My 2019 Reading List

My 2019 Reading List

I’ve read innumerable books on business, marketing, sales, productivity, and leadership. Countless books on mindset, positivity, self-help, and personal growth. Bookshelves on health and fitness.

Few things I love more than reading.

Kid:Candy Store = Me:Library

But I seldom read these kinds of books anymore.

Instead I try and practice what I’ve learned from them – in business, in relationships, in strategies, in mindset, in the gym and in the kitchen.

Over the last decade I’ve found myself being increasingly drawn to philosophical / spiritual books.

Perhaps I’ve moved from books on “how” and “what” to do, to philosophies on “why” do it in the first place.

Books about people who asked “why” and then embodied their answers have a magnetic appeal to me.

In trying to dig deeper under various philosophies and studying people who lived their Truth, I’ve become enamored with the intersection of seemingly disparate subjects: Art and Science, Music and Math, Technology and Design, Drawing and Geometry, Left Brain and Right Brain.

To see the unification of polar opposites clarifies reality and points towards Truth. A Truth I’m constantly trying to know more deeply.

Here are some of the books I’ve recently read in my journey to better knowing this Truth.

Rating: You decide 🙂

Yourdrum is a book I wrote and yet re-read often to keep me on my path.

I think maybe it can help you find and stay on yours too.

Michael Singer

Rating: 9/10

I read all of Michael’s books in a span of a month.

  1. The Untethered Soul – His most well-known book is a great one to start with for unchaining yourself to worry, stress, and anxiety.
  2. The Surrender Experiment – I’d read this one next. It’s his autobiographical account. A testimony to his life’s philosophy and fascinating story that reads like a fictional rollercoaster.
  3. The Search for Truth – This is a book that helps bridge much of Eastern and Western spirituality.
  4. Three Essays on Universal Law – If you read #1 and #2 you may be catapulted to wanting to read #3 and #4 but I wouldn’t start with these.

The 49th Mystic

Rating: 9/10

The 49th Mystic is a fictional account of a girl who lives in two worlds in an epic journey to discover who she is.

I loved this book and the sequel, Rise of the Mystics.

For a combination of entertainment and life value, I haven’t found many books on this level. Highly recommend.

Finite and Infinite Games

Rating 8/10

Finite and Infinite Games would be a 10/10 but the prose is difficult. It’s a short book, but daunting.

This book helps give a glimpse of the invisible laws, concepts, and games that rule our lives.

If you can get through it, it’s hard to look at the world the same.

I own it so I can re-read it every year.

The Courage to Be Disliked

Rating: 7.25/10

The Courage to Be Disliked – I did not dislike this book. I got a lot out of it.

This is based on Adler’s psychology, the third of the great psychologist, and most unknown (Freud and Jung are the two most famous).

While I don’t agree with everything in this book, I found that it does help point to the often hidden root of problems and a path to happiness.

Rating: 8/10

Leonardo Da Vinci epitomizes the intersection of art and science and the power of mixing these two with insatiable curiosity.

In one second a child, another a scientist, another a genius painter. Lots of lessons from his life that point towards Truth.

Rating: 7.5/10

The Soul’s Code is an amazing book. It’s a 10/10 kind of book, but not the easiest to read.

I read this book and Da Vinci at the same time, and I think it had a synergistic effect.

Hillman calls it a “daimon.”
I call it “yourdrum.”

Da Vinci epitomizes it by listening to it, following it, and not letting anyone or anything interfere, tamper, or hinder it.

Rating: 8/10

When Breath Becomes Air was a page-turner for me. I loved this book.

Though it’s hard for me to pinpoint why.
Perhaps because it brought about more questions than answers.

Perhaps it was because Paul married the arts and sciences in an extraordinary way which culminated in this book.

Perhaps it was because Paul masterfully and gracefully explored dealth to learn to live as much as he reflected on life to learn to die.

Whatever the reason, if you’re looking for a book to gain perspective on living and dying Paul wrote quite a masterpiece.

Rating: 9.5/10

Awareness is a slap in the face to wake up. Instead of trying to describe it, I’ll just leave you with a couple quotes.

“What you are aware of you are in control of; what you are not aware of is in control of you.”

“When you are ready to lose your life, you live it. But if you’re protecting your life, you’re dead.”

I will be reading more of Anthony’s work.

Rating: 8/10

On Writing: A memoir of the Craft is part memoir, part master class, and I think this is a “must-read” for anyone who writes (which is everyone of course), but also for anyone wanting to create anything.

“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid or making friends. Writing is magic, as much as the water of life as any other creative art. The water is free. So drink.”

Rating: 7.5/10

Brief Answers to the Big Questions and A Brief History of Time is addresses numerous questions such as:

  • “How did it all begin?”
  • “How do we shape the future?”
  • “Is there a God?”
  • “Is time travel possible?”

While most of the theoretical physics of black holes and string theory is over my head, what lured me in was how big Hawking thinks and how he analyzes hypotheses.
I think reading these books improved my thinking.

But in addition to general relativity, the big bang, galaxy formation, and gravitational waves, Hawking touches on more imminent issues facing the future of humanity like whether AI will outsmart us and why it’s a good thing that Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are working to colonise space to save us from ourselves.
Probably not for everyone, but I thoroughly enjoyed these.

Jed McKenna - The Enlightenment Trilogy

Rating: 10/10

Jed McKenna: The Enlightenment Trilogy

“Spiritual Enlightenment: the Damnedest Thing” (Book 1)

“Spiritually Incorrect Enlightenment” (Book 2)

“Spiritual Warfare” (Book 3)

Rating: 8.5/10

“1984” by George Orwell

Reading this after Jed’s books hits home hard.

  • Winston ~ McKenna
  • Big Brother ~ Maya
  • Ministry of Love ~ Spiritual Autolysis
  • Diary ~ 1st Step
  • Brotherhood ~ Turn against yourself

The Lessons of History

Rating: 8.5/10

“The Lessons of History” by Will Durant

This is 100 centuries in 100 pages.

Pound for pound (page for page), it’s one of the most knowledge dense books I’ve ever read.

The book covers everything from biology to religion to money to war to government. The only reason it doesn’t get a higher rating is that the writing style is dense (as would be expected when fitting 100 centuries into 100 pages).

Willpower Doesn't Work

Rating: 7.5/10

“Willpower Doesn’t Work” by Benjamin Hardy

This book is about how to change your life. Specifically, it’s about changing your environment: where you work, who is in your life, what you listen to, what you read, and what external pressures you create. It’s about changing the outside to force an internal change.

Rating: 8/10

“Becoming Supernatural” by Dr. Joe Dispenza

This book is about how to change your life by changing your energy. I enjoyed it, but like many of the other “self-help” books on changing your life – it can be summed up in a tweet – which isn’t a bad thing 🙂

zen and the art of mixing

Rating: 6.5/10

“Zen and the Art of Mixing” by Mixerman

I like this book for insights into the bridging of the analog and digital world of mixing.

The Song Machine

Rating: 6.5/10

“The Song Machine” by John Seabrook

A behind the scene look at how many of the biggest songs and artists are created.