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Publisher's Summary

Hailed as a classic when it first appeared in 1972, Michael Murphy's novel combines an amiable Zen mysticism with what many consider the very mystical - and sometimes downright frustrating - sport of golf. At its center is the charming guru of the Scottish links, Shivas Irons, whose instruction is as pertinent in life as it is on the course. After a long wait, this shamanic golf pro reappeared for the follow-up novel, The Kingdom of Shivas Irons, also available from BDD Audio. 

©1998 Michael Murphy (P)1998 Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing, A Division of Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Murphy's book is going to alter many visions." ( New York Times Book Review)
"[Murphy has] put a lot of fine thoughts together here, most gracefully, and the book should have a long and prosperous life." (Joseph Campbell)

What listeners say about Golf in the Kingdom

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    5 out of 5 stars

If it were on cassette tape, my copy would have be

I can't count the number of times I have listened to this book. It's my go-to listening. I love the golf, the theories, the mystics, the fantasies and the way it's told. If you love the game of golf and its eternal spring of hope of many better golf rounds ahead and greater meanings attributed to golf, you would no doubt enjoy this reading. I also come back to it again and again in part because of the way it's read and it's theatrical production-like effect. I think I don't cancel Audible because I am afraid of losing this narration of the book:).

Enjoy.

3 people found this helpful

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golf is life, if you can just see it

I have thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book and we'll have to read it now further grass plexus ease shivers. apologies for punctuation as I am voice to texting this in. Michael Murphy was quoted several times in the book Be a Player which led me to listen to this book. I'm someone jealous of his experience with jibbers irons, something I'll not be able to have personally, but can Endeavor to live out through the writing in this book. golf in the Kingdom has not made me a better golfer yet, but I am enjoying the game much more. through that continued enjoyment I will continue to improve. I love this game, the game that can't be won only played, credit The Legend of Bagger Vance. I love everything about it. at 63 years old I'm playing the best golf of my like and choke in tournaments. I'm now exploring the mental side of the game and through that exploration and finding a spiritual side to the game. maybe that's why I've loved it so much for so long

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Boring

This book was extremely disappointing. The story had no compelling element at all and I felt like the narrator babbled for hours about uninteresting events. Very disappointing.

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captures the true nature of the game of Golf

Golf is a metaphysical Game. it Is not about tournaments and statistics, but should be a reflection of each person's journey in life; physically and mentally and spiritually. love the book and it"s grasps of the potential Golf has to bring inner peace and world peace. Indeed, the book draws me to my own experiences on the course.

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Good approach to life

I enjoyed the book. The narrator did a great job. I think the philosophies on how we should approach life and the allegory of golf is spot on. By cheating the game, you cheat yourself. The only draw back is that I felt the level of inspiration the character takes from Shivas Irons is a bit contrived at times. Not every point made by Irons is amazing. Good overall though.

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a golf story that is good for the soul

I've always loved the book. The audible version is got a bit of character that you can't exactly place but sounds perfectly familiar ever read the text. I recommend it for anyone who's the serious golfer

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If you love golf......

Great narrator. Even better story line
Was referred by a friend as a book but Audible did it justice

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Well Written But Too Mystical

This book is really well written and an enjoyable read. It definitely has some literary merit. It is also a great reminder of the spiritual side of golf, as well as a call not to think of the game as Western culture thinks of the world: overly technical, scientistic, or mechanistic. Great golf, Murphy suggests, does not boil down to technique. Instead, it is a microcosm of the world, life, psychology; it is a chance to improve yourself along with your game, or at least a chance to better understand yourself. It's almost a hymn to the poetry of the game with some great poetry of its own.

That said, it spends a lot of time - too much for me - on mysticism, what it calls "true gravity," para psychology, metaphysics (not the stuff of Western philosophy but the stuff of crystals and astrology), self help, and so forth. In that sense, it's almost like its theme (golf) is secondary and inconsequential to the main substance of the book (basically, I'm guessing whatever they teach at the Esalen Institute, which was co-founded by the author). I bet the author could have written the same exact book about any other sport or mystical experience.

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Mind blown

The first two thirds of the book was great. He kind of lost me at the end. Overall a good book.

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golf in the kingdom

golf the way golf should be.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-08-18

brilliant i loved it

The narrator was born to read this book.
what a book ....one of my favourites for sure

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  • emma
  • 08-02-16

Golf philosophy

The lovely Scottish voice of John Hannah (Four Weddings and a Funeral) attracted me to this audiobook, which is a fantastic tale of golf and spirituality - a young man travels to Scotland to play a famous course and falls under the tutelage of the local golf pro / guru. I'm not a golfer but you don't have to know too much about the game to follow the book. I found the philosophy a bit new age for my liking, but still an enjoyable listen.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-28-20

Outstanding

there are great teachings here, for golf and life. this book has brought me back to the game i love.