42 books like The Bhagavad Gita

By Eknath Easwaran, Vyasa,

Here are 42 books that The Bhagavad Gita fans have personally recommended if you like The Bhagavad Gita. Shepherd is a community of 9,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Into the Wild

M. R. Reed Author Of Enthrall

From my list on doing what is right when others are against you.

Who am I?

I’m drawn to the idea of doing what you think is right when others are against you because I’ve always felt the desire to row against the current and just do my own thing. I tend to avoid following the crowd because oftentimes I simply don’t agree with them. Am I being purposely difficult? Maybe. But I fear a society that goes with the flow simply because it’s easier and it doesn’t require them to think for themselves. It’s okay to listen to other people, but before you make any major decisions, ask yourself a question: Is this right for me?

M. R.'s book list on doing what is right when others are against you

M. R. Reed Why did M. R. love this book?

Here’s my confession: I hated Chris McCandless by the time I finished this book. I hated his cockiness and lack of respect for the power of the wilderness.

But you know what I give him credit for? His ability to leave his life of privilege and the courage to go out into the world and forge his own destiny. He did what he thought was best for him despite the pushback he received from his friends and family.

I think I hated him so much because I wanted him to succeed, and he doomed himself through his own hubris. 

By Jon Krakauer,

Why should I read it?

18 authors picked Into the Wild as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Krakauer’s page-turning bestseller explores a famed missing person mystery while unraveling the larger riddles it holds: the profound pull of the American wilderness on our imagination; the allure of high-risk activities to young men of a certain cast of mind; the complex, charged bond between fathers and sons.

"Terrifying... Eloquent... A heart-rending drama of human yearning." —New York Times

In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all…


Book cover of Mortality

Loren Mayshark Author Of Death: An Exploration: Learning To Embrace Life's Most Feared Mystery

From my list on the art of living and dying.

Who am I?

Loren Mayshark is the author of three non-fiction books. His first book Death: An Exploration won the 2016 Beverly Hills Book Award in the category of Death & Dying and was selected as the honorable mention recipient for the book of the year in the 2016 Foreword INDIES Awards in the category of Grief/Grieving (Adult Nonfiction). Mayshark has a BA in World History with a minor in World Religion from Manhattanville College.

Loren's book list on the art of living and dying

Loren Mayshark Why did Loren love this book?

Hitchens was a man on a mission with a razor sharp intellect. These precious words written while Hitchens was losing a fatal battle with cancer are fascinating and he touches on some profound ideas. I was especially struck by the conviction of a man who was a staunch atheist unflinchingly prepared for a godless death. Hitchens was not only witty, but inspirational and courageous.

By Christopher Hitchens,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mortality as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The starting point of this book was when Christopher Hitchens found he was being deported 'from the country of the well across the stark frontier that marks off the land of malady'. Over the next year he underwent the brutal gamut of cancer treatment, enduring huge levels of suffering and eventually losing the power of speech.

Mortality is at once an unsparingly honest account of the ravages of his disease and the climax of a lifetime's work of fierce debate and peerless prose. In this confrontation with mortality Hitchens writes eloquently of his fear of losing the ability to write,…


Book cover of Becoming Enlightened

Loren Mayshark Author Of Death: An Exploration: Learning To Embrace Life's Most Feared Mystery

From my list on the art of living and dying.

Who am I?

Loren Mayshark is the author of three non-fiction books. His first book Death: An Exploration won the 2016 Beverly Hills Book Award in the category of Death & Dying and was selected as the honorable mention recipient for the book of the year in the 2016 Foreword INDIES Awards in the category of Grief/Grieving (Adult Nonfiction). Mayshark has a BA in World History with a minor in World Religion from Manhattanville College.

Loren's book list on the art of living and dying

Loren Mayshark Why did Loren love this book?

This is the longest book on the list and the one I have read most recently. I keep coming back to this book again and again for insights and inspiration. The ageless wisdom of the Dalai Lama comes alive in a book that is not only informative but is actionable. As someone who has long been interested in Buddhism this gem not only is a deep dive into the philosophy of Tibetan Buddhism but it goes into the theme of Enlightenment in a way that I have never found elsewhere.

