“I love the smell of book ink in the morning.” – Umberto Eco
Hello. My name is Kimberly. And I am a book hoarder. Thankfully, I am in a space that supports book hoarders, so I decided to tap some of our contributors for MotherHouse and instructors of Mystery School of the Goddess to create an inspirational and fun Spring Reading List. They offered AMAZING recommendations and enough to keep you with books piled high through the summer!
Noodle, the Temple Kitty, and I also wanted to offer a few of our recommendations. She can frequently be found draped on or around a stack of books, so she is absorbing wisdom through osmosis, I guess. Me? Refer back to the book hoarder confession.
Seasonal changes mean we change how we eat. Setting new intentions? Looking for some inspiration? I love What to Eat for How You Feel – The New Ayurvedic Kitchen by Divya Alter. Great photos and scrumptious recipes that are easy to follow.
For any season, read anything by Terry Tempest Williams
Marisa McCall just did a book review on Ask Baba Yaga – loooove this book!
Wishing you much happy reading for Spring and always! You are invited to join me in my free community, The EveryDay Sacred Circle!
What are your favorite books right now? Leave a comment below!
Two books that I recommend for pleasure and peace are:
Who Cares?! The Unique Teachings of Ramesh S. Balsekar – Since consciousness is all there is, why judge it? That is what this book reminds me to practice. This body of work keeps me grounded + continually brings to my attention that we are not our bodies. Our bodies house consciousness. I am that I am is the important take away message.
Wisdomkeepers: Meetings with Native American Spiritual Elders by Steve Wall is my 2nd choice for reading material. Combining my heritage with the core ingredients of spirituality, patience + mindfulness, this body of work balances me. I learn something new each time I re-read the conversations of Medicine Men + Healers.
In the West by Nolan Cordovano
A western? Yes, a western. If you’re in need of a bit of escapism, head into this richly written novel about the old west toward the end of the 1800s. Well-drawn characters, strong central themes, and a page-turning ending. Along the way you’ll discover that though revenge is not the same as justice, it doesn’t mean it’s always wrong, and that in many circumstances understanding others can be as vital as understanding oneself, and that truth is more valuable than gold.
Dirty Pretty Things by Michael Faudet
Now this is more like it. A collection of poetry and some short stories about love, loss, lust, and sex that will make you smile, blush, and tingle in your naughty bits. Often erotic and always pointedly real and raw, Faudet captures what it feels like to experience love and desire and longing in all their dirty and pure and purely dirty forms.
**Brandi’s own book, The Goddess Guide, is mandatory for Goddess exploration. She offers gorgeous sprays, crystals, and other goodies on Red Wholistic and you can see all of her online courses on Mystery School of the Goddess here.
Springtime is the time of year when we welcome warmth and nature back into our lives after the cold, hard winter. The first book I would recommend for this time of year is The Crystal Bible by Judy Hall. It will help you get in touch with nature, and find ways to incorporate the power of stones into your everyday life.
The second book I would recommend is my 55 Ways to Connect to Goddess. It shows you ways to re-connect with nature and the Goddess in this time of rebirth through food, meditations, altars, and more.
**Lilith has a great free course on Mystery School of the Goddess, Love Magic Crystals. You can connect further with Lilith on her blog, Voodoo Universe and definitely check out her other book, Voodoo and Afro-Caribbean Paganism.
I have always loved food and words. My first published books, “(H)Story Made Visible”(1999) and “Through My Mother’s Window: Emirati Women tell their Stories and Recipes” (2016) deals with food and stories.
Jackie Kai Ellis’ memoir, The Measure of My Powers: A Memoir of Food, Misery and Paris is a book that I loved. The memoir includes delightful recipes, from the elaborate and difficult art of making croissants to simpler recipes, such as chocolate chip cookies. Jackie recounts the story of her struggle with depression and her movement towards healing and joy. Within this, are stories of her childhood and the trajectory of a marriage that unravels after eight years. As many good memoirs are, this one too recounts a journey to the self.
Happy reading! Blessings on your journey.
**If you are in Colorado at the end of May, Ranjini is teaching writing at the beautiful Tara Mandala retreat center as part of Wisdom Rising. You can also connect with her on her website, The Kuan Yin Story Cafe. We are looking forward to welcoming Ranjini as an instructor on Mystery School of the Goddess this summer.
Barbara Kingsolver’s Prodigal Summer. It’s a lush hymn to love and to the Earth herself. It always evokes long summer evenings on the porch listening to the cicadas.
Truth or Dare by Starhawk. Required reading for perilous times. This book helps me remember what we’re fighting for, and is always worth a re-read as I emerge from my winter reflection.
Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés
Originally published in 1992, this iconic book is in a renaissance at the moment. And for good reason! If you’re ready for the feminine revolution – divine, political, and personal – it’s time to (re)visit these myths. If you would like to read and discuss key chapters with fellow wild women, you’re welcome to join my 7-session audio course: https://thewildwomencollective.com/freebie
Change Your Mind: 57 Ways to Unlock Your Creative Self by Rod Judkins
Anyone else need a burst of fresh energy after a long, cosmically rough winter? Yeah, me too. This book is a quick read, with short graphic chapters you can flip through in any order that feels inspiring. I love the anecdotes about the creative lives of famous people. It’s fascinating.
