My house is full of books. I find it comforting to know that any time I need a soulful pick-me-up, an inspirational read is just fingertips away. As a yogi, and therefore a student of life, I am always on the lookout for new must-read books. I often reference NPR New York Times, and my favorite yogi blogs, but the best suggestions always come from friends, other yogis or yoga teachers.
And so I thought I would share my favorite books with my favorite people – the BuddhiBox community. These are the list of books that have built the foundations of my yoga practice, off my mat. For me, these books are so much more than words on pages. They provide the blueprint that helps me live as authentically as possible.
- The Power of Kindness: The Unexpected Benefits of Leading a Compassionate Life, by Piero Ferruci
“Love has no contingencies”
This book is filled with simple, honest truth. It is soul food. The publisher sums the book up perfectly saying Ferruci explores the many surprising facets of kindness and argues that it is this trait that will not only lead to our own individual happiness and the happiness of those around us, but will guide us in a world that has become cold, anxious, difficult, and frightening. A must have to read again and again and again.
- Warrior of the Light: A Manual, by Paoulo Coelho
“A warrior of the light knows what he wants. And he has no need to waste time on explanations. ”
Coelho’s ‘The Alchemist’, is another amazing book that I love and his most popular. Warrior of the Light is less spoken about but I just adore how it inspires readers to live out our dreams, to embrace the uncertainty of life, and to rise to our own unique destiny. I feel that the way he describe a warrior’s humility and strength, is comparative to how I feel when practicing warrior postures on my mat.
- The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living, by The Dalai Lama
“The more honest you are, the more open, the less fear you will have, because there’s no anxiety about being exposed or revealed to others.”
I had the good fortune of seeing the Dalai Lama speak 3 times in the last 7 years. I can honestly say, his energy is pure joy. His laugh is authentic, and what he teaches is so simple, you will wonder why we as individuals feel the need to complicate things. This book is exactly what it says – a handbook for (authentic) living.
- Meditations from the Mat: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga, by Rolf Gates and Katrina Kenison
“The greatest teacher who ever lived is our constant companion.”
I was introduced to this book after I completed my yoga teacher training, from a dear friend. It is an easy read because it is broken down by daily excerpts or meditations. Which makes the text easily digestible, as you are only expected to read it one day at a time, which allows you to be present and really absorb all the wisdom the authors have to offer. Gates and Kenison present the basis for yoga life beautifully. They explain the eight limb path and yogic philosophy with personal stories, specific historical references, and classic rock quotes. You can read a passage 5 times and each time you will receive a different perspective. The book evolves with you.
- The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom (A Toltec Wisdom Book), by Don Miguel Ruiz
” Be impeccable with your word.”
My favorite. This book changed my life. It is only 135 pages in length, but is meant to be read slowly so you can absorb every single syllable. It is packed full of beauty, truth, love, and common sense. It is so simple. I find myself going back to the lessons whenever life challenges me. When I need to make sense of what seems senseless. It is a guide to living your truth and being the best person you can be. It is a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform life into a new experience full of freedom, love, and true happiness.
Did these books make your must-read list? Which ones did I miss? Please leave suggestions in the comments. Join the BuddhiBox Book Club on Facebook. We are an on-line community of individuals seeking inspiration, empowerment, and community.