Director’s Page > Booklist
Ideas from the books and authors listed here have been strongly influential in my life and many of them in my personal conception of Mindport. The list is organized in alphabetical order by subject.
West of the Thirties
Hall, Edward T.
The author’s account of a period spent on the Navajo Indian Reservation in the 1930’s
Indian Givers: How Indians of the Americas Transformed the World
The Native people of the New World made numerous contributions to our culture which have seldom been acknowledged.
The Hidden Dimension
Hall, Edward T.
The anthropology of space. I recommend all of Hall’s books.
Anthropology, Culture, Africa
An account of the Life of Adrian Boshier, an Epileptic who walked the bush of Africa for 20 years and was initiated as a Shaman by an indigenous tribe.
Testament to the Bushman
Van der Post, Laurens; Taylor, Jane
Anthropology, Culture, Africa,
A book about the Bushman (!Kung) people of the African Kalahari Desert which was published simultaneously with a film of the same title. You can’t go wrong with any book by Van der Post. A fascinating man and an excellent writer.
Of Water and the Spirit: Ritual, Magic, and Initiation in the Life of an African Shaman
Some, Malidoma Patrice
Anthropology, Culture, Africa, men
Some was abducted into a mission school at a young age. Eventually he returned to his people and underwent male initiation in his own culture.
Anthropology, Culture, Australian Aborigines, anthropology
A magical book. One of the best about the Australian Aborigines.
The Dance of Life: The Other Dimension of Time
Hall, Edward T.
Anthropology, culture, time
Time perception in different cultures
The Vein of Gold: A Journey to Your Creative Heart
A companion volume to Cameron’s book, The Artist’s Way
The Artist’s Way: A Course in Discovering and Recovering your Creativity
Cameron’s book is one of the best I’ve seen on overcoming one’s fears and resistance to making art, and also on the emotional PROCESS of artistic creation. Many helpful exercises.
The Night Visitor and Other Stories
Art, Anthropology, Fiction, Stories, culture
I’ve included this book because I love the story entitled Assembly Line. It describes an encounter between a fatcat businessman gringo and a poor peasant basket maker in Oaxaca. Should give every artist a warm feeling of vindication.
Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain
Probably the best How to Draw book ever written. It works!
Drawing on the Artist Within
See also Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain. More on drawing and creativity
Life, Paint, and Passion: Reclaiming the magic of spontaneous expression
Cassou, Michell and Cubley, Stewart
Art, painting, education, psychology
A wonderfully inspiring book, particularly for those whose forays into artistic creation are intimidated by the “art establishment.”
Art & Physics: Space, Time, and Light
Art, science, physics, culture
Physics and art have often been preoccupied with parallel world views at any given moment in history. This book explores those parallels.
I don’t think Watson has ever written a boring book.
Plant and Planet
Biology, Ecology, Plants
Enduring Seeds: Native American Agriculture & Wild Plant Preservation
Nabhan, Gary Paul
Nabhan is one of those authors who, like John McPhee, writes interestingly on any subject he tackles.
A Garlic Testament
An in-depth account of growing garlic in the Southwest. Interesting from both practical and personal standpoints.
Gathering the Desert
Nabhan, Gary Paul
Biology, Native, Plants
A fascinating discussion of Native uses of desert plants.
Beyond Supernature: A natural History of the Supernatural
You can count on almost any book of Watson’s to be fascinating.
Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A practical Guide to Creative Career Design
Growing a Business
Hawkins was the founder of Smith and Hawkins and is proponent of human-centered business. His books are a must-read if you are in business or contemplate starting one.
My Name is Chellis Glendinning and I’m in Recovery from Western Civilization
Ecopsychology: Restoring the Earth, Healing the Mind
Rozak, Theodore; Gomes, Mary; Kanner, Allen P. (Editors)
A collection of essays
Dumbing Us Down: The hidden curriculum of compulsory schooling
Gatto was an award-winning teacher in New York who has gone on the road with a passionate plea for drastic changes in the educational system.
I recommend all Illich’s books for anyone who is interested in understanding our society from a thought-provoking viewpoint.
Endangered Minds: Why children don’t think and what we can do about it.
Healy, Jane M. PhD
Proper brain development of children requires that they be exposed to the right stimulus at the right age. Excessive TV viewing, inadequate daycare, and other factors contribute to subtle and more obvious disabilities when the children grow older. This is a must-read for parents and educators.
High Tide in Tucson: Essays from Now or Never
A set of essays on diverse subjects as warm and personable as Kingsolver’s novels.
