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The Ishmael Network Reading List

    These resources are suggested by readers. Ishmael Network members can add their suggested readings by logging into their record here... Please note that this list is neither compiled nor reviewed by Daniel Quinn. It should not be assumed, therefore, that he either endorses these books or agrees with the comments made about them. This statement holds true for the Ishmael Webmaster as well.... As of Wednesday, December 12, 2018 there are 880 books in the suggested reading list. Here is an easy to print list of everything...)

    View by first letter of the title:
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    Go to records:
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    Previous 50 Records

  • When God Was a Woman by Merlin Stone has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Zoe Zuniga...and Zoe has this to say about the book: "With the rise of patriarchal religions the female deities where consistently swept away over and over but they kept stubbornly cropping back up! This "male" perspective has had much to do with the dominator or taker model. only by keeping the feminine side of ourselves powerless can we keep destroying."
    Check out and/or Order When God Was a Woman from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • When God Was a Woman by Merlin Stone has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Thom Parrott-Sheffer...and Thom has this to say about the book: "This book is a good companion piece to explore the rise of "Taker" cultures over "Leavers." It also explores the arena of the culture's attitude toward the divine and the relationship with Creation and Creator."
    Check out and/or Order When God Was a Woman from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • When Religion Becomes Evil by Charles Kimball has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Terril Tompkins...and Terril has this to say about the book: "This author/scholar presents a clear, realistic and objective summary of the "evil" side of the world's major religions without condemning religion itself. A must read for those who want to gain a clear understanding of what is going on in Mother Culture and in the Middle East in particular. An eye-opening world view that seems to relate distinctly to DQ's maxim: "There is no one right way to live.""
    Check out and/or Order When Religion Becomes Evil from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • When the Drummers Were Women by Layne Redmond has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Alan Willard...and Alan has this to say about the book: "It is a discription of an alturnative pre-historic culture or point of view"
    Check out and/or Order When the Drummers Were Women from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life by Jon Kabat-Zinn has been suggested by Ishmael Network member keith gliesman...and keith has this to say about the book: "An introductory guide to meditation and relaxation."
    Check out and/or Order Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Which Way for the Ecology Movement by Murray Bookchin has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Shehzad Nadeem...and Shehzad has this to say about the book: "Murray Bookchin, founder of Social Ecology and an anarchist, refutes the alarmist arguments of population explosions advanced by neo-malthusians such as Quinn and Erhlich and also offers a scathing critique of "deep ecology's" misanthropic character. Plus he publishes through an independent publisher (AK Press) rather than major corporations like many so-called "ecologists"!"
    Check out and/or Order Which Way for the Ecology Movement from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • White Noise by Don DeLillo has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Jennifer Small...and Jennifer has this to say about the book: "DeLillo, in a way different that Quinn, points out how man has found a way to destroy itself. It also points out some of the escapist attitudes that people develop in order to escape our culture."
    Check out and/or Order White Noise from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Why Big Fierce Creatures Are Rare by Paul Colinvaux has been suggested by Ishmael Network member eric schori-bragg...and eric has this to say about the book: "Ishmael mentions that nothing he talks about would particularly surprise anyone who studies living organisms. This book dramatically illustrates this point(it was published in 1977). It is astonishingly similar to parts of Ishmael and it is also a fascinating and readable book about ecology in general."
    Check out and/or Order Why Big Fierce Creatures Are Rare from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Why Nations Fail by Daron Acemoglu has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Robert Masding...and Robert has this to say about the book: "The concept of elites promoting extractive cultures which are destructive, as opposed to successful societies having inclusive systems are complementary to Daniel's Takers and Leavers concepts. The book has numerous historical examples."
    Check out and/or Order Why Nations Fail from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Why People Believe Weird Things : Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time by Michael Shermer has been suggested by Ishmael Network member John Willis...and John has this to say about the book: "This interesting book takes aim at many of the world strange beliefs and exposes them for what they are, fraudulent beliefs based on superstition rather than rational thought."