**Gail is an instructor for Mystery School of the Goddess and has stellar online offerings – explore Gail’s offerings here
LAURI ANN LUMBY
When I think about spring reading, I long for something light and which makes me feel good. I love a good story with a little romance, and lots of magic. For my spring 2018 reading list, I would recommend the following:
For a beautiful, spiritual reflection on the life and teaching of bees, I recommend Song of Increase by Jacqueline Freeman. Part natural bee keeping guidebook and part shamanic journey, this beautiful work brings us into union with the bees and what we can learn from the way they live in harmony with one another and the environment.
I have enjoyed all of Paula Brackston’s “witch” books, including The Winter Witch, The Silver Witch and The Midnight Witch. They fit the bill when it comes to spring reading – light, fun, magical and stimulating to the imagination, maybe even helping us in our own desire to claim the witch within.
**Temple of the Magdalene has all of Lauri’s offerings for Mary Magdalene, including a Priestess path and all of Lauri’s books. Sink into the magic of the Magdalene. Also recommended, a Mary Magdalene reading list.
Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim is a fantastic, slow-moving, evocative novel about women waking up from the slumber of routine and challenging themselves to be who they truly are. After you read the book, watch the visually stunning film from 1992.
The Secret History by Donna Tartt is a page-turner about a group of college students who become obsessed with studying and reconstructing ancient languages and traditions…with shocking results. A great read with surprising twists and turns to keep you intrigued!
**Yeshe is available for readings, amazing candle rituals (seriously, you need to do one!), and other goodies through her online space, The Sacred Well.
I Remember Union, the story of Mary Magdalena, as told by her. It highlights Goddess and the women’s role in Jesus’s life. A must read by Flo Aveiea Magdalena.
The She Book. Just amazing. The author is definitely a wounded healer. She holds space so we, as women, can heal ourselves through self love. Really powerful book by Tanya Markul.
**Need some organic body bliss? Check out Kim’s organic line and sprays on Murphy’s Essentials.
“Ancient people saw and heard oracles everywhere because they lived in an ensouled world. The phrase ‘ensouled world’ may inspire us today, but perceiving everything around us as truly alive, brimming with consciousness, intensely present, and gazing back at us is an experience of a different order. Few adults living in modern culture are able to sustain an ensouled relationship with creation for more than a few moments at a time…” ~ Dianne Skafte
Listening to the Oracle by Dianne Skafte and The Spell of the Sensuous by David Abram because they both bring you into conscious contact and daily awareness of the beauty, power, mystery, and magic of the ensouled world in which we live.
In keeping with the popular view of shamanism as a tool for personal transcendence, the most sophisticated definition of “magic” that now circulates through the American counterculture is “the ability or power to alter one’s consciousness at will.” There is no mention made of any reason for altering one’s state of consciousness. Yet in tribal cultures that which we call “magic” takes all of its meaning from the fact that, in an indigenous and oral context, humans experience their own intelligence as simply one form of awareness among many others. ~ David Abram
Animal Healing and Vibrational Medicine – great for learning energetic healing remedies for your animals as well as for yourself. Something to always have around.
Language of the Goddess by Maria Gimbutas – Maria Gimbutas was an archeologist and scholar who put the goddess back on the map, bringing awareness to Her presence we have had for more than 8000 years on this planet. Symbols and story.
My Spring Bliss Reading List:
The earth is in her greening now; she is coming alive, awakening; shaking off all remnants of the sleepy winter, and bursting forth with new life, promise, and potential, and the world is in a state of becoming. What better way to celebrate this season of nature’s emergence than with these lovely books on the magic of flowers and trees by one of my favorite authors, Tess Whitehust.
**Renee’s book, You Are Women You Are Divine, is also highly recommended. Check out Renee’s online courses on Mystery School of the Goddess for more inspirational offerings, including a special offering for The Moon Witch if you register before 4/30.
Laurus by Evgenij Vodolazkin
I have recently found myself engulfed and enamored by plants. I signed up for a course on spiritual herbalism with a healer in Brooklyn, NY. Leading up to the course, I was a bit uncertain about whether to take the class and pay the fee, it’s a large sum for someone who always seems to be low on money, and I went through my stack of unread books next to my bed and selected this one. As soon as I begun to read it, I took it as a sign that this herbalism class was the right step. Done. No more doubt in my mind. I doubt I’ll be like Laurus, but I absolutely loved the story of his journey, and I can see and be grateful for my journey, now including plants. I highly recommend this book for the spring and summer journey, sisters!
The Book of Esther by Emily Barton
I read this book earlier this year. Another book in my growing pile of unread books that I purchased over a year ago. For some reason it bit, in January of this year and I’m glad it did. While not a favorite book of mine, it tells of a journey, a young Jewish woman’s journey into independence. It weaves the Biblical and Judaic story of Esther, who saved her people, into a modern-time WWII, Israel story of Esther, who refuses to give hope, and to give in to patriarchal authority. It is a story for us women, who may feel like we don’t know where to start. The author brings in aspects of our society that you might not expect, such as gender fluidity, and sexuality and enslavement. Again, I had some issues with the book, but I devoured it and felt like maybe Esther had a lesson for me. And maybe you too?
**Connect further with Sara on her site: S2Stationery.com
And a few of the recommended books from our other contributors and instructors:
A Serpentine Path: Mysteries of the Goddess by Carol P. Christ
Isis Magic by Isidora Forrest
Goddesses, Goddesses by Janine Canan
Goddess Spirituality for the 21st Century by Judith Laura
Minerva’s Owls by Mary Petiet
Voices of the Sacred Feminine by Karen Tate