The Spell of the Sensuous
Evolution, biology, culture
Highly recommended. An exploration of our instinctive and evolutionary relationship with the earth and the natural world.
How the Leopard Changed its Spots: The Evolution of Complexity
Ideas about how biological forms are created.
Genetics and the Manipulation of Life: The Forgotten Factor of Context
Much more determines the form an organism takes than simply its genes.
Not In Our Genes: Biology, Ideology, and Human Nature
Lowontin, R.C.; Rose, Steven; Kamin, Leon J.
Inheritance is far more complex a subject than we’re led to believe.
Guide, biology, mushrooms,
The best and most personable guide to mushrooms I’ve found. Some photographs in the book were taken by Nancy Burnett, a few of whose photographs also hang at Mindport.
The Birder’s Handbook: A Field Guide to the Natural History of North American Birds
Erlich, Dobkin, & Wheye
Guide, Biology, birds
If you want to know something about a bird species beyond just a name and picture, this is the book for you.
Between Pacific Tides
Ricketts, Calvin, & Hedgepeth
Guide, Biology, marine
A classic guide to intertidal life, written by Ed Ricketts, the character in Steinbeck’s novels known as “Doc.” Ricketts style is personal and accessible. Read the section on the mating of crabs, for example.
A People’s History of the United States
History of the US told from the perspective of the disadvantaged. What we see happening now is nothing new. It’s been going on from the beginning.
Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong
Loewen, James W.
This book makes it obvious why I hated history when I was in school. The subject takes on a new fascination when you start getting the truth.
Woman as Healer: A Panoramic Survey of the Healing Activities of Women from Prehistoric Times to the Present
History, healing, women
See the subtitle above!
Cadillac Desert: The American West and its Disappearing Water
History, water, ecology
This book about water rights in the history of the American West reads like a novel. Nothing boring here.
The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language
The Alphabetization of the Popular Mind
The history of literacy and its effect on thought and culture.
The Seven Laws of Money
If you read no other book about money, read this one. The philosophical and spiritual aspects of money.
The Secret Life of Money: Teaching Tales of Spending, Receiving, Saving, and Owing
Money in its spiritual aspect.
Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence
Dominguez, Joe ; Robin, Vicki
Money, voluntary simplicity
Not a get rich quick book. About streamlining your life to essentials and accumulating enough money to live simply without working at an outside job.
A World of Ideas
Moyers interviews a diversity of thinkers. Transcript of the video interviews.
Uncommon Wisdom: Conversations with Remarkable People
People, science, philosophy
Capra discusses the ideas of various contemporary scientific thinkers such as Gregory Bateson, Stanislav Grof, Hazel Henderson, and others.
Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness
Lovingkindness starts with kindness to oneself, then expanding to others.
Chuang Tsu: Inner Chapters
Feng, Gia-Fu; English, Jane (Translators)
Liberating Taoist wisdom accompanied by the meditative photography of Jane English. A nice book for short browses and contemplation.
Trialogues at the Edge of the West: Chaos, Creativity, and the Resacralization of the World
Abraham, Ralph; McKenna, Terence; Sheldrake, Rupert
Philosophy, science, chaos, soul
Discussion amongst the tree authors on the connection between science and spirituality.
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
This is a classic book which came out in the late 60’s. Pirsig’s discussion of Quality provides food for thought anyone involved in creating things.
The Sibling Society
Bly argues that our society has never grown up and operates at an adolescent level.
House as a Mirror of Self: Exploring the Deeper Meaning of Home
Marcus, Clare Cooper
The spaces we live in say thing about us, and also affect our emotions and lives in a deep way.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
Covey, Stephen R.
A book full of helpful techniques for managing yourself, your family and relationships, or organizations.
Revisioning Men’s Lives
Kupers, Terry A. M.D.
A deep look at what it is to be male and how male roles need to be redefined.
Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience
Don’t let the heavy title and the spelling of the author’s name put you off. This is a book about creativity, and keeping yourself on the tender edge between insecurity and boredom.
We: Understanding the Psychology of Romantic Love
If you’re in love, read this one. Also try Johnson’s other book: She and He, about feminine and masculine psychology respectively, seen from a mythological perspective.
Memories, Dreams, Reflections
Psychology, Jung, biography
Jung’s autobiography. Probably his most readable work for the layperson.
The Magician Within: Accessing the Shaman in the Male Psyche
Moore, Robert ; Gillette, Douglas
Psychology, men, male psyche
A good book for men who work in science or technology, particularly.
The Gods in Everyman: A New Psychology of Men’s Lives and Loves
Psychology, mythology, men
Bolen discusses several archetypal gods found in the male psyche. Useful insights for both men and women.
