5 Books to Spark Your Spiritual Enlightenment

Get ready for some soul-searching.


A man reading

A retreat for your body, mind and spirit (Unsplash)

These books will set off some soul-searching - no two ways about it. Learn to live with a greater sense of community and mind-body integration from these favorite works that are like a retreat for your body, mind and spirit. Some of these books lean toward religion while others are more pantheistic. All of them will awaken your spirit and give you a new way to look at the world around you.

1. The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have

By Mark Nepo
The Book of Awakening is filled with poignant insights from Mark Nepo, a philosopher, poet and cancer survivor. His mini wisdom lessons show the value of appreciating every precious detail of life. Keep this book within arm’s reach to get your daily dose of inspiration.

“The further I wake into this life, the more I realize that God is everywhere and the extraordinary is waiting quietly beneath the skin of all that is ordinary. Light is in both the broken bottle and the diamond, and music is in both the flowing violin and the water dripping from the drainage pipe. Yes, God is under the porch as well as on top of the mountain, and joy is in both the front row and the bleachers, if we are willing to be where we are.” —Mark Nepo

2. The Road Less Traveled: Timeless Edition: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth

By M. Scott Peck, M.D.
Our spiritual evolution is a long and difficult life journey of self-awareness and personal growth, according to this classic by the late M. Scott Peck, M.D. The Road Less Traveled weaves together psychotherapy, religion and science to provide a practical approach for living with a higher understanding of ourselves and the role love plays in our lives.

“To proceed very far through the desert, you must be willing to meet existential suffering and work it through. In order to do this, the attitude toward pain has to change. This happens when we accept the fact that everything that happens to us has been designed for our spiritual growth.”—M. Scott Peck, M.D.

3. The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success: A Practical Guide to the Fulfillment of Your Dreams

By Deepak Chopra
The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success is an exploration of how to spiritually nurture yourself and your family through giving back, expressing gratitude, enjoying the journey of life and realizing you are here for a reason.

“If you want to transform your karma to a more desirable experience, look for the seed of opportunity within every adversity, and tie that seed of opportunity to your dharma, or purpose in life. This will enable you to convert the adversity into a benefit, and transform the karma into a new expression.”—Deepak Chopra

4. Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life

By Thich Nhat Hanh
With the whirlwind pace of life, it’s easy to lose touch with the peace that surrounds us at every moment. In Peace Is Every Step, world-renowned Zen master and spiritual leader Thich Nhat Hanh explains how we can experience deep feelings of joy and completeness with our next aware breath and our next smile. Filled with anecdotes, the book teaches the reader to bring awareness to the body, mind and whole life through conscious breathing.

"If we are not fully ourselves, truly in the present moment, we miss everything.”—Thich Nhat Hanh

5. The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Handbook for Living

By Dalai Lama
Psychiatrist Howard Cutler sits down with the Dalai Lama to ask him life’s deepest questions in The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living. Learn the answers to timeless questions such as: Why are so many people unhappy? and Why is there so much suffering in the world? The Art of Happiness shows us that having a philosophy of compassion and a disciplined mind can lead us to happiness, and that a happy life requires study and practice.

“Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.”―Dalai Lama


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This article by Sandra Bienkowski was originally published on Live Happy, and appears here with permission. Click here to read the full spiritual enlightenment book list.