Don Miguel Ruiz

Miguel Ángel Ruiz Macías (born August 27, 1952), better known as Don Miguel Ruiz, is a Mexican author of Toltec spiritualist and neoshamanistic texts.

Don Miguel Ruiz
Born (1952-08-27) August 27, 1952 (age 69)
Pen nameDon Miguel Ruiz
GenrePersonal growth, self help
Notable worksThe Four Agreements, The Mastery Of Love, The Voice Of Knowledge, The Fifth Agreement

His work is best-received among members of the New Thought movement that focuses on ancient teachings as a means to achieve spiritual enlightenment. Ruiz is listed as one of the Watkins 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People in 2018.[1] Some have associated Ruiz's work with Carlos Castaneda, author of The Teachings of Don Juan.[2]


Don Miguel Ruiz was born in rural Mexico, the youngest of 13 children. He attended medical school, and became a surgeon.[3] For several years he practiced medicine with his brothers.[citation needed]

A near-fatal car accident changed the direction of his life. He promptly returned to his mother to acquire greater moral understanding. He then apprenticed himself to a shaman, and eventually moved to the United States.[citation needed]

While the Toltec culture left no written records, Ruiz employs the word Toltec to signify a long tradition of indigenous beliefs in Mexico, such as the idea that a Nagual (shaman) guides an individual to personal freedom. After exploring the human mind from an indigenous as well as scientific perspective, Ruiz combines traditional wisdom with modern insights.[citation needed]

The Four Agreements, published in 1997; was a New York Times bestseller for more than a decade. Other books have followed: The Mastery of Love, The Voice of Knowledge, The Circle of Fire, The Four Agreements Companion Book and The Fifth Agreement, a collaboration with his son Don José. All of his books are international bestsellers.[4] His The Toltec Art of Life and Death was published in late 2015.[5]

Fluent in Spanish and English, he often lectures and leads retreats in the United States.[6] In February 2002, Ruiz suffered a near-fatal heart attack. The damage from the heart attack and subsequent coma left him with a heart functioning at only 16% of capacity and in constant pain.[7] He claims to have handed over an Eagle-Knight lineage[8] to his son Don José Ruiz whose primary focus is healing patients with Cluster Headaches enter unconscious states. [9] On October 9, 2010, Ruiz underwent a heart transplant at a hospital in Los Angeles. He was at a retreat at the Lotus Ranch in Wimberley, Texas when he was notified that a heart was available, and had chartered a plane to get back to Los Angeles.[6]

The Four AgreementsEdit

His most famous book, The Four Agreements, was published in 1997 and has sold around 10 million copies in the U.S.[10] and has been translated into 46 languages. The book advocates personal freedom from beliefs and agreements that we have made with ourselves and others that are creating limitation and unhappiness in our lives.[11] It was featured on the Oprah television show.[12] The Four Agreements are:

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

The U.S. Air Force created a challenge coin engraved with the Four Agreements, and Ruiz is referenced as a "National Heirloom of Mexico".[13]

Quotes from The Four AgreementsEdit

  • Be impeccable with your word. ”Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love."
  • Don't take anything personally. ”Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering."
  • Don't make assumptions. ”Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life."
  • Always do your best. ”Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret."[14]

In 2000, Don Miguel Ruiz published The Four Agreements Companion Book.

His son, Don Jose Ruiz, subsequently released a sequel with his father titled The Fifth Agreement, which added a further agreement:[15]

  • Be skeptical, but learn to listen.


  • The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom (A Toltec Wisdom Book), 1997, Amber-Allen Publishing, ISBN 978-1-878424-31-0
  • The Mastery of Love: A Practical Guide to the Art of Relationship (A Toltec Wisdom Book), 1999, Amber-Allen Publishing, ISBN 978-1-878424-42-6
  • The Four Agreements Companion Book: Using The Four Agreements to Master the Dream of Your Life (A Toltec Wisdom Book)", 2000, Amber-Allen Publishing, ISBN 978-1-878424-48-8
  • The Circle of Fire (Toltec Wisdom), 2001, Amber-Allen Publishing, ISBN 978-1-878424-52-5
  • Wisdom from the Four Agreements (Charming Petites), 2003, Peter Pauper Press, ISBN 0-88088-990-X
  • Wisdom from the Mastery of Love (Charming Petites), 2003, Peter Pauper Press, ISBN 0-88088-425-8
  • The Voice of Knowledge: A Practical Guide To Inner Peace, 2004, Amber-Allen Publishing, ISBN 978-1-878424-54-9
  • The Fifth Agreement: A Practical Guide to Self-Mastery, 2010, Amber-Allen Publishing, ISBN 978-1-878424-68-6
  • The Toltec Art of Life and Death: A Story of Discovery, 2015, HarperCollins, ISBN 978-0-00-814796-9
  • The Three Questions, 2018, HarperCollins, ISBN 978-0-06-239109-4
  • The Wisdom of the Shamans, 2019, Hierophant Publishing, ISBN 978-1-938289-84-2


  1. ^ Watkins’ Spiritual 100 List for 2018
  2. ^ Tipton, James. "The Four Agreements And The Mastery Of Love : Mexico Culture & Arts". Retrieved April 10, 2020.
  3. ^ Nawotka, Ed (April 2, 2021). "All the World's a Stage: PW Talks with Don Miguel Ruiz". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved April 7, 2021.
  4. ^ "don Miguel Ruiz". Archived from the original on December 6, 2013. Retrieved April 30, 2014.
  5. ^ Ruiz, Don Miguel; Emrys, Barbara (October 27, 2015). The Toltec Art of Life and Death: A Story of Discovery (9780062390929): Don Miguel Ruiz, Barbara Emrys: Books. ISBN 978-0062390929.
  6. ^ a b "Don Miguel Ruiz' heart Transplant Oct. 9th : An Exclusive Conversation on his New Heart". YouTube. November 6, 2010. Retrieved April 30, 2014.
  7. ^ "Miguel Ruiz official website, About don Miguel". Archived from the original on July 10, 2015. Retrieved February 28, 2015.
  8. ^ Don José Luis interview by Julia Griffin
  9. ^ "Events, Workshops, Retreats — don Miguel Ruiz". April 6, 2019. Archived from the original on April 6, 2019. Retrieved September 18, 2020.
  10. ^ "The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom [NOOK Book]". barnes and noble. Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  11. ^ "Publishers Weekly Magazine". April 18, 2013. Retrieved May 6, 2014.
  12. ^ "The Oprah Winfrey's Official Website". Archived from the original on September 22, 2008. Retrieved October 9, 2010.
  13. ^ "Don Miguel Ruiz". Unity of Houston. Retrieved September 21, 2020.
  14. ^ "Don Miguel Angel Ruiz's Profile, Biography & Heritage". Katagogi. Archived from the original on September 22, 2010. Retrieved April 30, 2014.
  15. ^ Ruiz, Miguel; Ruiz, Don Jose; Mills, Janet (2010). The Fifth Agreement: A Practical Guide to Self-mastery; a Toltec Wisdom Book. Amber-Allen Pub. ISBN 9781878424686.

External linksEdit