Books uplift me. They heal me. They remind me of who I am.
They teach me how to live a connected, contented, soulful life. Books are the food that nourish my soul.
Stories will do that. Honest, raw, insightful stories of real lives that have transformed. All of my favourite books, every single one, tells the story of the author. I have many wise, generous authors to thank for my spiritual awakening, my journey inward, the expansion of my consciousness.
Out of all the books I’ve read, the following have changed me in ways I never imagined…
A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle
“To end the misery that has afflicted the human condition for thousands of years, you have to start with yourself and take responsibility for your inner state at any given moment… Your sense of self, of who you are, undergoes a shift: Before you were the thoughts, emotions, and reactions; now you are the awareness, the conscious Presence that witness those states.”
It was the first truly spiritual book I ever devoured, and still remains my absolute favourite. Eckhart writes about the ego, peels back the layers of confusion and fear, and shows the reader who they really are. It’s such a powerful insight into our true nature and how to easily achieve such great depths of happiness.
You Can Heal Your Life by Louise L. Hay
“In the infinity of life where I am, all is perfect, whole, and complete. I recognize my body as a good friend. Each cell in my body has Divine Intelligence. I listen to what it tells me, and know that its advice is valid. I am always safe, and Divinely protected and guided. I choose to be healthy and free. All is well in my world.”
This book is a timeless reminder of the power of the human mind. When I first read it I couldn’t stop. I was about 25 years old and so hungry for healing. When my in-laws visited from New Zealand I snuck off after lunch pretending I had a sore tummy so I could finish the book. I cried so much from all the knowing. It felt like Louise had wrapped me up in a warm blanket and soothed every little ache – physical and emotional. I still refer to this book to help me with whatever health problem that may arise. Recently I looked up “thyroid” and I now have a beautiful affirmation by my computer to read every day.
The Secret of Life Wellness by Inna Segal
“More of us than ever before are ready for an epic shift of consciousness, both individually and as a people. We are ready to find new ways of living, which work in practical, loving, peaceful, united, and healthy ways. We are ready to have more soulful, spiritual, conscious solutions to both personal and global challenges. We need a new way!”
This epic book of wellness has been a constant presence on my bedside table for many years. Slowly I worked my way through it, learning about intuition, our shadow side, inner child, archetypes, soul mates, past lives, colour healing, harmony at home and abundance. Inna is an Australian who shares her own incredible stories as well as those of the clients she’s worked with in the past. I learned so much and every time I dip back in I learn so much more.
Journey of Souls by Michael Newton
“The most significant benefit which comes from knowing we have a home of everlasting love waiting for us, is being receptive to the higher spiritual power within our minds. The awareness that we do belong somewhere is reassuring and offers us peace… to unify ourselves with a universal mind.”
An old friend once suggested I grab this book. She said I was ready. I had no idea what the book was about or what I’d done to be “ready”, but I trusted her so I bought it. Wow.
This book changed everything. Absolutely everything. I already knew that we incarnated as humans many, many times to grow as souls, but that was the extent of my understanding. Michael taught me about our bright and beautiful spiritual home, a place we all go to when we die. Through this book (and his next must-read Destiny of Souls) I learned about where our souls come from, the roles of our various soulmates, how and why we choose each life, the role free will plays in our lives, how we take time to learn from each life once it’s over, the function of our spirit guides, how evolution and creation work together to create each planet and galaxy, how souls advance and take on unique characteristics, interests and talents (not always separate to those in our human lives), and so much more. So. Much. More.
The Complete Buddhism for Mothers by Sarah Napthali
“Life will always present irritations and suffering. Only with a patient mind, that accepts whatever occurs, can we experience lasting happiness. As long as our happiness is conditional on external circumstances we won’t know peace. With spiritual progress we become more patient and accepting of all circumstances.”
Woven through this book of immense practical wisdom is a calm and loving spirit that helped me when I was a new mama struggling with depression and anxiety disorders. I remember one day hanging up the laundry and simply being mindful that I was hanging up the laundry. I felt so calm and accepting. And then I washed the dishes and felt the same. Mindfulness was so new to me five years ago, and it changed my life. Sarah planted so many seeds of contented happiness in my otherwise unhappy life. I am so grateful for this book for carrying me through the hard times.
