“I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.”― Jorge Luis Borges
Spirituality is the deep craving we all share to connect with that which is greater than ourselves.
Throughout our lives, we occasionally feel the invitation to go deeper into exploring who we are, questioning the world around us, and transforming the way we relate to the world.
This journey isn’t one unique to our present day, and many have shared their discoveries and insights through books since the beginning of time.
If you feel the calling to go deeper into exploring who you are, keep reading!
Table of contents
What Makes a Spiritual Book Valuable?
With thousands of new spiritual books being published every year, how do we know what’s worth reading?
This is is the criteria I’ve used for the list below:
- It must have survived the test of time. We often give a lot of importance to the latest trendiest books or fashionable authors, but when it comes to spirituality, the best advice is timeless.
- It doesn’t focus on any particular religion. Spirituality and religion are deeply interconnected. I don’t focus on any promoting any particular religion in the below list and instead, prioritize the message.
- It is transformative. Spiritual books must have the ability to touch our hearts, change the way we look at the world and ourselves, and help us to access a sense of inner peace.
Best Spiritual Books (Fiction)
Deeply influenced by Gibran's book 'The Prophet,' The Book of Mirdad shares the wisdom of an abbot of a monastery that stands where Noah's ark came to rest after the flood. This deep book touches on a variety of themes and finds harmony through contradiction, birth through death, and unity through difference.
This is a story about Jonathan, a seagull whose passion for flying makes him different from other seagulls. His wish to perfect his flying results in him being an outcast from his group. At first finding this rejection devastating, the experience of him being outcasted culminates in him moving to a “higher plane” where he meets other seagulls like him and his subsequent return to his flock.
The Prophet is a book consisting of 26 poetic essays with the key message that love is central to everything. Gibran talks about life and death, marriage, religion, and spirituality in such a profound manner that it deeply echoes in one's soul.
Siddhartha follows the journey of a young Nepalese man named Siddhartha during the time of Buddha, and his quest to find spiritual enlightenment. Along the way, he makes several attempts at enlightenment but finds spiritual fulfillment in a much simpler way than the one proposed by all of the world’s wise men.
Best Spiritual Books (Non-Fiction)
The Tao Te Ching contains a series of ancient Chinese meditations on the mysterious nature of the Tao, the essence of life that is found where we least expect it. This is a book best read in small doses to let its wisdom reveal itself slowly to you. The translation you choose is also important. I recommend the Jonathan Star (the one pictured here) or the Jane English translations.
I have to include our own book here! In it, we detail the many stages, paths, and pitfalls connected with the sacred evolutionary process of spiritual awakening. With compassion and clarity, you are taken on a journey to retrieve the fragmented pieces of your inner self through the practice of inner work and Soul retrieval. By reconnecting with your Soul, you'll discover how to experience the joy, liberation, and peace that lies at the center of your being.
In The Untethered Soul, Singer explores the reality that you are not your passing thoughts or emotions: you are the quiet space behind your thoughts. Separating the two allows us to free ourselves from the endless attachment to those transient stories and find our true selves.
In this guide to compassionate living, Chödrön explains that we all armor our hearts, our "soft spots" instinctively and that to live well and in the present moment, we need to feel our emotions fully without letting them overwhelm us, while also expanding our compassion and loving-kindness for others.
Awareness by De Mello is full of hard truths that we sometimes need to hear if we want to mature in our journey such as "I'm an ass and you're an ass." He points out how we're all sleep walking through life, and clobbers us over the head with a firm but kind wake-up call.
Journey to the Heart is an enjoyable way of bringing new spiritual reflections and explorations of emotions into everyday life with its thoughtful daily passage. Chances are that you'll have many moments of synchronicity as you read the daily reflections.
Ruiz’s Four Agreements are based on ancient Toltec wisdom and provide a relatively simple formula for living well. The four agreements are: be impeccable with your word, don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions, and always do your best. This book can help us to shed false agreements we have made in life with ourselves, thus, coming closer to the Divine and our True Selves.
Let me know in the comments below if any of these books have resonated with you in a deep way.
If you think there are any other books that should be added to this list, feel free to share them also!