Growth and development are core necessities of human life, without it, there will be no life. Personal growth, professional development, emotional development, spiritual awakening are all processes of achieving self-realisation, the purpose of our life. The benefits of personal growth are often success, more money, better physical health, better mental health, happiness, more skills, more knowledge, better status. On the other hand, spiritual growth enriches our awareness, our purpose. It leads one to wisdom, not only knowledge.
10 Books You Should Read To Attain Spiritual Awakening
1. Happiness Unlimited – Awakening With Brahma Kumari
If you have never read a spiritual book before, this is a good book to start dipping your toes in. It is a conversational (mostly questions and answers) book between Suresh Oberoi (the host) and Sister Shivani (Brahma Kumari) based on the international TV series, ‘Awakening With Brahma Kumari’. The topics surround happiness, choosing awareness, self-healing, peace and destiny. It is a great beginner’s guide to self-exploration. You can even catch the live show on many channels in the morning and the audio channels on their website.
If you have read the book or watched the show, you can try –
- Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert – a book based on the author’s life of her journey through Italy, India and Bali after a difficult divorce. It teaches one to balance pleasure and spirituality. You can watch the movie where Julia Roberts plays the lead.
- This Way Is Easier, Dad by Harimohan Paruvu – A conversational book between a perceptive daughter and her indulgent father. It teaches us to experience joy in the little things and how we miss most of them by worrying about the future.
2. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne
This book tells us the secret to living a happy life. It discusses the power of positivity and the law of attraction where the focus should stay on what you desire and not what you don’t want. You can read the other books in the series – The Power, The Magic and Hero. There are documentaries and movies on the book series too.
You may also like –
- The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho – The book is about a Spanish boy travelling through Morocco, Egypt in search of a treasure. On his way, he encounters many obstacles but overcomes them because the universe conspires to help you achieve your dream. You become self-empowered to follow your dreams and after achieving, there is no sense of regret or suffering, which gives you true happiness.
- The Power Of Your Subconscious Mind by Dr Joseph Murphy – He writes about the basic principle of really believing something and visualising it in your mind, you can overcome the subconscious barriers. He offers practical guidelines through real-life case studies and anecdotes.
- I Am The Mind: The Master Key To Achieve Anything You Want by Deep Trivedi – The author believes that every person has the power to achieve joy and success but many fail. He explains the basics of human nature and behaviour and how we grow mentally along with many concepts including laws of nature in an easy-to-understand language.
Gift Yourself ‘You’, Embark On A Journey Of Enlightenment is a collection of short poems and quotes by Dr Kalpesh Kotecha that will give you a daily dose of inspiration and guide you through tough times.
3. The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma
This is a self-help book that also brings a sense of spiritual awareness. It is a fictional story about a lawyer who is faced with a spiritual crisis and imbalance in his life. His emotional and spiritual journey to find the purpose of life and a timeless secret to lifelong happiness.
You can read more spiritual books by the author –
- Who Will Cry When You Die by Robin Sharma
- Discover Your Destiny With The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: The 7 Stages Of Self-Awakening by Robin Sharma
4. The Power Of Now: A Guide To Spiritual Enlightenment by Eckhart Tolle
Once you’ve had a feel of spiritual beginner books, this is a must-read. The author writes that the biggest enemy that stands in between us reaching enlightenment is our own mind. Our mind is so preoccupied with the worries of our future and so burdened by our past. The author urges us to start living in the present and the joys that come from living in the now. It explains how to consciously learn from the past instead of dwelling over them, teaches us how to go beyond the mind’s consciousness – the ego-based state of mind and to reach one’s true self. It guides us to the path of a more fulfilling experience. This is also a great self-help book for someone suffering from anxiety and depression.
Other spiritual books by this author that are a must-read –
- A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle – Oprah Winfrey-recommended, is great for someone facing inner and outer conflict. A guide to reducing one’s ego to feel fulfilled as the source of the conflict is our ego.
- Stillness Speaks by Eckhart Tolle – A meditative read preaching silence is golden. It writes about how each one of us needs to be silent enough to be able to hear the wisdom of our soul and how this would end our suffering.
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5. The Bhagavad Gita
The Gita is a 700-verse Hindu scripture, which is a part of the epic Mahabharata narrating a dialogue between Arjuna and Krishna. The Gita was written over 5000 years ago and is often misunderstood as a religious book. It definitely has a religious aspect of Hinduism but The Gita is a spiritual book guiding the reader on how to live. It has the eternal message from ancient India about spiritual wisdom. There are several abridged and unabridged versions of The Gita. Since the Sanskrit language is often difficult to understand, it is recommended to read one where there is an English explanation given for every verse.
There are several adaptations of The Gita, below are two that are highly recommended –
- The Gita For Children by Roopa Pai – Unlike the title, this book is apt for every age. The author has very beautifully and interestingly picked up the core learnings and meanings from The Gita and illustrated them in a story-like manner. If you have never read The Gita and are too terrified by the size of it, start with this one.
- My Gita by Devdutt Pattanaik – Acclaimed mythologist Devdutt Pattnaik writes about his unique approach towards The Gita, which he calls My Gita and urges you to find, Your Gita. This is a great read for someone looking for a different perspective as the author has great insights.
