Book Reviews: 4 Inspirational Books for Spiritual Growth
Every now and then I come across books that truly inspire me. That’s what I love about people who share their stories. They help others to find hope again or pursue their dreams or simply get some inspiration to face everyday life.
I’m always reading books. I read a wide range of books from romantic novels, psychological thrillers, crime books, self-help books, and more. I find great inspiration in real-life stories and I’m reminded, over and over again, that each and every one of us faces huge obstacles that we somehow overcome.
Authors who share their life experiences with the world are empowering others to find solutions to their own personal challenges. What these authors may not realize is that they, themselves, are helping others to heal and transform.
By sharing my three inspirational books (and I have many more to share but that’s for another time) with you, I hope you’ll find hope and a reason to grow.
Read on and find out what’s on my list of top picks in this article. And, do yourself a huge favor. Get them to read on the weekend!
My Top Picks
Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor E. Frankel
The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself – Michael Alan Singer
The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment – Eckhart Tolle
Shattering the Illusions: A Shamanic Path to Self-Healing - Joy R. Austen
1. Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor E. Frankel
I resisted reading this book for a very long time. I don’t know why but I thought it would be too “intelligent” for me. Somehow, I found the prospect of searching for meaning quite daunting and beyond my realms of capabilities! Which tells you how much I valued my own level of intelligence at one time.
While I had heard of this book before, when my spiritual teacher first mentioned it five years ago and highly recommended it, I resisted it (for the reasons I described above). Maybe I wasn’t ready to hear the message Viktor Frankl had to share.
It was only two years ago, that I decided to download this book onto my Kindle. It’s not a long book to read and I was so captivated that I finished it in one night. Wow! Not only does this book give me hope but it simplifies the way I look at life and what searching for meaning really entails.
It’s not about becoming a high-flying career woman (never has been, never will be!), or searching for happiness from someone else. But, in Viktor Frankel’s words, "it’s about doing something significant when you work, loving others as in caring for others, and having courage during difficult times."
I think the most significant, overarching message that came through this inspiring story was we can’t control what’s happening around us BUT we can choose how to respond to the situation. In other words, you can control what you feel and can do about the situation. That’s freedom, my friend.
Viktor Frankl’s portrayal of his and other prisoners’ life in concentration camps during WW2 can be harrowing for many. Yet, he managed to shine the light no matter how hard and horrific the situation was. His book is truly a tribute to HOPE and I wish I had the courage to read this book sooner.
If you’re looking for hope, for some meaning in your life, and lessons on how to respond to situations that can seem overwhelming or depressing, then you have to read this book. I promise you; you won’t only read it once. It’s a keeper and one you’ll read, over and over again.
2. The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself – Michael Alan Singer
I must admit, I fell in love with the cover of this book. It draws you into opening the book and well, the rest is history! For the past three years, I head down to our local book store at the shopping mall nearby and buy a book (or two) to add to my library of “self-help” books.
I like to be able to offer my clients inspirational and motivational books to read so this library of mine has a purpose beyond fulfilling my intense need to read, read, read.
Michael Alan Singer’s “The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself”, truly is an inspiration. The author shares his own story about discovering his own inner self as he ventured on an inward journey. His driving need to find inner peace and serenity, his search for a harmonious life are described in beautiful, heartfelt, and genuine words.
I could relate to all his own questions about finding ways to break the limiting habits we impose on ourselves. I related deeply to his quest for increasing his levels of consciousness. And, I was inspired by his search for answers through meditation and mindfulness.
I have been meditating for many years so I know how powerful this tool is for finding clarity, harmony, and mindfulness. This book simply enforces this further for me and encourages me to never give up on on this practice.
This book showed me how our thoughts and emotions can cause such disruptions to our inner energy and by integrating the act of meditation into your daily life, you can learn to manage your mind more efficiently.
If you’re serious about setting yourself free from the limitations of your own thoughts, emotions, and habits, then I recommend reading this book. It may not be the ultimate book in meditation (there are so many available and to pick only one would be limiting in itself), it will, however, inspire you to be more mindful.
This is definitely a book to read and keep on your bookshelf if you decide to take on an inward journey of your own.
3. The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment – Eckhart Tolle
When I first started learning about shamanism, one of the principles talked about the “power of now”. That statement struck a chord within me and it seemed so liberating. Yet, I wasn’t sure how to implement it in my own life. When the concept came through in my life coaching training, I was, once more, inspired to tap into that power.
It was my coaching mentor who recommended Eckhart Tolle’s book, “The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment” to me. So, in 2016 I downloaded the book on my Kindle. Now, I have a confession to make. It was hard work wading through this book! No offense, Mr. Tolle, but it wasn’t easy grasping the concept your way.
But, and this is a BIG but! I pushed on through the book and slowly, I got the message. What’s more, I chose to read it the second time around, and this time I made notes as I read the book. This helped me to slow down and really take in what the author was sharing.
This book is phenomenal. It teaches you the power of living in the moment. In the act of doing this, you’re transforming your levels of consciousness all the time. The book shows you how to put Eckhart Tolle’s teachings into practice in your daily life.
You undertake a journey of inner awareness and you learn to let go of any resistance, both mentally and emotionally, to the presence of “now”. While I can’t say I’m anywhere near to being enlightened (and I don’t believe it’s going to happen in this lifetime), I would like to believe I’m more enlightened than I was before reading this book.
So, get this book. Yes, you’ll likely put it down more than once and give up finishing the book but I’m telling you it’s worth pushing on through it. Of course, I’ve spoken to people who have read this book and they couldn’t put it down so please, don’t be limited by what I have to say.
This book is a definite keeper and it’s inspirational. It’s a book you will read more than once. It’s immensely powerful and if you can attain at least some of the teachings from this book, you too will discover the liberating feeling of the power of now.
4. Shattering the Illusions: A Shamanic Path to Self-Healing
If you want to discover how to use shamanic principles as a tool to heal yourself, read this book. The author shares her own personal stories and demonstrates how she transformed them using shamanic healing methods used by shamans around the world.
Her stories will resonate with most of us who have experienced abusive relationships, loss, disability, and generational patterns. She also talks about the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on everyone, including herself. She touches on money beliefs, choosing between a job or a vocation, and letting go of emotions such as shame and guilt.
Joy R. Austen’s raw honesty and desire to heal herself and others, is empowering and thought-provoking. Her passion to share her life experiences as a way of teaching others to grow and improve themselves is what makes this book inspiring and full of hope.
As I write these book reviews today, most of the world is facing a catastrophic second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. I’ve spoken to friends in other parts of the world and they’re frightened, overwhelmed, and feeling hopeless. I feel the same way and if it wasn’t for these books and their incredible stories and teachings, I think I would be very lost right now.
If you’re feeling sad, down, and wondering if there’s ever going to be a light at the end of this COVID-19 tunnel, I urge you to read these books. There’s always hope, there’s always mindfulness and there’s always enlightenment.
Stories such as these are meant to inspire us and give us hope. They’re meant to give us the tools we need to cope when life seems too unbearable. These books do exactly that so, go on, do yourself a favor and read these books now (there’s nothing like the power of now!).
This post was originally published on January 15th, 2021, and updated on April 1st, 2022.
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