This book is filled with insights that reveal so much about the Dalai Lama and the ancient philosophy that governs himself and his people. There is something profound here to be discovered for anyone thinking deeply about life, death, Buddhism, and enlightenment.

By Dalai Lama XIV,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Becoming Enlightened as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Happily, we do not have to remain trapped by the past. His Holiness reveals how life-enhancing Buddhist practices, as relevant today as they have ever been, can help us break free from the cycles of suffering that ensnare us. He encourages us to broaden our outlook and to adjust our personal values. And he gives us the tools to deal with any negative emotions we may experience in the process.

Practical, step-by-step exercises, steeped in wisdom, show how to make the most of each moment; how to undo the negative effects of past deeds; and how you can enjoy spiritual…


Book cover of Tao Te Ching

Neal Allen Author Of Better Days: Tame Your Inner Critic

From my list on books on spirituality for people who hate books on spirituality.

Who am I?

Until my early 50s, I detested all things spiritual. These books showed up practically on their own, without dogma or jargon, mainly to convince me that the divine existed. They’re easy to read and open to interpretation. They tricked me into a spiritual life by making it seem logical and simply a place to explore at my leisure. I try to write things that are clear and simple, and these books persuaded me that the ineffable isn’t so hard to write about. Also, I could return to these books years later, and they still speak to me. Each is capable of opening something new to me later in life.

Neal's book list on books on spirituality for people who hate books on spirituality

Neal Allen Why did Neal love this book?

Most ancient wisdom texts require a lot of effort. I love the Bible, the Bhagavad Gita, the Buddhist Discourses, Dogen, Plato, Krishnamurti, and so on. But to read them, I have to take some time out of my day.

This book is a scroll of 81 aphorisms. I can pick any one, spend a little time with it, and get on with my day.

Plus, it starts with a bang: “The Way that you hear about is not the real Way.” I am invited to be confused! That takes all the pressure off me to figure it out. 

By Lao Tzu, Gia-fu Geng (translator), Jane English (translator) , Toinette Lippe (translator)

Why should I read it?

7 authors picked Tao Te Ching as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For nearly two generations, this bestselling translation of the Tao Te Ching has been the standard for those seeking access to the wisdom of Taoist thought. Now Jane English and her long-time editor, Toinette Lippe, have refreshed and revised the translation, so that it more faithfully reflects the Classical Chinese in which it was first written, while taking into account changes in our own language and eliminating any lingering infelicities. This beautiful oversized edition features over a hundred new photographs by Jane English that help express the vast spirit of the Tao. Also included is an introduction by the well-known…


Book cover of I Am That: Talks with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

Duff McDonald Author Of Tickled: A Commonsense Guide to the Present Moment

From my list on to help you find your true self.

Who am I?

That’s the eternal question, isn’t it? Out here in the manifestation, I am Duff McDonald, author and journalist, father of Marguerite, husband of Joey, and general man about town. I’m a Canadian who moved to the U.S. to go to college and never went back. But who am I, really? I am the same thing as everyone else, a speck of consciousness in the possibility machine, a perfect creation. This whole thing has divine origins, something I only realized not that long ago, and it set me free. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I have, of late, discovered that maximizing one’s awareness is the main quest of a human life.

Duff's book list on to help you find your true self

Duff McDonald Why did Duff love this book?

I don’t like rankings — I think we count and rank to our collective detriment – but if I had to make a list of the most important books I’ve ever read, this would probably be on top of the list. What is it about? It’s about finding your true self. On the one hand, the task couldn’t be simpler: You are what you are, so there’s hardly a Hardy Boys mystery to crack here. On the other, we cloud our own understanding with so much illusion that few of us have the capacity to see the truth about ourselves. Maharaj can be a bit prickly, but he’s more love than anything else. If you try this book and you can’t connect to it, put it down and return to it later. That’s what I did – the first time, it was impenetrable; the second time, it penetrated to the…

By Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked I Am That as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of From the Finite to the Infinite

Duff McDonald Author Of Tickled: A Commonsense Guide to the Present Moment

From my list on to help you find your true self.

