General Reading List

EDIT: This list needs a massive revamp as it no longer really represents what I’m doing. The whole system of lists actually needs to be changed, and that may not happen for a while. I ask everyone’s patience until I can put up new reading lists with lots more stuff. The current qigong one is ok though (20/04/13), just add Glenn’s books to the top of it as he is still the best read on the interface of qigong and Kundalini.

Everything below is still recommended reading needless to say, but at some point it needs to be broken up into more lists, especially the hypnosis and psychology stuff, lots more stuff needs to be added, and the actual architecture of how it all works together needs to be clearer.

Energy and Enlightenment

Morris, Glenn — Path Notes of an American Ninja Master
(Google Books has much of it for free)
Morris, Glenn — Shadow Strategies of an American Ninja Master
Morris, Glenn — Martial Arts Madness

Glenn was a paradigm actualised personality — psychologist, martial artist, poet, actor, college professor, shaman, kundalini-enlightened meditator, and one-man conclusive refutation of the idea that ‘those who can’t, teach’. Also a very very fun person, and one who could really write. The tales of his, let’s say, ‘powers’, are numerous and they are not kidding. Everything I do started with him and he’s still a great read, plus still the source of many of my ideas. Glenn really understood the interface of the mystical with the psychological and his stuff has worked for hundreds, in his day, and since.

His posthumous e-book is now thankfully available as a physical book:

Morris, Glenn — Quantum Crawfish Bisque for the Clueless Soul

Subtitled “How Choice Works to Create Success or Despair”, in this one Glenn took the unexpected step of making available a lifetime’s work in rhetoric and psychology to anyone who wants to live well. So much more useful than new age pontification, stuffed with quizzes to make you think, based on his personal research.

Psychological

Havens, Ronald A. & Catherine Walters — Hypnotherapy Scripts
Haley, Jay — Uncommon Therapy
Lankton, Stephen & Carol Hicks Lankton — The Answer Within

Hypnotherapy now tops my list of psychological modalities, because it’s the most useful technique overall in my opinion. It segues very easily to spiritual areas. These books are in the Ericksonian line of descent, a powerful self-change approach. What I’m trying to give the experimenter here is a way of getting effects solo, but with no talking down — these are books for the professional, but you’ll be able to crib from them as they’re easy to understand, and will be better informed than with the fluffies. Most useful probably when read in the order above. Havens and Walters provide a great collection of ready-made scripts with details on how to write original ones too. (Bypass the over-standardised approaches you find on most hypno CDs.) Haley surveys the Ericksonian casebook and shows some of the most important principles of this therapeutic approach. The Lanktons put it into action, providing the best and deepest comprehension of the Milton Erickson paradigms. Brilliant, elegant methods and extremely deep and beautiful insights on human nature. Worth reading just to understand how well people can be understood.

There’s a CD to partner the Havens & Walters book; recommended for those who want to hear their cadences.

Butler, Pamela — Talking to Yourself

The best one-volume intro to changing your belief system by cognitive means. Still a useful approach. Albert Ellis is a good alternative too. Unfortunately this approach has no method for working and flowing with the emotions or balancing them (indeed, Ellis simply considers them ‘the problem’ which is quite common in some Western approaches), and you will need one. That’s the reason I no longer place this system as highly. Glenn’s four elements + void system + Secret Smile system for the emotions is brilliant; the insights are age-old. Emotional flexibility is so important. But so is belief system flexibility.

Earley, Jay — Self-Therapy
Schwartz, Richard — Internal Family Systems Therapy
Firman, John & Ann Gila — Psychosynthesis

Other systems which avoid the traps of psychodynamics. Internal Family Systems and Psychosynthesis share much in common, especially the important connections to personal spirituality (“I” and Self) combined with a multiple subconscious structure with many subpersonalities. Can combine with hypnosis.

Bernstein, Douglas A., Thomas D. Borkovec & Holly Hazlett-Stevens — New Directions in Progressive Relaxation Training

If you work by yourself you probably need to know how to practice progressive relaxation too. There are decent guides all over the internet, or take this book for a deeper practitioner-based look.

Background

Becker, Robert — The Body Electric

Genuine scientific evidence of our bodily electro-magnetic field and its importance to health. Must be read by those seeking a genuine, non-flaky basis for an energy approach in experimental science.

Couliano, Ioan — Out of this World

The best scholarly survey of out-of-body/astral projection phenomena in world spiritual culture and history.

Harpur, Patrick — Daimonic Reality
Harpur, Patrick — The Philosophers’ Secret Fire

Genius interpreter of the Fortean and Jungian, provides important western-based background. Not training-based but brilliant writing about the nature of the (other)world.

Walker, Barbara, ed. — Out of the Ordinary

What if learned folklorists took parapsychology seriously? Contains the famous Beings Without Bodies paper of David J. Hufford.


4 responses to “General Reading List

  • Bob

    I really liked your comments in the thread on Eisenstein’s The Ascent of Humanity. At the end of your amazon review of the Henderson book (I’m considering reading that one on the strength of your recommendation), you mentioned that at your website you write on the history and culture of SBNR. I am not so far locating recommended reading in this area easily here. Perhaps I’m not looking in the correct places or understanding what you mean by this topic. I am new to SBNR and would appreciate a recommendation or two on beginner level, broad scope works on the history and culture of this phenomenon.
    Thanks, Bob

    • Jason Wingate

      You’re right, that stuff isn’t on this list.

      Click the link for “Series: ‘Spiritual but not Religious in 2012′” (either at the top of the page or on the right panel). The posts for that series will come up in reverse order. The final post, which comes up first, has a reading list.

      The first book and free video lecture on the list will fill your requirements to some degree as will the one about “understanding unchurched America”, should you be interested in America. A couple of the others might be good too if you look them over.

      There’s a more detailed story to be told from the cultural point of view but I now haven’t got the time to tell it… I’m going to move away from the historical cultural focus. May have to edit the Henderson review accordingly!

  • Bob

    Thanks. Just curious–why are you choosing to move away from the historical cultural focus? And what are you moving towards?

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