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Five Books to Read for the Summer

For summer reading, I tend to go to GatesNotes for inspiration. This year, I have a backlog of books I want to read.

I’m doing a Physiology summer course at University, and want to deepen my knowledge of the mind-body connection. These are the books I’m reading over the next few weeks. I hope they can inspire you to a new read.

Self-Observation: The Awakening of Conscience (by Red Hawk)

“Knowing others is wisdom; knowing the self is enlightenment” (Lao Tsu, Tao Te Ching, Sutra 33)

This book is an in-depth ‘owner’s manual’ about the art of self-observation. The book offers ‘methods capable of restoring attention to a fully functional and powerful tool for success in life and relationships.’

I’m deeply interested in attention and distractions. Many of us struggle with an inability to focus and . The work of disconnecting from distractions and busywork remains one of my core challenges, and it’s an ongoing process for me to create a conscious  daily life. Meditation and creating conscious habits have supported my life profoundly. I’m hoping this book adds a deeper layer to that.

Biology of Belief (by Bruce H. Lipton)

“Unleashing the power of Consciousness, Matter & Miracles”.

From the book: “Stunning new scientific discoveries about the biochemical effects of the brain’s functioning show that all the cells of your body are affected by your thoughts. Bruce H. Lipton PhD, a renowned cell biologist, describes the precise molecular pathways through which this occurs.”

I’m already halfway through this book, and it’s a fascinating read.

Into the Woods (by John Yorke)

“How stories work and why we tell them” is the subheading of this book. It was gifted to me by a colleague after a discussion about the Hero’s Journey. (If you’re unfamiliar with the Hero’s Journey, it’s a template / narrative structure for storytelling. In short: A hero is called to go on a journey, meets challenges, and later returns home, transformed. Think of any movie you’ve seen, and see for yourself!)

This book is written by a British script writer and the creator of the BBC Writers’ Academy. Hoping to get a deeper insight into storytelling and how most narrative forms have unifying shapes.

Mistakes were made (but not by me): Why we justify foolish beliefs, bad decisions and hurtful acts (by Carol Tavris, Elliot Aronson)

I have started this book and am already personally challenged and mind-boggled by how we are able to deceive ourselves.

It’s about cognitive dissonance, how we rationalize and self-deceive. It’s fascinating because it speaks so clearly to why we do what we do. Although I’m not even halfway through it, I think this will become an essential read.

An Interrupted Life: The Diaries and Letters of Etty HilleSum 1941-43

Referred to as an ‘adult Anne Frank’, this book is the chronicles of a young Jewish woman who died at Auschwitz.

A good friend of mine read it last year and brought it up several times in conversations. Very excited, and feeling slightly honored actually, to get to read her innermost thoughts about life and love.