Just a short list of some media that’s inspired me to live more deeply and authentically.  Please share what’s inspired you, what you’re reading now?

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

The Yoga Sutras were written some 2,000 years ago (yes, yogis, the date is debateable), and they were written in Sanskrit, a language of such subtlety that each syllable can have many possible meanings.  The sutras speak to the human condition and the challenges we face as humans.  These challenges remain the same whether you’re living in India 2,000 years ago or the United States today.  Read these often, and choose many translations.

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

A powerful reminder that we can only ever live in the present moment.  Tolle pulls from the spiritual teachings of many religions which echo this message across time and culture.

How to be Happy All the Time by Paramhansa Yogananda

I borrowed this from a friend while going through yoga teacher training.  Incidentally, during the time that I went through yoga teacher training I experienced many transforming shifts in my external life circumstances.  This book provided a simple reminder that we have control over our emotions, thoughts, and reactions to external events.  Happiness is a choice, and one worth making.

Anything by Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh has an extensive library of short but powerful books reminding us of the power of staying present.  He has some books tailored especially for peace activists, which appealed to me as I was working as an activist at the time I found these teachings.

Remember, Be Here Now by Ram Dass

I read this book in my third year of college, and it resonated as truth.  Many of the yoga terms went over my head, as I’d yet to find my yoga practice and did not understand sanskrit or yoga philosophy.  I recently went back and re-read the book and found deeper layers of truth that I missed the first time around.

Illusions by Richard Bach

Illusions, and Bach’s previous novel Jonathan Livingston Seagull, proved important reading for my angsty teenage self.  Both books helped me open my eyes to the limitations I was imposing on my life.  Limiting your abilities and aspirations through belief is a lesson I continue to learn again and again, and each negative belief I drop is more powerful than the last.  I still use the advice of the “Reluctant Messiah” by opening up books to random pages for inspiration and advice.  I never fail to be disappointed.

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