    Check out and/or Order Why People Believe Weird Things : Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time by Michael Shermer has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Alvaro Cordova...and Alvaro has this to say about the book: "This book deals with the philosophy of science. It deals with superstitions and the like and I believe it ties in nicely to the idea that the more educated we are about reality the easier it will be to dispel the current mythology"
    Check out and/or Order Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Wild At Heart by John Eldredge has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Court Donner...and Court has this to say about the book: "Whether or not God exists doesn't change how things are, and so in this way I regard religion as take-it-or-leave-it. I think many of the books recommended here take the leave-it path. Wild At Heart goes the take-it route, and yet is a fascinating book. Even if you'd prefer not to read about a Christian perspective, you can just skip to the next paragraph and find yourself reading ideas that don't sound too off-the-mark. WAH essentially provides an argument for trusting our instincts, for moving forward without a plan (and, similar to Quinn, argues that formulating a plan tends to be counter-productive)."
    Check out and/or Order Wild At Heart from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Wisdom from a Rainforest by Stuart Schlegel has been suggested by Ishmael Network member B. J. Kempner...and B. J. has this to say about the book: "A penetrating study of a society based on partnership rather than competition, Wisdom from a Rainforest also follows the spiritual odyssey of the author, anthropologist Stuart Schlegel. Schlegel spent two years living with the Teduray, a forest tribe in the Philippines. What he learned from them made him reexamine everything he assumed about Western culture and the so-called "verities" og human behavior. Tragically, horribly, the Teduray were massacred by bandits in the early 1970s, but Schlegel has preserved their example and their message, which is more urgently needed than ever. A brave, heartbreaking, inspiring and important work."
    Check out and/or Order Wisdom from a Rainforest from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Wisdom of the Elders by PeterKnudtson DavidSuzuki has been suggested by Ishmael Network member nomad sunago...and nomad has this to say about the book: "This book presents a synthesis of wisdom which combines indigenous culture and modern science. I'll quote from the back of the book: "Here are tales of profound human empathy with and respect for animals, landscapes, plants and natural forces vital to our survival. Each selection conveys a wonderful sense of the diversity and unity of indigenous peoples' intellectual and experiential insights into the workings of nature. Valuable in their own right, these vignettes also provide the foundations for a new global environmental ehtic. [new paragraph] Most important of all for the shared future of our planet, these 'sacred ecologies', when juxtaposed with the ideas of some of the wisest and most respected scientists of our time--Albert Einstein, Alan Guth, Santiago Ramon y Cajal, Loren Eisley, Paul Erlich and many more--hold much in common with aspects of modern science.""
    Check out and/or Order Wisdom of the Elders from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Wolf and Iron by Gordon R. Dickson has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Pax Rolfe...and Pax has this to say about the book: "It is a fiction that relates a collapse of society and one man's struggle, with the help of a wolf, to survive after the collapse. An intellegent, thouroughly researched read."
    Check out and/or Order Wolf and Iron from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Gus Steeves...and Gus has this to say about the book: "Ah, so many things I could say about this book! In summary: Connie, a poor "insane" Chicana from NYC, finds herself mentally receiving communication, both in and out of a brutal "asylum where there isn't any," from a VERY Leaver society in 2137. They need her help. I won't go into why; read it. Piercy's depiction of their society should give us all kinds of ideas for what to do and show us just how mentally ill our society now is. A few points re: the difference: Connie realizes that our life has "a veneer of polite refusal to admit seeing" things like age, illness, etc; they see our time as "tragic and blind." She can't understand why nobody's in a hurry, why people only work 16 hrs a MONTH, why sex is so open, why death is casual, why people touch so much, why nobody has final decision-making power. Yet all is NOT perfect..."
    Check out and/or Order Woman on the Edge of Time from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History by Stephen Jay Gould has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Jonathan Cohen...and Jonathan has this to say about the book: "How some 530 million-year-old fossils from Canada may threaten the last major pillar of Taker culture."