The Goddesses in Everywoman: A New Psychology of Women
Psychology, mythology, women
Bolen discusses several archetypal goddesses found in the female psyche. Useful insights for both women and men.
Care of the Soul: A Guide for Cultivating Depth and Sacredness in Everyday Life
Psychology, Soul, spirit
Highly recommended. An owner’s manual for the soul.
The Reenchantment of Everyday Life
Psychology, soul, spirit
Moore’s books contain a lot of meat ( Or soy protein, for vegetarians), making them worth buying to keep permanently on your shelves for leisurely reading and digestion.
Soul Mates: Honoring the Mysteries of Love and Relationship
Psychology, Soul, spirit, relationship
A philosophical exploration of the manifestation of soul in intimate relationships. Highly recommended.
Recovering the Soul: A Scientific and Spiritual Search
Dossey, Larry M.D.
Rediscovering the concept of Soul for the scientifically oriented.
The Soul’s Code: In Search of Character and Calling
Hillman was mentor and teacher to the more popularly known Thomas Moore. Hillman seems to have taken a clue from his student and has published, in this work, a volume more accessible to the lay reader than was his earlier work.
Complexity: The Emerging Science at the Edge of Order and Chaos
Waldorp, M. Mitchell
Science, Chaos, complexity
Science, chaos, complexity theory
This was the first popular book published on the subject.
Sensitive Chaos: The Creation of Flowing Forms in Water and Air
Science, Chaos, natural forms
This book came out in the sixties and was an early precursor to the scientific world’s preoccupation with complexity theory arising ten or fifteen years later. Excellent photos and illustrations, and in some ways a more general and understandable presentation that much of the material which came later.
Order Out of Chaos: Man’s New Dialogue with Nature
Science, Chaos, philosophy
Sympathetic Vibrations: Reflections on Physics as a Way of Life
A good book to inspire the layperson’s interest in physics and science.
Lifting the Veil: The Feminine Face of Science
Shepherd, Linda Jean PhD
A discussion of the study of science from the perspective of the Feminine.
The Reenchantment of the World
Our present scientific view of the world has dangerously skewed our perceptions in such a way that we forget our humanity and the magical aspects of existence. The book traces the development of this world view and suggests new directions for our thinking.
Coming to Our Senses: Body and Spirit in the Hidden History of the West
More in the vein of Berman’s book, The Reenchantment of the World.
Catching the Light: The Entwined History of Light and Mind
Science, New Physics
The Dancing Wu Li Masters: An Overview of the New Physics
Science, New Physics
An exciting view of new realms of possibility in physics.
The Quantum Society: Mind, Physics, and a new Social Vision
Zohr, Dana; Marshall, Ian
Science, new physics
The ideas of quantum physics expanded to apply to society in general.
Zen Physics: The Science of Death, the Logic of Reincarnation
Science, new physics death, reincarnation
The Tao of Physics
Science, New physics, new paradigm
The Holographic Universe
Science, New physics, new paradigm
The Unknown Spirit: The Unity of Matter in Space and Time
Science, New physics, spirit
Beyond the Quantum: The Secrets of the new Physics and Bridging the Chasm Between Science and Faith
Science, new physics, spirit
The Web of Life: A New Scientific Understanding of Living Systems
Science, biology, evolution
This book is a fine overview of the advances in thinking about biological systems over the last 15-20 years. It covers quantum physics and complexity theory as applied to biological systems.
Bridging Science and Spirit: Common Elements in David Bohm’s Physics, the Perennial Philosophy, and Seth
Science, spirit, new paradigm
Synchronicity: Science, Myth and the Trickster
Combs, Allan; Holland, Mark
Science, Synchronicity, mythology
A scientifically oriented exploration of synchronicity.
Synchronicity: The Bridge Between Matter and Mind
Peat, F. David
Science, Synchronicity, new physics, psychology
This book explores Jungs synchronicity concept from the perspective of physical science.
A Sound Education
Schafer, R. Murray
Sound awareness. See other titles by Schafer Classroom exercises for exploring sound.
The World is Sound- Nada Brahma: Music and the Landscape of Consciousness
The spiritual and psychological dimensions of music and sound.
The Tuning of the World
Schafer, R. Murray
Sound, music, soundscape design Arcana Editions; Rural rt 2; Indian River, Ontario K0L2B0 Available from this source only when last checked.
I strongly recommend all of Schafer’s books.
Voices of Tyranny Temples of Silence
Schafer, R. Murray
Soundscape Arcana Editions; Rural Rt 2; Indian River, Ontario K0L2B0 CANADA. Available from this source only when last checked.