What I Know For Sure by Oprah Winfrey
“When I think of authentic power, I think of the power that occurs when purpose aligns with personality to serve the greater good. For me, the only real power is the kind that comes from the core of who you are and reflects all that you were meant to be. When you see this kind of power shining through someone in all its truth and certainty, it’s irresistible, inspiring, elevating.”
This is a collection of Oprah’s monthly columns over the years from her magazine. Each little chapter is so vibrantly positive, it brings the biggest smile to my face. It’s a warm insight into Oprah’s everyday spirituality. It’s one of my favourite books because it shows what living a contented life is all about: finding peace within and being kind to others. I love her stories and the way she tells them. Just gorgeous.
Spirit Junkie by Gabrielle Bernstein
“Each day spent in prayer and meditation deepened my relationship with my spirit. This relationship was fulfilling, nurturing, inspiring, loving, honest, and faithful… As soon as I centered into my meditation I’d feel as though I were wrapped in a warm blanket. I felt the presence of spirit through my thoughts, experiences, and even physical senses.”
Gabrielle really woke me up with this book. In so many ways I was in denial, or asleep, or just not thinking straight. Gabby is a straight-shooting spiritual goddess who has helped me enormously both with her books, live shows and online videos. She gets totally honest and vulnerable in this book with her own story of drug addiction and self loathing and how she found peace.
The Miracles of Archangel Gabriel by Doreen Virtue
“Because Gabriel is unlimited, the angel can assist everyone who asks for help in delivering messages. Just think or say, “Please guide my words and actions so that they bring blessings to everyone involved,” and Gabriel will be there to help.”
A few years ago I had a strange but wonderful dream. It was strange because it was so clear, like it actually happened. In the morning I was explaining it to my husband…. “I was at the markets with you and I found a stall where Gabrielle (the singer from the 90s) was singing and selling her latest album. There was a competition going, so I bought an album and waited. And I won a pair of large, purple angel’s wings.” That’s when it hit me. “Oh my God! I dreamt that Archangel Gabriel gave me wings!!!” I started crying as the enormity and beauty of the moment took over.
A few days later I was at a bookshop and this book jumped out at me. Without reading anything other than the title, I bought it. I mean, timing. Once home, I sat down with a cup of tea and began reading. I was shocked to the core to discover Archangel Gabriel looks after mothers and writers. As in, me.
Doreen tells so many incredible stories in this book about modern, real, brilliant miracles of Archangel Gabriel. She explains the history of the angel and many ways to pray. A must have for mamas who are also writers!
The Desire Map by Danielle LaPorte
“Desire is the foundation of our will to live. When you cease to desire, you cease to evolve. Your pursuit of the things you want can shift from feverish and anxiety-driven to trusting and fluid. But even with a more liberated consciousness, desire remains the mesh underlying our material existence and our spiritual growth.”
This woman is absolutely my favourite writer of all time. The way she strings sultry, unexpected, golden, truthful, brilliant words together is just magic. She’s whip-smart, soulfully passionate, dedicated to serving, and freaking funny. This book is the reason I set daily intentions, especially when the day feels rough. I look up, I choose how I want to feel, and my day (more or less) heads that way. She lit a fierce fire in my belly when I read this book (while you’re at it, you really must grab The Fire Starter Sessions too) and whenever my soul feels stuck, I open this up and take what I need.
Light is the New Black by Rebecca Campbell
“The soul speaks in feelings, in longings, in yearnings, in deep knowing, in vibration, in signs, in nature, in people. It centers itself in the heart, and carries within it a blueprint for your life. You can’t hear the calling of your soul if you don’t create space in your day to listen to it.”
This book is for the lightworkers. It’s for women who know their purpose and are looking for new ways of living a blissfully soulful life and cracking through resistance to live on purpose. It’s also for women who don’t know their purpose but want to find out more about ways to shine their light brighter and find what spirituality means to them. If you’re curious about spirituality but you don’t know where to start, read this book and Journey of Souls (mentioned above).
Books will change your life if you let them. They’ll make you a better person if you’re open. They’ll inspire you to write better than ever too.
Read whatever you feel most excited about, and open your heart to growth and change with each page. And never, ever feel obliged to finish a book if you’re not into it. Trust yourself, your soul knows just what you need.
I currently have Revolution by Russel Brand in my handbag, Opening to Channel by my bed and Women Who Run With the Wolves in my living room.
What are you reading, sweet peeps? What soul-quenching books have you devoured lately?