Who am I?

That’s the eternal question, isn’t it? Out here in the manifestation, I am Duff McDonald, author and journalist, father of Marguerite, husband of Joey, and general man about town. I’m a Canadian who moved to the U.S. to go to college and never went back. But who am I, really? I am the same thing as everyone else, a speck of consciousness in the possibility machine, a perfect creation. This whole thing has divine origins, something I only realized not that long ago, and it set me free. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I have, of late, discovered that maximizing one’s awareness is the main quest of a human life.

Duff's book list on to help you find your true self

Duff McDonald Why did Duff love this book?

Baba Muktananda is surely the most entertaining – dare I say, “cool” — of all the great gurus. This book, a collection of Satsang, or Q&A sessions, with the Siddha Yoga Guru, is a very easy-going, unpretentious discussion of the most important things about finding yourself. As the title promises, you are not a finite being; you are infinite. It’s very convincing.

By Swami Muktananda,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked From the Finite to the Infinite as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This compilation of questions and answers, drawn from talks and conversations between Swami Muktananda and spiritual seekers he met as he traveled in the West, covers a range of topics, from the first questioning of the nature of existence to the final attainment.


Book cover of The Yoga of Discipline

Duff McDonald Author Of Tickled: A Commonsense Guide to the Present Moment

From my list on to help you find your true self.

Who am I?

That’s the eternal question, isn’t it? Out here in the manifestation, I am Duff McDonald, author and journalist, father of Marguerite, husband of Joey, and general man about town. I’m a Canadian who moved to the U.S. to go to college and never went back. But who am I, really? I am the same thing as everyone else, a speck of consciousness in the possibility machine, a perfect creation. This whole thing has divine origins, something I only realized not that long ago, and it set me free. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I have, of late, discovered that maximizing one’s awareness is the main quest of a human life.

Duff's book list on to help you find your true self

Duff McDonald Why did Duff love this book?

I don’t think that I am different from the majority when I say that for most of my life, the idea of “discipline” wasn’t that attractive to me. I wanted freedom. But in this book, as well as all her other books, the Siddha meditation master Gurumayi Chidvilasnanada convinced me that the means to a perfect existence must come through discipline. You cannot find yourself if you do not first sort yourself out. The goal isn’t recklessness; it’s improvisation within defined constraints. That’s where the magic happens. Gurumayi is one of the clearest thinkers and writers that I have ever come across. More importantly, everything she writes is infused with love.

By Gurumayi Chidvilasananda,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Yoga of Discipline as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this collection of fourteen talks, Gurumayi Chidvilasananda teaches students how to cultivate yoga discipline of the senses on the Siddha Yoga path.


Book cover of The Life Divine

Duff McDonald Author Of Tickled: A Commonsense Guide to the Present Moment

From my list on to help you find your true self.

Who am I?

That’s the eternal question, isn’t it? Out here in the manifestation, I am Duff McDonald, author and journalist, father of Marguerite, husband of Joey, and general man about town. I’m a Canadian who moved to the U.S. to go to college and never went back. But who am I, really? I am the same thing as everyone else, a speck of consciousness in the possibility machine, a perfect creation. This whole thing has divine origins, something I only realized not that long ago, and it set me free. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I have, of late, discovered that maximizing one’s awareness is the main quest of a human life.

Duff's book list on to help you find your true self

Duff McDonald Why did Duff love this book?

Sri Aurobindo is, in my opinion, the greatest writer of them all. His poetic prose hypnotizes while swirling around the most profound ideas of all — What is the divine? How can we know the truth? What is the best way to live? The Life Divine is Aurobindo’s magnum opus, his articulation of the path to self-realization and how to use it to make the world a better place. In other words, it’s everything you need to know.