I recommend all Schafer’s books on sound and music. When I last checked his books were self published, available from the above address only, but worth going to the trouble of getting.
Silicon Snake Oil: Second Thoughts on the Information Highway
Computers aren’t the unmitigated boon you might have thought.
The Future Does Not Compute: Transcending the Machine in our Midst
A more encompassing enquiry into the excesses of computers and technology than Clifford Stoll’s book, Silicon Snake Oil.
Writing from the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within
A book of essays and exercises on liberating the writer.
Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life
A funny and practical guide to writing by novelist Ann Lamott.
On Writing Well
A useful and entertaining book on nonfiction writing.
Writing the Natural Way
Creative writing techniques.
Write to the Point
A guide to clear nonfiction writing.
A Journal Workshop
Writing, journal, psychology
Using a journal for self-discovery. Journaling techniques.
The Mind Map Book
writing, organization, thought
Unique and useful technique for organizing ideas. Strongly recommended.
Life is a Miracle: An Essay Against Modern Superstition
Art From the notes: “Berry insists that religion and art are not subject to the reductionist and materialistic assumptions of modern science, and cannot be contained within its boundaries or explained by its explantions.”
Shadows in the Sun: Travels to Landscapes of Spirit and Desire
Essays about subjects ranging from the lives of Native hunters in Northern Canada to the psychedelic (and sometimes deadly) effects of toad toxin. Absorbing reading.
Ritalin Nation: Rapid-Fire Culture and The Transformation of Human Consciousness
DeGrandpre, Richard, Ph.D.
DeGrandpre argues convincingly that ATitleention Deficit Disorder, Hyperactivity, and related conditions usually are not biologically determined but are disorders related to our hurry-up culture. Whether you or your loved ones suffer from this “disorder” or not, this book is well worth your time.
The Disappearance of Childhood
For the institution of childhood to exist, children must be protected from certain ideas to which they are gradually initiated as they develop the ability to read, a skill which normally is acquired in its fullness over a relatively long period time. When exposed indiscriminately to media, particularly television, this process is short-ciruited and children are exposed at once to all the “adult secrets”, transforming them into “liTitlele adults” much as children were in medieval times before the invention of the printing press. This results in a society where not only are there no children, but no adults with the literary and thinking skills necessary to conduct a traditional democratic society.
Postman opens our eyes to the fact that childhood as we take it for granted did not always exist, and its future is not assured if society continues to evolve in its present direction.
Earth Odyssey: Around the World in search of our environmental future
Hertsgaard travels around the world interviewing inhabitants of areas most devastated by industrial capitalism and industrial socialism, assessing our chances of averting ecological disaster. An absorbing book, which made me realize just how good we have it in the United States in comparison to such places as Asia and the Soviet Union. But such realization is small consolation when considering the interrelatedness of living systems. . . and just how seriously the environment is already impaired even in this country.
The Geography of Childhood: Why Children need Wild Places
Nabhan, Gary Paul
The Reinvention of Work: A New Vision of Livelihood for our Time
Dissatisfied with you job? This book will provide insight about the spiritual meaning of work and why most Americans crave something different. It suggests that we need to learn to integrate our work into our lives, to do work which has a relationship to what we care for. And surely we need to kick our addictive consumption so we can spend less time working to support it.
War of the Worlds: Cyberspace and the High-Tech Assault on Reality
Our high-tech society increasingly encourages the confusion of reality with illusion. Some high-profile “cyberists” such as Kevin Kelly of Wired magazine glowingly predict our evolution into a “cyberspace” or “hive” community. Slouka questions whether such an evolution is desirable, and suggests that those who promote such views are selling us into digital servitude under the corporate pushers pandering to our technological addictions.
The Gift: Imagination and the Erotic Life of Property
Creativity, art, philosophy
If you are an artist who has struggled with the quandary inherent in selling the “gift” of your creative work in a commodity-based society, this book will surely clarify for you the source of the unease which you probably feel. Hyde brings in mythology, psychology, anthropology, literature and economics as he differentiates between articles with “exchange value” (commodities) and articles of “worth” (things of the heart). Advertising manipulates us by purposefully confusing the two, leading ultimately to much of the unrest which presently plagues our society.
Hillman, James; McLean, Margot
Animal meaning in dream reality.
Reproductions of McLean’s paintings mysteriously illuminate Hillman’s speculations on animal presence in our dreams. Hillman understands them as archetypal entities, with the same autonomy as the creatures of waking reality, not simply as metaphors for the dreamer’s inner conflicts.