6. The Seven Spiritual Laws Of Success: A Practical Guide To The Fulfilment Of Your Dreams by Deepak Chopra
In this book, the author discusses the importance of success. He defines success as happiness and self-realisation of achieved goals. He doesn’t measure success in wealth. It is an exploration of spiritually nurturing oneself through gratitude, giving back, and the journey of life until you find your purpose. He lays down seven spiritual laws that include – the law of giving, pure potentiality, dharma, karma, the law of least effort, detachment, and intention and desire.
Similar books that you can read –
- Conversations With God by Neale Walsch – This book is very easy to follow and understand. The author believes that it is not the journey of discovering yourself but creating your new self. The author has a very different insight as to what God is and answers several common questions such as money, love, sex, relationships, the purpose of life, and how one can be fulfilled with theirs. There are nine books in this series. The first one is highly recommended.
- The Laws Of The Spirit World by Khorshed Bhavnagri – This is an advanced book and should be read once you want to go deeper into the spiritual world. The author wrote this book as an expression of grief after the death of her two sons and how she searched meaning in their deaths and was able to communicate with them through the laws of the spirit realm. The book has a take on suicide, marriage, sins, rebirth, horoscopes, prayers and much more.
“To a mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders.” – Lao Tzu
7. The Seat Of The Soul by Gary Zukav
The book talks about how ego and power can align us spiritually but we often get sidetracked. It also explains how external powers can cause conflict in our personal lives and in the world. We all are on a spiritual journey and once we align our thoughts, emotions and actions we are filled with purpose, meaning and enthusiasm.
If you liked this, you may like –
- Inner Engineering, A Yogi’s Guide To Joy by Sadhguru – In his book, Sadhguru talks about his own experiences, insights and teachings with the science of yoga and spirituality. If one aligns their mind, body and energies around and within, they can create a world of limitless possibilities and power.
- The Autobiography Of A Yogi by Paramhansa Yogananda – This book is about Sri Sri Paramhansa Yogananda who was an Indian monk, yogi and guru. He talks about his journey from childhood, to meeting spiritual guides from all over the world, to becoming a monk and teaching meditation. It is an inspiring lesson in spiritual entrepreneurship.
8. Siddhartha by Herman Hesse
For the spiritually inclined, this book is a must-read. It’s about a Nepalese traveller named Siddhartha who is on his journey to self-discovery during the times of Gautama Buddha. He makes several attempts to find spiritual enlightenment but he finds that spiritual fulfilment is much easier found than described by wise men. The author has brought his creativity out in re-telling the stories, but many instances in the story are based on real events during the time of Buddha.
Another Buddhism-Spiritual book you can read –
- Mindfulness, Bliss And Beyond by Ajahn Brahm – The author shares his knowledge and experience on ‘dhyana’ or ‘jhana’, which means training of the mind. This is an important part of Buddha’s meditation teaching. The author tackles real transformation theories in a light, humorous manner, which is inspiring and illuminating.
“When you complain, you make yourself a victim. Leave the situation. Change the situation or accept it. All else is madness.” – Eckhart Tolle
9. Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself by Michael Singer
The book explains that one’s mind runs oneself. It is based on an illusion, a dream and how you need to get out and become spiritually conscious. The book answers questions like – who are you? What would it be like to free yourself from limitations and boundaries? How to discover inner peace and serenity every day? The development of our consciousness can lead us to self-realisation.
Similar book –
- The Road Less Travelled by M. Scott Peck – Is one of the most popular books in the spiritual genre. The author talks about the discipline of spiritual evolution, which is a long and difficult journey. He talks about love, as a force of spiritual growth and lastly about grace. He provides a practical approach by weaving psychotherapy, science, and religion for personal growth and self-awareness. The author even discusses how avoiding problems often stunt our spiritual and mental growth.
10. The Art Of Happiness: A Handbook For Living by 14thDalai Lama And Howard C. Cutler
The Dalai Lama answers the deep questions about pain and suffering in the world, and why so many people are unhappy. He explains that the purpose of life is happiness despite outside circumstances. To achieve that kind of happiness, one needs discipline of mind and compassion. It doesn’t talk about any religious guidelines or spiritual laws; but only about the importance and attainability of happiness in our everyday life.
After reading this, you may want to read –
- Peace Is Every Step: The Path Of Mindfulness In Everyday Life by Thich Nhat Hanh – Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh teaches us to bring awareness of body and mind through conscious breathing. It is so easy to lose peace in our busy lives, but filled with anecdotes, this book guides us on how to experience deep feelings of joy with our next conscious breath and our next smile – which will bring the peace back.
- You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay – The author’s key message is that we all have the power and ability to heal ourselves if we are willing to do the groundwork or in this case mental work. She guides the reader in improving their life, changing their thinking and overcoming limitations. She has given several mental exercises that need to be consistently done to achieve results. After achieving, one has overcome the past, forgiven the hurt and is now self-aware.
Spirituality does not come from books or podcasts or money or knowledge but from within ourselves; from our thoughts, feelings and experiences. Meditation is often a good way to connect to those thoughts and feelings. Learning how to meditate is essential as it gives you focused access to your subconscious mind and you can reflect and change your behaviour, mindset and attitude towards life. Reading spiritual books will not make you spiritual but it will give you the knowledge on how to be. A person becomes wise when they start implementing that knowledge, taking responsibility for all their actions, and starts living in the present.