By Sri Aurobindo,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Life Divine as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Life Divine explores for the Modern mind the great streams of Indian metaphysical thought, reconciling the truths behind each and from this synthesis extends in terms of consciousness the concept of evolution. The unfolding of Earth's and man's spiritual destiny is illuminated, pointing the way to a Divine Life on Earth. Index.


Book cover of God Talks with Arjuna: The Bhagavad Gita

Suresh Ramaswamy Author Of Just Be: Transform Your Life and Live as Infinity

From my list on transformation for enlightenment.

Who am I?

I am a transformational teacher and author based in San Diego, California. I am a being just like you, the very same in essence. Born with an unstoppable yearning for Truth. Through an unwavering quest for the ultimate, I came to a profound realization. Of our infinite nature. You can too! Books played an important part in this quest, especially in the beginning. We are blessed with great teachers speaking to us across time and across dimensions through their words as they transmit their blessings for our enlightenment.

Suresh's book list on transformation for enlightenment

Suresh Ramaswamy Why did Suresh love this book?

This treatise is no ordinary commentary on the sacred Bhagavad Gita. Every page in this two-volume set is loaded with spiritual wisdom! Each time I dip into it, I emerge with clarity and upliftment. 

Paramahansa Yogananda put himself in a state of attunement with the originators of this sacred text as he wrote this commentary. The result is unparalleled insights into the yogic path and practical wisdom for higher consciousness. Easily the best writing on the Gita I have come across.

By Paramahansa Yogananda,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked God Talks with Arjuna as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Bhagavad Gita is India's most sacred text - the 'Hindu' Bible. Yogananda's translation and commentary brings a unique and deeply penetrating insight into this great scripture, which is widely regarded as one of the most comprehensive books available on the science and philosophy of Yoga. God Talks With Arjuna explains the Bhagavad Gita's profoundest spiritual, psychological, and metaphysical truths, long obscured by metaphor and allegory. Yogananda takes Lord Krishna's counsel to the warrior Arjuna and applies it to our everyday struggles with the human ego. Our greatest battle he explains, like Arjuna's, takes place within our own minds as…


Book cover of Gita on the Green: The Mystical Tradition Behind Bagger Vance

Jayne Storey Author Of Connected Golf: Bridging the Gap between Practice and Performance

From my list on mind-body golf.

Who am I?

I’ve been fascinated by the link between golf and the Eastern arts since I heard the great Jack Nicklaus say that golf is played with the feet. This immediately struck a chord with me as my background spans over thirty years of Tai Chi training and I have understood from this art that all movement comes from the ground upwards. The early training of Nicklaus in fact echoes that of the ancient warriors who understood the link between intention and action, which is a very different approach to the modern way of over-thinking technique. The simplicity of flow cancels out the need to separate the golf swing into individual positions. 

Jayne's book list on mind-body golf

Jayne Storey Why did Jayne love this book?

I have always been interested in Vedic philosophy and have greatly enjoyed the film The Legend of Bagger Vance. While there has been much watering down of ancient truths to fit with our 21st Century lifestyle (the plethora of mindfulness apps being one example) the author of this book has a depth of literary and spiritual knowledge that helps unlock the mysteries of golf and allies them with the epic tale, The Bhagavad Gita. Rosen explains that Rannulph Junuh, (played by Matt Damon in the film) is really Arjuna, the charioteer who is instructed by the Supreme Being, Bhagavan (Bagger Vance, the caddie played by Will Smith). It is an approach to the game that brings us face to face with the eternal battles within and how to overcome them. 

By Steven J Rosen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Gita on the Green as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1995, Steven Pressfield decided to introduce the Bhagavad-Gita to a contemporary audience, so he restructured the Gita in terms of a golf novel, The Legend of Bagger Vance. Now a major motion picture directed by Robert Redford and starring Matt Damon and Will Smith, The Legend of Bagger Vance is loosely based on the ancient Hindu epic, The Bhagavad-gita. Steven Rosen, in Gita on the Green: The Mystical Tradition Behind Bagger Vance, draws the story out further using some thirty years of Gita scholarship and a writing style that is both eloquent and thorough.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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