Spiritual Leadership: A Fresh Look at an Ancient Human Issue
  • Scott T. Allison
  • Craig T. Kocher
  • George R. Goethals
Part of the Jepson Studies in Leadership book series (JSL)


Abraham Lincoln’s iconic phrase, “the better angels of our nature,” revealed his belief that the noblest qualities of humanity would heal a divided nation. This book, Frontiers in Spiritual Leadership: Discovering the Better Angels of Our Nature, is about the expression of these noble qualities and how leaders such as Lincoln make that expression possible. Lincoln was arguably America’s greatest spiritual leader. His words and actions promoting justice, equality, and reconciliation were a spiritual tonic to war-weary citizens yearning for healing and unification. Lincoln exuded charisma with his unique look, confident mannerisms, and deft speeches that often quoted or paraphrased scripture in ways that resonated to his audience (Goethals and Allison 2014). He sprinkled his orations with quintessential phrases such as “a house divided against itself cannot stand.” The house metaphor might have had an impact by itself, but surely its spiritual origins gave it additional power. Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation contained appeals to important values and divine approval, concluding that “upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice warranted by the Constitution, upon military necessity, I invoke the considerate judgment of mankind, and the gracious favor of Almighty God.”


Leadership Study Spiritual Leadership Spiritual Development Social Welfare Policy Spiritual Intelligence 
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Copyright information

© Scott T. Allison, Craig T. Kocher, and George R. Goethals 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Scott T. Allison
  • Craig T. Kocher
  • George R. Goethals

There are no affiliations available

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