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The Books That Crossed My Path in India

the books that crossed my path

One of the things that played an important role on my recent trip to India (besides the amazing people I met there (but that’s a whole other post), were the amazing books that seemed to “cross my path” at just the right moment.

Whether running across them at local bookshops or receiving them for free from random travelers I met along the way, all 6 books seemed to have come into my life just as I needed to hear them most. The synchronicity of how it unfolded was incredible.

I found myself reading 4 or 5 books at a time (most of them I am still reading back home..) quickly jumping from one book to another in sort of a spiral form. It’s almost as if I came across enough information in one book to quickly prepare me for the next chapter in the next book, and then so on and so forth with the rest of them. By the time I went back to continue the first one, I was reading it from a whole new state of awareness, making it that much more clear to me as I read.

I couldn’t have planned it better if I tried.

So anyway, I strongly recommend any of the following books from my own personal experience. However, only you can know if and when the time is right for you. (Click the links to learn more about each one)

  • A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose: While buying this book at a Rishikesh bookshop, the owner told me how Eckhart Tolle had visited his shop a few years back and what an amazingly humble man he was. “There was just something about him that is hard to explain,” he said.
  • Who Cares?! The Unique Teaching of Ramesh S. Balsekar: I stumbled upon this book at a local coffee shop just as my mind was about to explode from all this new information. Instantly I understood that mentally analyzing everything to death (till death) was just not gonna cut it anymore.
  • Intimacy: Trusting Oneself and the Other: One of the most open and honest strangers I met on this trip suddenly offered me a copy of this book just when I needed to hear it most.
  • Siddhartha: A beautiful soul we met on the trip recommended this book to us, saying that she always keeps it with her inside her bag. This beautifully written novel seemed to combine all the insights that I have been stumbling upon lately into one intriguing story.
  • The Tenth Insight: Holding the VisionOn my last day in India, one of my neighbors dropped by my room to ask me if I wanted this book. Approximately 5 years after finishing “The Celestine Prophecy”, I guess I was finally ready…
  • Tomorrow’s God: Our Greatest Spiritual Challenge: This book literally  jumped out at me at another small bookshop in the area, just as I was questioning what my role was in the whole transformation taking place in the world. Strangely, one of the first words I noticed in the book read:

    Do you think this is happening by chance?

    This is not. There is no such thing as chance. The universe does nothing by accident. This book has come to you to tell you that you can change the course of human history.


    Not only the people who run governments or own corporations or lead movements or write books or are influential for some other reason. Not only those people.


    You can change the course of human history.

    This is not an exaggeration. Please believe me. This is not an exaggeration.

The Ones That Leave a Mark

I was up the other night, thinking about my life, my writing and what was holding me back.. when all of a sudden I stumbled across an old book report I had written back in high school on the Catcher in the Rye, graded by the most influential teacher I ever had in my life: Mr. George R. Blouin.

While looking over the paper, I instantly remembered our English class reading through The Catcher in the Rye together, and how Mr. Blouin he had pushed and pushed us to understand J.D. Salinger’s brilliant and touching interpretation of what it was really like growing up in today’s world.

Mr. Blouin spoke about the story with passion, challenging us lost kids to face our own phoniness and sarcasm through the eyes of the controversial protagonist, Holden. He would write on the board so fast, and with so much intensity, that usually I could barely make out most of his handwriting.

But it didn’t matter – he was getting the message across.

And when the smart-asses in the class didn’t quite ‘get it’, Mr. Blouin would climb on top of his desk to avoid “all the bullshit that was filling up the room”.

That was Mr. Blouin for you. He was just one of those teachers that was so respected, by so many students, over so many years, that he could pretty much get away with anything and no one would ever say a word. It was an unspoken law.

He was a man that told us the truth and pushed us to think for ourselves. He was the kind of teacher that would literally get furious with you if he felt you were not living up to your potential. He was a man that truly cared about his students’ lives, and it didn’t matter to him that he’d given those same exact speeches and introductions to generations of kids before us. He did it again and with the same passion.

So you can imagine why his comments and advice always meant the world to me.

And that night, in the midst of my writer’s block, Mr. Blouin had returned, through this lost and forgotten book report, to offer his words of wisdom once again.

I understand that I came across his words for a reason. I understand that it was meant to be.

What I still don’t understand, ironically enough, is his handwriting:

George Blouin - Catcher in the Rye