krishna, an incarnation of God, has to park the chariot and give him a really long lecture about why he should put aside his doubts, do his duty, and fight. Of course, it takes him the whole Bhagavad Gita to explain why this is a good thing to do, and it involves helping Arjuna understand who he really is, who God is, and what the nature of reality is. Along the way, he explains how to find peace in the midst of action, and to discover our true nature.
The Bhagavad Gita explains how to find union with God in the midst of daily life, and "The Legend of Bagger Vance" gives a very readable restatement of how to live a truly authentic life (and play great "golf" - whatever your form of "golf" is).
In "Legend," our hero, Rannulph Junah (R.Junah for those who like things spelled out) is a world-weary war veteran who is asked to play a game of golf with Walter Hagen and Bobby Jones. He reluctantly agrees, then tries to withdraw, saying that in a world torn apart by conflict and the Depression, it was futile, senseless, stupid, and insulting to hit a small dimpled ball around a course in yet one more form of combat. His caddy, Bagger Vance (Bhagavan, an honorific title for the Lord or for a spiritual master), then spends the rest of the story talking him through the 36-hole tournament, stripping away his confusion and delusion to help him find the truth of his Authentic Stroke and see the value of doing our inborn duty that life presents to us.
Does he succeed? Can we? Read this fun story and find out!
Afterwards, get Kamala Subramaniam's version of the "Mahabharata" and enjoy an even more interesting story.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars WHO IS BAGGER VANCE? YOU DECIDE!!!, 16 April 2003
By 
Nancy Martin (Pennsylvania (orig. NY)) - See all my reviews
I'm a sucker for wanting to read a book before seeing the movie and actually finished this one a few hours before I left for the theater. What I particularly enjoyed in my reading was being able to picture Matt Damon and Will Smith in the starring roles. For the first time ever, though, I enjoyed the movie more than the book. In reading through a number of Amazon reviews, I note that most of the 5 star reviews are given by those who love the game of golf even if it doesn't love them at times.
I am not a golfer so I found all the paragraphs devoted to the perfect swing, the right club and every other minute nuance of golf to be quite boring and tedious. I did, however, enjoy the lessons on life taught by Bagger Vance to anyone who would listen.
The overall story is good. In order to save Krewe Island Golf Club from going under during the depression, the owner comes up with the wonderful idea of having a first class golf match between professional golfers Bobby Jones and Walter Hagen. Unfortunately, the founding fathers of this great Southern city of Savannah will not support it unless one of their own golfers gets to compete. They choose Rannulph Junah, who once was a great golfer in his own right -- before he went off to fight in the war and returned a troubled man who likes to drink heavily. He initially refuses to compete but Bagger Vance convinces him otherwise. He helps Rannulph to reconnect with his "authentic swing" -- the swing that is ours alone -- the swing that each person is born with. At this point I'm thinking that every golfer out there is loving this. But Bagger Vance's message is farther reaching than just finding your authentic swing. While you're there, find your authentic self -- the one you were born with before you were deluded by life's experiences.
Throughout the book, you wonder if Bagger Vance is real or someone just sent here to help Junah through the match. Junah himself, in referring to Bagger, says in the book that "he was unable to assimilate his (Bagger's) wisdom or any wisdom. Nothing he said worked, then or later, except one single truth: the fact of his existance and of his love. That is all I needed then and all I will every need."
Isn't this all any one person needs in life? And it is there for the taking. That is the message of Bagger Vance or whatever higher power you deem him to be. Do yourself a favor after reading this book -- go see the movie to continue your fascination with this character and your connection to a higher being.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book about the inherently mystical nature of golf., 8 Sep 1996
By A Customer
Golf is the purest of sports because it requires even the weekend duffer to lose himself (and herself) in the "field." Golf cannot be successfully played by trying to do it. The golfer has to let go, surrender to the arising field of "world" and "mind." Pressfield has captured this most elusive of golf's mysteries in this marvelous little book.

The dedicated golfer will recognize the inherent truth in Bagger Vance's advice and counsel. The spiritual initiate will recognize the timeless "person" who is Bagger Vance. Golf and the Guru; what a combination.

The question I was left with was, Did Krishna play golf with Arjuna?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will touch your soul not to mention your golf game, 24 July 1996
By A Customer
For anyone who plays golf and embraces life with the concept
of a loving benevolent God, you not only must read this book
by Steven Pressfield, you must own it. Through prose that will
both captivate and move you, Pressfield tells the wonderful
story of a fictitious golf match between Bobby Jones, Walter
Hagen and a local war hero from South Georgia in the 1930s.
Accompanying the war hero is Bagger Vance, a mysterious black
man who turns out to be much more than a simple caddy. You
won't be able to put this down, but when you finally do after
the last page, you'll feel blessed for having read it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book!!! A must read for anyone who loves the game., 1 Jun 1999
By A Customer
This book is the best golf book I have ever read. I read this book from cover to cover on a rainy day when I was working as a caddy at a local golf course. The next time I played I shot a personal best. Don't get me wrong, this is not an instructional book. It is simply a wonderful story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful book, 31 May 1999
By A Customer
I found "Golf in the Kingdom" to be a little self important but enjoyable. This book does indeed have a familiar "Shivas Irons" ring to it, but I found it much more enjoyable, actually reading it in one marathon session!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A phenomenal novel on golf and life!, 15 Feb 1999
By A Customer
This is one of the finest books I have ever read! The author does an outstanding job of integrating the mental, metaphysical, and human aspects of both the game of golf and life itself into this book. If you are a golfer with a spiritual and/or metaphysical side this is a must read! If you liked Golf in the Kingdom, you will absolutely love this book!
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4.0 out of 5 stars VM, 3 May 2011
By 
Mr. Vinod Mehta "VM" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Legend Of Bagger Vance (Paperback)
The book is great - based on the Hindu Bhagwat Gita - which should be better acknowldged in my opinion.
The DVD version is a poor rendition of the book and misses the essence of the philosophical message.
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5.0 out of 5 stars THIS IS BOOK IS EXCELENT, 10 Feb 1999
By A Customer
Even if you don't golf, you'll love this book. It's more about life and I can relate to it in everyway. It puts you right in the scene of life.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, 17 Nov 1998
By A Customer
This is a very entertaining book. If you like this one, you have got to read "Follow the Wind" by Bo Links. It's available through Amazon.
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The Legend Of Bagger Vance
The Legend Of Bagger Vance by Steven Pressfield (Paperback - 1 Jan 2001)
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