My Favorite Non-Fiction, Non-Trading Books
by Van K. Tharp, Ph.D.
My staff asked me to put together a list of my favorite non-fiction, non-trading books. I have a library at my house with several thousand such books, so picking just a few favorites from them is not very easy. In fact, you could take just a single topic, like NLP or Spiritual Growth, and I could probably come up with 10-15 books for each and every category. I decided to pick my favorite 15 overall — and actually, some of these are book sets. Also, many of these are recommended – if not required reading for the Super Trader Program.
So I’ll list my 15 favorites, not in order of preference but by category. Titles in bold are those books most likely to help you really transform.
Spiritual Books That Will Help You Move Toward Awakening
1) A Course in Miracles Channeled by Jesus through the scribe Helen Schucman
This book is actually made up of three works and the only one I really recommend you read is the workbook with 365 lessons. You do one lesson each day for 365 days, however, I must admit that I have done the course at least three times and I have never managed to complete it in a year. By lesson 75 you will begin to notice a major change in your life. Find this book on Amazon here.
2) The Disappearance of the Universe by Gary Reynard. I took four years to work through the lessons in A Course in Miracles
When someone presented me with this book much later, I read it and said, “A Course in Miracles said that?” And then Gary Reynard actually showed up in my area to give a one day workshop which I attended. That happened right after I had read his book and I have seen no sign that he has been back here since that time. All of this is interesting synchronicity. In any case, I had completely missed some major points in ACIM according to Gary’s book and thus I soon did the 365 lessons again. Thus, I recommend that you read The Disappearance of the Universe before you do the workbook lessons in A Course in Miracles. Find this book on Amazon here.
3) A Thousand Names for Joy by Byron Katie
When you read this book, you’ll understand how an awakened person thinks and that is a rare gift. In this book, Katie’s husband, Steven Mitchell, translates selections from the Tao Te Ching and then Katie elaborates on what those points mean to her. I had no trouble reading this book but I’d had many years of experience doing A Course in Miracles prior to that. If you find this reading this book to be difficult, then first do the 365 lessons in the workbook of A Course in Miracles. Find this book on Amazon here.
4) A Course In Love Channeled by Jesus through Mari Perron
This book came many years after Helen Schucman had died and it came through a different source. And this one you have to read. ACIM is about changing your thinking, this one is about changing your heart. Because you must read this text, I recommend that you do this one only after you are awake or have completed the 365 lessons from ACIM. Find this book on Amazon here.
More Spiritual Books (But Different From The First Class of Books)
5) The Secret of Quantum Living by Frank Kinslow
I was sitting in one of Ken Long’s technical workshops when someone approached me and said he had just read a book that was the secret to everything. I said okay and he told me about this book. Since this man tended to read a book a day, he asked me the next day how I liked it and of course, I hadn’t even started reading it. When I did read it, however, I thought he might be right about it being the secret to everything. In this case, I’m going to recommend listening to this book on Audible rather than buying the text version. Why? Because the audiobook provides a whole set of exercises that are not in the book — and those exercises are the key to Kinslow’s material. Find this book on Amazon here.
6) Power versus Force by David Hawkins
I don’t like all of Hawkins books, but I love this one. And while I don’t know how true his model of human consciousness is, I find it very useful and thus I recommend this book. The first five books listed above have the power to really transform you. This one is good, but it only contains useful concepts on how to think about consciousness. Find this book on Amazon here.
7) The Magic by Rhonda Byrne
So let’s go back to books that will really transform you. This is one. It focuses on the topic of gratitude and contains a 28-day program that will change your life. I require people to complete this book in the follow-up program after our Peak Performance 203 workshop. Find this book on Amazon here.
8) The Five Levels of Attachment by Don Miquel Ruiz Jr.
If you read this book, it will totally change how you think about beliefs. I don’t know that there are enough exercises in it to change your life but this book is very, very interesting. When you understand how attached we can become to our beliefs and the impact of that attachment, you’ll understand why people can kill others because of their beliefs. Find this book on Amazon here.
9) Why We Believe What We Believe by Dr. Andrew Newberg and Mark Robert Waldman
This is not a book about transformation but it is one of the most comprehensive texts on the topic of beliefs that I have ever read. And it really illustrates how your reality is made up of your beliefs. Find this book on Amazon here.
10) Strategies of Genius — Volumes I, II, and III by Robert Dilts
In this three-volume set, Robert Dilts modeled the genius of some of the great legends of the past. These include (in Volume 1) Aristotle, the fictional character of Sherlock Holmes, Walt Disney, and Wolfgang Mozart. Volume 2 is devoted to entirely to Einstein. And Volume 3 covers Sigmund Freud, Leonardo da Vinci, and Nikola Tesla. I personally believe this work shows the genius behind NLP modeling.
11) NLP Going Meta: Advanced Modeling using Meta Levels by L. Michael Hall, Ph.D.
This book isn’t for everyone and without a lot of background in NLP, it will be pretty hard to understand. In addition, Dr. Hall’s writing style leaves a lot to be desired, however, it is my favorite book on NLP Modeling. In my opinion, modeling is what NLP is all about. Find this book on Amazon here.
12) The Big Book of NLP Expanded by Shlomo Vaknin
Again, this isn’t easy reading but the author presents more than 350+ NLP techniques and methodologies. So if you want a sourcebook for NLP, this is probably it. Find this book on Amazon here.
Other Favorite Books
13) You’ll See It When You Believe It by Dr. Wayne Dyer
Wayne Dyer has written many books and this is definitely my favorite. This is an easy read with the potential to transform you. Find this book on Amazon here.
14) Resurfacing by Harry Palmer
The basic Avatar course is nine days long and this book contains the first three days of the course. It has many transformational exercises that I highly recommend. While there are some aspects of Avatar that I do not like (I’ve taken the basic course twice, the master course once, and the wizard course twice), you can’t go wrong by spending some time with this particular book. Palmer’s other basic book, Living Deliberately is also a favorite of mine. Find this book on Amazon here.
15) Conversations with God — Books 1, 2, and 3 by Neale Donald Walsch
I found these books useful not for the information they contained but for their statement that anyone can have a conversation with God. At first I didn’t believe it, but now I have regular written conversations with my Inner Guidance and that’s something anyone can do. I like these three books as evidence for that.