Below are a collection of formative books, articles, and documentaries that have assisted me on my journey and may also inspire yours:
Quiet (book) by Susan Cain – A beautifully validating review of the genetic qualities of introversion and high sensitivity, and tribute to the gifts inherent in those qualities if we welcome and develop them. She also has a wonderful TED talk.
Why Your Critics Aren’t The Ones Who Count (TED talk) by Brene Brown – I’m a huge fan of Brene Brown, and this is perhaps my favorite talk of hers because it addresses what it takes to be a creative and to dare greatly, and how to identify our tribe. And this video done to one of her talks on empathy is the best description I’ve come across of the difference between empathy and sympathy. Enjoy!
Wild Feminine (book) by Tami Kent – A deeply honoring overview of how we as woman within our current society learn to distance ourselves from the wisdom in our bodies and transformative practices for reconnecting
Half the Sky (documentary) – A tremendously informative and inspiring testament to the challenges faced by women in developing countries across the world and the grass-roots efforts they have started to break the cycle for future generations of girls.
The Power of Myth (documentary) with Joseph Campbell and Bill Moyers – An astonishing journey through themes common to myths across the ages from all parts of the world, and a thrilling call to begin to develop our own individual myths to orient ourselves within the tremendously fluid world we now live in. Warning – graffics are super cheesy!
The Economics of Happiness (documentary) through the International Society of Ecology and Culture – Ecopsychologist Helena Norberg-Hodges breaks down how corporate globalization dismantles indigenous cultures across the world within a single generation and how resource localization that bring benefits of technology while sustaining the health of body, mind, and spirit we long for.
The Hard Questions for an Authentic Life (book) by Susan Pivers is a beautifully written practical manual of deep questions to ask oneself about every major area of life in order to understand what we value most and how to create a life in alignment with our deepest priorities.
The Biology of Desire (book) by Marc Lewis is the first book to combine both anecdotes and science to understand addiction. A former addict turned neuroscientist, Lewis argues convincingly that instead of being a disease, addiction is the product of the brain doing what it is designed to do, and that the very emotionally charged focus and repetition that created the addiction can lead us through it to a more vibrantly integrated life.
The Presence Process (book) by Michael Brown outlines a self-facilitated 10-week process to fully feeling and integrating recurring emotional states. Having spent years exploring medical and spiritual cures for a chronically painful neurological disorder, Brown was able to find relief through the techniques he shares in this book. Much of the philosophy is reminiscent of Eckhart Tolle, but provides a clear process for how to access all the benefits of deeper presence.
I Will Not Die an Unlived Life (book) by Dawna Markova is a beautiful companion for anyone feeling drawn to make a life change and needing support. The intimately inspiring stories and deeply resonant questions outline the path, validate each pitfall, and offer encouragement for staying authentic and intuitive.
Women Food and God (book) by Geneen Roth is a profound and transformational journey through the various expressions of disordered eating, its causes, and how to recover. It offers moving and validating stories and key insights for practicing mindfulness and self-love.
My Name is Chellis and I’m in Recovery from Western Civilization (book) by Chellis Glendinning is the most moving and informative book I’ve read on ecopsychology, outlining how the human relationship with nature has change during our evolution and how the resulting environmental, social, spiritual, and health crises we face can all be healed by reconnecting with the natural world and reclaiming our essential nature.
The Spiritual Dimension of the Enneagram (book) by Sandra Maitri takes this popular personality typing tool and uses it to describe how different personalities developed from the core trauma of separation from the divine and the unique paths available to each to reconnect with source and experience their own unique gifts.
Attached (book) by Levine and Heller has been instrumental in my own recovery by applying research on infant attachment to the way adults form intimate relationships. By understanding ourselves as primarily anxious, secure, or avoidant, and learning to identify these qualities in others, we can choose the relationships that enable us to feel more secure and deeply loved.
The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know is Possible (book) by Charles Eisenstein is written like a set of essays dissecting elements of our modern culture and how they contribute to our sense of isolation and dissatisfaction, and motivate behaviors that are destructive to ourselves, others, and our world. Incredibly original, insightful, and rich, Eisenstein defines our current state of affairs and articulates how we can evolve through it to embody the intuitive knowing we all have in our hearts.
The Sound of a Silver Horn (book) by Kathleen Noble the hero’s journey mythology introduced by Joseph Campbell and outlines how it appears in the modern woman’s life. Offering much-needed support for woman lacking female role models, Noble articulates the unique challenges we face is answering the heroes call and supports our transformation through identifying our allies and integrating our experiences.
Through a Glass Darkly (article) interview with Miriam Greenspan in Sun Magazine is a short-read packed with tons of insight about the link between grief, depression, spirituality, and the environment. It is our ability to fully feel and move through dark emotions, not bypass them, that enables us to truly progress spiritually and be present with ourselves and other in honor of our “intervulerability”.
“My story isn’t sweet and harmonious like invented stories. It tastes of folly and bewilderment, of madness and dreams, like the life of all people who no longer want to lie to themselves” – Herman Hesse