What a thrill to receive feedback from people who visit my blog, more so when the topic they are responding to is about books. With regards to my list of top ten books…..hmmm! I must warn you that I am NOT your usual bookworm who buys what’s hot. In fact, I am a snob in many areas in my life, from music, food, and yes, books and so deliberately avoid anything that’s uso or popular most of the time.
But since you ask, here is a list of books that touched me in some profound way or had a lingering effect on me.
1) Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell–This is a book in Q and A style with the great mythologist Joseph Campbell as interviewed by Bill Moyers. They talk about how myths rule our lives and give it meaning and structure among other things. I just love the way Campbell is so erudite and insightful and can make the case for myths as relevant to every era including ours.
2) Conversations With God Book 1 by Neale Donald Walsch. –This book just blew me away. It opened up my view of God and His/Her unconditional love for us all. I loved it so much I formed discussion groups and even invited the author to visit Manila and give two talks.
3) The Power Of Now by Eckart Tolle—The book takes the reader to a very deep understanding of being in the here and now. I could write volumes about this but I do not wish to spoil anyone’s journey by coating their experience of this book with my own take on it.
4) One Taste by Ken Wilber—I must warn you about this guy. He is definitely a hard read. You have to give his books about 50 pages before you get hooked. The first book I bought by him was A Brief History Of Everything. This guy has the answers to all the big questions of life but he answers it coming from a mind that seems to have studied the way every great thinker has answered it. And then he gives you his take that goes farther than anyone else. I’ve read so many of his works and I really love the guy. Another book of his that is easier to read is No Boundaries. He is definitely THE philosopher of our time.
5) Awareness By De Mello—The writer is a priest whose books are among those banned by the conservative wing of the Church. His understanding of God, faith, human nature, life seems to have been brought about by years of experience in eastern and Christian spirituality.
6) Down Under by Bill Bryson—A travel book on Australia. Funny, witty, informative and full of traveler’s tales that can keep you reading till you finish it.Thoroughly enjoyable and informative. I understand his other books are great too.
6) Love Poems by Pablo Neruda—This guy dances, prays, makes love with his poetry. Try to get the soundtrack of Il Postino on CD. You will weep with delight hearing his poetry recited by famous actors and actresses.
7) The Art Of Possibility By Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander—If you are a teacher like me, you will appreciate the writers’ approach to bringing out the best from students.
Memoirs Of A Geisha by Arthur Golden—A story of womanhood, love and a person’s coming into her own in the secret, fascinating, and sooo Japanese world of geishas in Gion,. Marvelously narrated, I could not put this down.
9) The Road Less Traveled by Dr. M. Scott Peck—Here is a book that started me on my spiritual journey. Still a great read.
10) The Gift by Hafiz—This is a poetry book written by a Sufi poet who is similar to Rumi, but even more joyful.
These are not my all-time favorites but more like top- of- mind right now. But it’s an indication of what I’ve been feeding my mind the past few years.