Today I wanted to share with you some of my favorite books that help to lift my spirit and remind me of why I am here. It is so easy to get caught up in our day-to-day lives or concern ourselves with things that really are not worthy of us. I think too often we give our power away to things that are not important and attach our happiness to circumstances or material things. I always find that life is a struggle to keep my mind set on what I want for my life and to be truly grateful in every moment. That is why I need to take the time to set my mind on higher and deeper things and when I do, I always feel a whole lot better. Here are 5 of my favorite reads.
1. Touching Peace by Thich Nhat Hanh
This book teaches how practicing mindfulness in our individual every day lives can lead to a more peaceful inner and outer world. This book really helped me when I was recovering from my eating disorder. It helped me to recognize the present and stop getting all wrapped up in imagined future schemes or what I did or didn’t do in the past. It also got my mind set on bigger things than me and made me see that if I decide to change my mind about the world, the world will change. There is also a chapter on mediation and how to bring mindful awareness to our everyday activities, like eating or walking. That I also found extremely helpful. This is by far one of my favorites and always lifts my spirit whenever I open it up.
2. The 21 Day Consciousness Cleanse by Debbie Ford
Debbie Ford is an amazing author and spiritual teacher. This was another book I picked up on my road to recovering from my eating disorder. It is a 21-day cleanse of the mind to rid yourself of toxic thought patterns and mindsets and replace those with new positive and uplifting ones. In this book, Debbie Ford takes you on a three week journey to connect with your soul’s deepest purpose and desires. It is broken up into three sections for each of the three weeks. The first week deals with the past and outdated beliefs and negative thought patterns. The second week focuses on the present and the third week takes you into your future, the way you want it to be. This book really helped me. When I did this cleanse, I learned a lot about myself that I didn’t realize and for the first time in my life began to discover who I really was. Before I read this book I had no idea what my purpose was or what I desired for my life. This book is a great tool for anyone who is looking to live a more fulfilling life and discover their purpose.
3. The Gift Of Change by Marianne Williamson
Another favorite spiritual teacher of mine is Marianne Williamson. In this book, Marianne offers us the answer to all our pain and suffering and helps us to see that we can choose something different for our lives. She teaches that there are only two ways we can view the world and that is either through love or through fear. We take every action and every thought from one of those two places. Love not just being an emotion, but a powerful force and the only thing that is real. When we take our actions from a place of fear or lack, we create suffering for ourselves, but when we instead focus on love and take responsibility for our thoughts and let go of our resistance to love, then we lead a peaceful life. I love how we have that choice and never understood these principles before reading this book. It is inspiring and uplifting and it will change your life and the way you view the world.
4. The World Peace Diet by Will Tuttle
This was the first book I ever got on veganism. I was never interested in becoming vegan for any reasons other than ethical ones and that I just knew eating any other way was wrong for me. I was on my spiritual journey and desiring to live an unselfish life, when I one day awakened to the fact that selfishness was in every meal that I ate. I wanted a more peaceful life and to be a more loving person, but realized that everyday I am a part of massive suffering and violence. That revelation was something that I couldn’t live with, so I made the decision to become vegan overnight. I don’t remember how I came across this book, but it was exactly what I needed and spoke to me about everything that I knew deep down inside to be true. This is not a diet book, but an awakening to your souls natural compassion. It touches on everything from when our herding culture began to how our view of animals as commodities rather than sentient beings took. It also talks about different religions and how they all focus on love, yet this love does not extend to all beings. Will Tuttle shows us the link between the way we treat our fellow creatures and the exploitation and domination that humans inflict on each other.
5. Jivamukti Yoga by Sharon Gannon and David Life
Shraon Gannon and David Life founded the Jivamukti school of yoga, Jivamukti meaning liberation. This book doesn’t just focus on yoga as a physical exercise, but a way to liberate our body and mind from toxicity and find our true selves and connect with peace. It touches on the importance of ahimsa (non-violence) and yoga as a way to be a kinder, more compassionate human being. One of the best yoga books I have ever come across and my favorite yoga practice, by far.