Books I Have Read and Found Useful (in no particular order)
Soulcraft by Bill Plotkin, New World Library (2003)– This is a guide book to those “dark nights of the soul” when we encounter a period of growth and are challenged to become whole and connect more deeply with our soul
Nature and the Human Soul by Bill Plotkin, New World Library (2007)– This book is essential as a guide to our development across the lifetime. A lovely vision of what it could be and what we can strive for in ourselves, our children, our elders and our communities.
Entering the Healing Ground by Francis Weller, Wisdom Bridge Press (2011) – A re-envisioning of what moving through grief can be. Rather than isolated private grief, he offers a poetic guide for bringing our grief back into community and ritualfor the sake of deep healing of our own soul as well as the soul of the world.
Wild Mind by Bill Plotkin (2013) – Finally Plotkin has written down in beautiful, rich and organized detail his map of the human psyche. In this book you will find a simple yet deeply rich and complex set of practices for engaging in the process of moving from our dominant culture’s fragmented adolescent conception of adulthood into a deeper and more whole embodied expression of mature adult presence.
River Flow by David Whyte, Many Rivers Press (2007, 2012) Many of the poems in this volume were like calls to encounter. David Whyte has a powerful way of asking questions of the soul with poetic urgency that is difficult to ignore. And of course, he travels in the depths and speaks eloquently of the gifts and challenges to be found in that journey.
A Little Book on the Human Shadow by Robert Bly (1988) – A great introduction to what the Shadow is, how it develops, and why we might want to take a peek into our own.
Meeting the Shadow, The Hidden Power of the Dark Side of Human Nature ed. Connie Zweig and Jeremiah Abrams (1991) – Essays by many authors from C.G. Jung, Robert Bly, James Hillman and many others. All about the human shadow from theoretical, anecdotal and practical ways to be in relationship with those parts of ourselves we’d rather not know.
The Soul’s Code, In Search of Character and Calling by James Hillman (1996) – An inspiring call to deepen the questions we ask ourselves about our purpose, calling, character and soul. What is the gift only I am able to offer the world? And how do I go about discovering what that might be?
Ensouling Language by Stephen Harrod Buhner (2010) – This book is not just for writers. It is for anyone who wishes to live an embodied, artful, soulfully engaged life.
Becoming Animal by David Abram, Pantheon (2010)– Reading this book is a kinesthetic experience. Brings the reader to a keen understanding of the value of making contact with the cosmos through nature.
What Matters Most by James Hollis, Gotham (2009) – A call to deeply consider what it is that really matters most to us in many aspects of our lives.
The Great Work by Thomas Berry – Random House (1999) – A call to re-make our relationship with the earth and return to a sense of our sacred relationship with the earth and cosmos.
A Hidden Wholeness, The Journey Toward an Undivided Life by Parker J. Palmer (2004) A guidebook for growing the courage to bring ourselves more fully into the work of creating community with presence, integrity and compassion.
Extraordinary Relationships by Roberta Gilbert (2011) – An excellent road map for applying Bowen’s Family Systems concept of differentiation to ourselves. It is a guide for how to manage our internal emotional landscape so that we can engage in relationships with clarity and deeper intimacy.
Sitting in the Fire by Arnold Mindell, Lao Tse Press (1995) – A different way of conceptualizing and working with all kinds of conflict, from interpersonal to the international. A deeply compassionate look at what is beneath conflict and how to approach those hot spots with courage, compassion and responsibility.
Difficult Conversations by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton, Sheila Heen and Roger Fisher, Penguin (2010) An essential guide to, well, difficult conversations of all kinds. A digestible and easy to follow framework for engaging in conflict of all kinds.
The Book of Hours – by Rainier Maria Rilke (translated by Joanna Macy and Anita Barrows) Riverhead Trade, (2005) Rilke’s poems are as deeply relevant and beautiful as they were one hundred years ago.
How to be an Adult in Relationships by David Richo (2002) – Depth psychology meets Buddhism to offer a guide for engaging in our growth so that we can enter more deeply into the mutuality and intimacy of relationship.