Spiritual fulfillment books

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thrifty++
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Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by thrifty++ » Thu Dec 29, 2016 3:30 am

Seeking a recommendation on a spiritual fulfillment book.

Hoping someone can recommend.

Nothing specifically FI.

Something focussed on purpose of life, happiness, spirtual engagement etc.

Someone mentioned a really good recommendation on here months ago but I forgot to take note of it but it sounded along the lines of the above, and of good taste and quality.

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FBeyer
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by FBeyer » Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:35 am

A guide to the good life life by William Irvine? Stoicism?

tdurtsch
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by tdurtsch » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:04 pm

I'd recommend anything from Alan Watts. Last I checked, many of his lectures are available on YouTube. He has several books as well.

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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by jacob » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:41 pm

It seems to me that the answer to this question depends on "which spirit" one wishes to fulfill---and the answer to that question seems supremely personal. Rudimentarily(SP?!) speaking, is it the spirit of desiring some order and plan to the universe where the good (typically you and your in-group) are eventually rewarded and the bad (those other meanies) are eventually punished? Is it the spirit of reconciling your otherwise rational world view with certain emotions you likely experience every time humans act stupid? Is it the spirit that explains patterns in things you see or feel deeply but defy explanation? Or do you just want to belong/go along?

If you get the impression that I just listed the four major types of the MBTI, that's no accident on my part.

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chenda
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by chenda » Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:58 pm

jacob wrote: Is it the spirit of reconciling your otherwise rational world view with certain emotions you likely experience every time humans act stupid?
This is so what I need Jacob - thoughts ?

@op - I recall there was some discussion regarding Epictetus recently you might want to try searching...

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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by jacob » Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:05 pm

@chenda - Try stoicism, nihilism, or fatalism. I would suggest going about them in the order listed.

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chenda
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by chenda » Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:09 pm

Thank you @Jacob

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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by jacob » Thu Dec 29, 2016 6:53 pm

@chenda - I think that my answer wasn't that helpful, being too vague ...

In more detail ... but realizing the very important fact that such lessons are unlikely to be appreciated before one---through some idiosyncratic path of enlightenment---is ready to appreciate them. At least, that's been my experience.

For frustrated rationals, I would almost always recommend starting with this:

https://www.amazon.com/How-Found-Freedo ... 0965603679

It's one of those books that's impressive or the diametric opposite depending on how wise/life-experienced you are the first time you read it. Much like Atlas Shrugged. (IIRC Browne wrote this in his mid-late 30s. Of course, chronological age past the age of 12 has little meaning in terms of maturity. I don't think most people ever reach the point Browne was at when he wrote it. I also note that he subsequently mellowed out and violated a couple of his earlier firebrand edicts later in life. Sounds familiar... smart enough to avoid the hobgoblins...)

Then try Irvine or go directly to the source (there's only a few survivors, and by a "a few" I mean 3) of Aurelius (Roman emperor), Seneca (Rich Roman senator), or Epictetus (Freed slave and crippled) depending on which one speaks to you. My guess is that in relation to the above, the average ERE forum member ("21st century software engineer"-ish) is probably closest to "Roman Emperor" in terms of personal sentiments/confidence in their own agency :? :P

After that, look at the cynics (which is like ERE but without FU money but better/way more robust and resilient) and if you think that this forum is composed of cool dudes and dudettes, cynicism is probably where it's at ... unfortunately, there's no writing in existence(?), because cynics, much like ourselves, are generally perceived as proper a*holes or arrogant bastards by the public.---Not someone the average person would wanna have a beer with because of a preference for always bringing up inconvenient facts and pooping the party. So all we have from Diogenes is ... watered down stoicism. Much like ... ahh ... I digress.

Now, if that's not working out ... nihilism is the next-best step. I prefer Nietzsche. While Kierkegaard is popular in the Anglo-world, he's largely ignored in his native land; where I grew up---Fun fact: I actually celebrated some important family event in the restaurant where he used to hang out, not that this lends me any insight to his philosophy beyond the few hours we spent on him in HS at the pain of poor grades. The idea that "it is what it is" might work out well for you. It works for me, but it took the 2016 US election to clinch it for me. In some [STEM sciency] ways nihilism is actually quite easy to deal with as long as you no longer care about outcomes. I would, however, at present point, recommend against devolving into existential sadness (like Satre) or postmodernism crap (like Derrida et all) because those are stupid in the direction of either emotion or reason, respectively. Because even if you no longer care, you still have to deal with the outcome of choices you make in reality and postmodern stupidity is just not very effectual.

I don't have any comments on fatalism but I suppose that would be a reasonable next step from nihilism. Ask me again in 10 years?

As an alternative, there's also beer, but I also recommend against that as a long term solution to such problems as it will reduce life expectancy by 1-2 decades.

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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by C40 » Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:21 pm

With very little to go on for what you mean as Spirituality, this came to mind: The Way of the Superior Man: A Spiritual Guide to Mastering the Challenges of Women, Work, and Sexual Desire. It was very useful for me when I read it (about ten years ago). I thought it was a little bit foo-foo but hey, that's what you're asking for. It wasn't off-putting. I guess I'd describe the foo-foo-ness as "spiritual" :-)


As far as Stoicism, I'd recommend you first just get and read a copy of The Enchiridion (Epictetus). It's so straightforward that you don't need the Irvine book to put it in any other language. The Irvine book may help a bit with Aurelius and Seneca, but they are straightforward too. I suppose the Irvine book helps to explain who the three are, put things in perspective, and is has a more normal "book" structure (none of the Stoic books are written like current books are.. Structurally they are comparable to books that are just compilations of all the posts from a blog)

pukingRainbows
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by pukingRainbows » Thu Dec 29, 2016 10:58 pm

I am reading and enjoying
The Book of Awakening by Mark Nepo.
It's a collection of daily thoughts/ideas/meditations about being present in your current life.

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fiby41
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by fiby41 » Fri Dec 30, 2016 2:46 am

Shrimat Bhagvat Geeta
श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता

Frosti85
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by Frosti85 » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:40 am

"Why Buddhism is true" was a very interesting read.

It's about evolutionary psychology, fear/desire, the ego illusion, nature of conciousness, meditation,
basically a lot of concepts from buddhism scientifically analysed.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by distracted_at_work » Thu Nov 16, 2017 12:59 pm

Picked up "At Home in the World" by Thich Nhat Hanh on a walkthrough the library. A collection of stories from a Vietnamese monk's life and what he learned from them. I'd highly recommend. Themes about overcoming adversity, tragedy, evil through empathy, breathing and reflection.

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FBeyer
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by FBeyer » Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:37 pm

Frosti85 wrote:
Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:40 am
"Why Buddhism is true" was a very interesting read.
Thank you. I just ordered that and No Mud, No Lotus from the library. I think I might finally be ready to read some of his stuff.
When the student is ready, and all that... :oops:

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:53 pm

Man's Search for Meaning might qualify.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: Spiritual fulfillment books

Post by distracted_at_work » Thu Nov 16, 2017 5:15 pm

Gilberto de Piento wrote:
Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:53 pm
Man's Search for Meaning might qualify.
Absolutely qualifies imo. Finding a purpose to live.

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