September 27, 2005

The Road Less Traveled

Snapshots In My Time...
Of My Time.....Hauntings.

LOS ANGELES - Author M. Scott Peck, who wrote the best-seller “The Road Less Traveled” and other self-helps, died Sunday. He was 69.

Peck died at his home in Connecticut, longtime friend and Los Angeles publicist Michael Levine said. He had suffered from pancreatic and liver duct cancer.

Dr. Peck was born on May 22, 1936 in New York City, the younger of two sons to David Warner Peck, a prominent lawyer and jurist, and his wife Elizabeth Saville. He married Lily Ho in 1959, and they have three grown children.

Dr. Peck received his B.A. degree magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1958, and his M.D. degree from the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in 1963. From 1963 until 1972, he served in the United States Army, resigning from the position of Assistant Chief Psychiatry and Neurology Consultant to the Surgeon General of the Army with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and the Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster. From 1972 to 1983, Dr. Peck was engaged in the private practice of psychiatry in Litchfield County, Connecticut.

On March 9, 1980 at the age of 43, Dr. Peck was nondenominationally baptized by a Methodist minister in an Episcopalian convent (where he has frequently gone on retreat).

Dr. Peck's first book, The Road Less Traveled, was published by Simon & Schuster in 1978. The book has sold over six million copies to date in North America alone, and has been translated into over 20 languages

In 1984, Dr. Peck and Mrs. Peck met with nine others to establish The Foundation for Community Encouragement, a tax-exempt, nonprofit, public educational foundation, whose mission is to promote and teach the principles of Community. The Foundation (FCE) has seventy selected and trained leaders who conduct workshops for the general public and for organizations as diverse as churches, schools, government agencies, prisons, universities and businesses - throughout the world. Although now both retired from FCE's Board of Directors, the Pecks continue to serve FCE in an "elder" status which represents the rare privilege of being able to give advice without having any responsibility.

As a result of his pioneering community building work, Dr. Peck is the recipient of the 1984 Kaleidoscope Award for Peacemaking and the 1994 Temple International Peace Prize. In 1996 he was also recipient of The Learning, Faith and Freedom Medal from Georgetown University.


The Soul & God

"I believe that the soul is the deepest part of us. I believe it is the part that God wants us to be. I believe that our souls are not born fully developed and that this world, as Keats put it, is "the vale of soul-making." I think that this is largely a cognitive process, that the ego can try to cognate in harmony with the soul and with what William James called "the unseen order of things." Or it could just ignore it, which is probably what most people do. Reminds me of a quote of Elton Trueblood’s, a famous Quaker, who said that "You can accept Jesus, you can reject Jesus, but you cannot reasonably ignore him." And I think that is what most people do, is to unreasonably ignore him, and God. And then, the ego can be in active battle with God and running away from God. I think that God has a relationship with all of us, in the sense we’re all in relationship with God, but for many people that relationship is one of indifference or it's a running away from relationship. A lot of people run scared. For good reason, as St. Paul said, "It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God."

M. Scott Peck


  1. Hi Hodgepodger,
    I never heard that he passed away, I have readed his work. It was during my journey many years ago, his writing was very good! Take care Holly

  2. hi holly! his passing was ironic as we had just been talking about his book at work a few days before.