    Check out and/or Order Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Word Virus: The William S. Burroughs Reader by James Grauerholz, editor has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Bob Coleman...and Bob has this to say about the book: "Burroughs is a brilliant satirist, an experimental artist, a misunderstood genius, and a reformer whose books punch a hole in the Big Lie of Mother Culture. He attempts to blow up this cozy conspiracy and allow us to see the truth. He writes that in the beginning (of recorded history only) was the (written) word, a truism. And the word is a virus, the question being: Does the mind control the parasitic virus, or Does the virus control the host mind? He presents the Reality Studio, Reality Set, and Reality Film as a soft machine for Mother Culture to control her often unaware but restive charges yearning to be free and connect with others in spirit. He imagined a new kind of currency, underwritten not by gold or silver but by moral virtues and mental achievements. He wrote in his journal the day before he died, "What there is. Love.""
    Check out and/or Order Word Virus: The William S. Burroughs Reader from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Workin' on the Chain Gang : Shaking Off the Dead Hand of History by Walter Mosley has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Bert Stammerjohan...and Bert has this to say about the book: "Another point of view by one of my favorite authors"
    Check out and/or Order Workin' on the Chain Gang : Shaking Off the Dead Hand of History from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Writings on an Ethical Life by Peter Singer has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Lynne Reinecke...and Lynne has this to say about the book: "Simply put, this book will keep you thinking. The author does not ask for total agreement with his ideas but demands thoughtful questioning."
    Check out and/or Order Writings on an Ethical Life from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • You Are a Spiritual Being Having a Human Experience by Bob Frissell has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Mark Davern...and Mark has this to say about the book: "How to effectively manage a change to higher-levels of reality"
    Check out and/or Order You Are a Spiritual Being Having a Human Experience from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Your Money Or Your Life by Joe/Vicky Dominguez/Robin has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Bert Stammerjohan...and Bert has this to say about the book: "This book is one avenue to answering the question "Where do we go from here". "
    Check out and/or Order Your Money Or Your Life from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Mark Meritt...and Mark has this to say about the book: "An excellent look at how material frugality, which has nothing at all to do with material poverty, and increased personal fulfillment go hand in hand. The ideas on investments are too simplistic, but most of the book resonates strongly with sustainable paradigms."
    Check out and/or Order Your Money or Your Life: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Ramey Wood...and Ramey has this to say about the book: "The most direct relation is how this text brought forth many of the latent ideas, frustrations and perspectives I (have) had. The personal exploration that ZAMM and ISHMAEL (ETC.) has allowed/encouraged for me continues to be significant. What I expect to get from this book everytime I read it is to struggle with 'reality' some more, to ponder what what one sees and how that is interpreted in the daily living and choices one makes, etc. Digest it with your own saliva. Find your voice with it."
    Check out and/or Order Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Julie Zydek...and Julie has this to say about the book: "In order to change the way we live, we must change the way people think of things. We cannot enforce a new system upon people or else they won't appreciate it whole-heartedly. We cannot rebel because that never got anybody anywhere. This book influences people to think more about things that they never noticed before (like DQ did with his books). Being more spiritual, this book can change peoples' minds for a difference, that can maybe make a difference on our humanity."
    Check out and/or Order Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Chris Lovell...and Chris has this to say about the book: "Robert Pirsig takes the reader on a journey. He explores the development of our cultural mythology, beginning with the Ancient Greeks (Aristotle, Plato, Socrates...). He sees that somewhere along the way there was a 'turning point' in the way we think. From that moment onwards we began placing 'reason' above 'value'. 'Reasonable' thought became the prerequisite for action rather than quality, value or feeling. Things that could not be explained through intellect, through reason began to take a backseat as an impetus for action. I think that Pirsig captures (though unwittingly) an important aspect of the cultural trasformation that Alan Lomax calls the 'agricultural revolution'. It was a revolution in thought aswell as in action where we began placing reason above intuition, logic above respect: a time when humans began thinking it was up to them to decide what was and was not reasonable for the earth rather than leaving these kind of decisions to nature, to the gods, to intuitive feelings, or to whatever you'd like to call it."
    Check out and/or Order Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenence by