The 10 favorite books game…
1. “I Ching” (Wilhelm/Baynes trans.) Consulting this oracle in 1972 on the subject of going to a school called Sherborne (J.G. Bennett, Principal), I twice got this hexagram, months apart: “In relation to the human world, it denotes the creative action of the holy man or sage, of the ruler or leader of men, who through his power awakens and develops their higher nature.”
2. “The Asian Journal of Thomas Merton” – Many times have I come back to look at this passage – from the Appendix III. He was speaking to a group of monks from various religions, at Calcutta, October, 1968: “… the monk in the modern world… is a marginal person who withdraws deliberately to the margin of society with a view to deepening fundamental human experience… Thus I find myself representing perhaps hippies among you, poets, people of this kind who are seeking in all sorts of ways and have absolutely no established status whatever…”
3. “Gurdjieff – Making a New World” by J.G. Bennett. One of the parts I have returned to again and again, in the Chapter called The Law of Reciprocal Maintenance: “The world was brought into existence because ‘being’ and ‘time’ are mutually destructive. Everything separate and closed within itself must perish for lack of a principle of renewal. There is partial renewal by borrowing energy from outside, but this is not enough. Full renewal requires full mutuality. It is by Universal giving and receiving of energies that Cosmic Harmony is maintained.”
4. “Culture, Crisis, and Creativity” by Dane Rudhyar – particularly the chapter on the Inner Space of Tones: “In the piano… if large chords are struck, integrating the sounds produced by the strings of properly distanced keys, and the pedal is pressed allowing for total sounding board resonance, the gong-tone effect is obtained… in which tones replace words and seek either to convey a message or to release a magical transformative impact.”
5. “The Heretics” by Walter Nigg: “The heretic has this in common with the prophet and the saint: that he is religiously alive… and prepared to sacrifice everything for his faith. He is the extreme antithesis of the indifferentist…”
6. “A Gymnasium of Beliefs in Higher Intelligence” by Anthony Blake – this book is, for me, a catalyst for experiences! “There is no reason to suppose that intelligence is restricted to organic or quasi-organic forms and species. But we will leave the question of communing with the stars or other inorganic bodies to some other place.” … (David took that as a challenge!)
7. “The Aquarian Conspiracy” by Marilyn Ferguson, who was a keynote speaker at a holistic health conference I went to in 1981 or ‘82. I expected her to be just another speaker – but I went to hear her anyway. It turned out that her talk was an energy channeling… not labeled as such, but that’s certainly how I experienced it.
8. and 9. and 10. I met a mysterious man in 1969, going only by the name of Richard, with a perfect star in the lines on the palm of his hand. He told me to read 3 books which, he said, would put me on a different path in life. They did. The 3 were: “Stranger in a Strange Land” by Robert Heinlein & “The Little Prince” by Antoine de Saint-Expery & “Siddhartha” by Hermann Hesse.