Here are some of the best consciousness expanding books I have read:
1. Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently - Gregory Berns
Stuck on the same old perspectives: The mind is lazy. To conserve energy and to maintain efficiency, it simply copies thoughts from others and builds reality from past experiences, meaning the mind is not open to the truth and reality of the present moment. The mind simply does not have the processing power & the resources needed to process each moment of reality with a new perspective.
Shifting perspectives: The only way to rewire the neural connections is to consistently have new experiences that reinforce the new perspectives & forces the mind to break old patterns.
2. Free Will - Sam Harris
We cannot control our thoughts. We cannot predict what thoughts we will have. And scientific experiments have shown that there is a few seconds lag between the moment a thought appears in the mind & the moment the individual becomes aware of the thought. Which means the thought is a result of the physical, electrical & chemical processes of the brain & not something that we consciously come upon. And that means there really is no Free Will.
3. The Elegant Universe - Brain Greene
General Relativity explains the Universe on the macroscopic scale of galaxies (the world of infinitely large).
Quantum mechanics explains the microscopic world of atomic particles (the world of infinitely small).
At the singularity of Big Bang & the singularity of a black hole, we confront infinitely large mass in an infinitely small space, and General Relativity & Quantum mechanics break down. String Theory could be the answer for a Unified Theory that explains the macroscopic & the microscopic.
4. The Power of Your Subconscious Mind - Joseph Murphy
The Subconscious mind is infinite but it creates reality based on the suggestions & feedback from the conscious mind. If the conscious mind is trapped in a negative thought pattern, the subconscious mind will manifest negative experiences. Whatever the conscious mind imposes upon the subconscious, the subconscious will turn it into reality.
5. The Road Less Traveled - M. Scott Peck
Life is difficult. Childhood scars do much damage in adult life. And relationships should not take away your individuality & prevent you from walking the path that calls out to you.
6. The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho
Walking down the path that calls out to us is a solitary journey full of twist & turns that requires endurance, perseverance, sacrifices and an openness to receive the Omens and the guidance from the Universe.
"Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun. Orbiting this at a distance of roughly ninety-eight million miles is an utterly insignificant little blue-green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea."
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
"The Time Traveler (for so it will be convenient to speak of him) was expounding a recondite matter to us."
The Time Machine - H.G.Wells
"Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult - once we truly understand and accept it - then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters."
The Road Less Traveled - Scott Peck
The Cosmos is all that is or ever was or ever will be. Our feeblest contemplations of the Cosmos stir us - there is a tingling in the spine, a catch in the voice, a faint sensation, as if a distant memory, of falling from a height. We know we are approaching the greatest of mysteries.
Cosmos - Carl Sagan
"By human standards it could not possibly have been artificial: It was the size of a world. But it was so oddly and intricately shaped, so clearly intended for some complex purpose that it could only have been the expression of an idea. Gliding in polar orbit about the great blue-white star, it resembled some immense, imperfect polyhedron, encrusted with millions of bowl-shaped barnacles. Every bowl was aimed at a particular part of the sky. Every constellation was being attended to. The polyhedral world had been performing its enigmatic function for eons. It was very patient. It could afford to wait forever."
Contact - Carl Sagan
The love for books & a hunger for stories was programmed into my DNA. And, sooner than later, life experiences sealed the deal. Books have saved me, transformed my life, enlightened me and have shown me the path I must walk. In a way, far too many books have played the role of kindred spirits and guides, leading the seeker in me to answers and paving a way for a new way of life. Books have helped me keep my wits, my sense of wonder, my sense of mystery and curiosity & my sanity in a life that has been anything but predictable and normal.