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Books on Sobriety, Sprituality and Self Improvement

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Book IconOne thing about sobriety is that you do seem to have more time. When we first started our sobriety we read Alcoholics Anonymous's Big Book. This book definitely helped us and we re-read it as often as we can, because there is always something new that we discover. It seems as if you grow into the different stages of sobriety your mind becomes open to more and more ideas. We have found the best books are ones that are recommended by people who are active in their recovery. We currently have a list of books that we have read recently, or plan to read. Also, if you would like to suggest a book and/or write a review on a book send us an email.


  • Alcoholics Anonymous (The Big Book) - Alcoholics Anonymous free online version. Alcoholics Anonymous-the Big Book-has served as a lifeline to millions worldwide. First published in 1939, Alcoholics Anonymous sets forth cornerstone concepts of recovery from alcoholism and tells the stories of men and women who have overcome the disease. With publication of the second edition in 1955, the third edition in 1976, and now the fourth edition in 2001, the essential recovery text has remained unchanged while personal stories have been added to reflect the growing and diverse fellowship. The long-awaited fourth edition features 24 new personal stories of recovery.



  • Addictive Thinking: Understanding Self-Deception - Abraham J. Twerski, MD. Addictive Thinking, first published in 1990, opens the door to recovery by examining the addictive thought process. Through vivid examples and case studies, the book illustrates the irrational perspective of addictive thinking and how it leads to low self-esteem, addiction and relapse. In the revised edition, author and psychiatrist Abraham Twerski brings new depth and understanding of how people overcome addictive thinking and break down the barriers to achieving their goals in recovery.
    The new edition includes: expanded information on depression and affective disorders, an in-depth examination on the relationship between addictive thinking and relapse, and a discussion on the new research related to the origins of addictive thinking.



  • The Courage to Change - Dennis Wholey. In this powerful, inspiring volume, former "Late Night America" host and recovering alcoholic Dennis Wholey tells his story. In addition, celebrities from Doc Severinson to Sid Caesar to Jason Robards speak in their own words about the devastating effects of alcoholism.





  • When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times - Pema Chodron. Pema Chodron, a student of Chogyam Trunpa Rinpoche and Abbot of Gampo Abbey, has written the Tibetan Buddhist equivalent of Harold Kushner's famous book, When Bad Things Happen to Good People. As the author indicates in the postscript to her book: "We live in difficult times. One senses a possibility they may get worse." Consequently, Chodron's book is filled with useful advice about how Buddhism helps readers to cope with the grim realities of modern life, including fear, despair, rage and the feeling that we are not in control of our lives. Through reflections on the central Buddhist teaching of right mindfulness, Chodron orients readers and gives them language with which to shape their thinking about the ordinary and extraordinary traumas of modern life. But most importantly, Chodron demonstrates how effective the Buddhist point of view can be in bringing order into disordered lives.


  • The Art of Forgiveness, Lovingkindness and Peace - Jack Kornfield. Over the centuries, many people have kept commonplace books, or repositories of personally meaningful quotations and reflections. Not a diary or a journal, a commonplace book was an individual' s means of engaging with the world through the ideas of others. Here, Kornfield (After the Ecstasy, the Laundry and A Path with Heart) offers an uncommonly specialized form of commonplace book, this one focusing on the issues of forgiveness and peacemaking. He casts his net wide, drawing spiritual wisdom from the expected sources (the Dhammapada, the Diamond Sutra, the teachings of the Buddha and various masters) as well as some surprising newcomers for a Buddhist book: Mother Teresa, Thomas Merton, Meister Eckhart, the Tao Te Ching, the New Testament and the Bhagavad Gita. Such eclecticism works well in its context; Kornfield strives to demonstrate that forgiveness is a process, and that it is possible for flawed and ordinary people to forgive others and themselves. A concluding section on inner peace is a humble and wise primer; Kornfield makes the point that true inner peace does not arise from withdrawal from the world but from greater connectedness with it. Each section includes actual rituals to encourage readers to forgive, practice lovingkindness and know peace. While the book mines well-trod territory, it does so with perception and grace.



  • The Miracle of Mindfulness - Thich Nhat Hanh. Miracle of Mindfulness is a sly commentary on the Anapanasati Sutra, the Sutra on Breath to Maintain Mindfulness. "Sly" because it doesn't read like a dry commentary at all. One of Thich Nhat Hanh's most popular books, Miracle of Mindfulness is about how to take hold of your consciousness and keep it alive to the present reality, whether eating a tangerine, playing with your children, or washing the dishes. A world-renowned Zen master, Nhat Hanh weaves practical instruction with anecdotes and other stories to show how the meditative mind can be achieved at all times and how it can help us all "reveal and heal." Nhat Hanh is a master at helping us find a calm refuge within ourselves and teaching us how to reach out from there to the rest of the world.



  • Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness - Bhante Henepola Gunaratana. In the same engaging style that has endeared him to readers of his bestselling Mindfulness in Plain English, Bhante Gunaratana delves deeply into each step of the Buddha's most profound teaching on bringing an end to suffering: the noble eightfold path. With generous and specific advice, Eight Mindful Steps to Happiness — a Foreword magazine Book of the Year Awards finalist — offers skillful ways to handle anger, find right livelihood, and cultivate loving-friendliness in relationships with parents, children, and partners. It also offers tools to overcome all the mental hindrances that prevent happiness. Whether you are an experienced meditator or someone who's only just beginning to practice mindfulness, this gentle and down-to-earth guide will help you bring the heart of the Buddha's teachings into every aspect of your life.



  • Mindfulness in Plain English - Bhante Henepola Gunaratana free online version . With his distinctive clarity and wit, "Bhante G" takes us step by step through the myths, realities, and benefits of meditation and the practice of mindfulness. We already have the foundation we need to live a more productive and peaceful life - Bhante simply points to each tool of meditation, tells us what it does, and how to make it work. This expanded edition includes the complete text of its bestselling predecessor, as well as a new chapter on the cultivation of loving kindness, an especially important subject in today's world.


    ------ A very good friend said she liked the following excerpt - And we agree ------
    pg 86 "'Discipline' is a difficult word for most of us. It conjures up images of somebody standing over you with a stick, telling you that you're wrong. But self-discipline is different. It's the skill of seeing through the hollow shouting of your own impulses and piercing their secret. They have no power over you. It's all a show, a deception. Your urges scream and bluster at you; they cajole; they coax; they threaten; but they really carry no stick at all.

    You give in out of habit. You give in because you never really bother to look beyond the threat. It is all empty back there. There is only one way to learn this lesson, though. The words on this page won't do it. But look within and watch the stuff coming up--restlessness, anxiety, impatience, pain-- just watch it come up and don't get involved. Much to your surprise, it will simply go away. It rises, it passes away. As simple as that. There is another word for 'self-discipline'. It is 'Patience'.

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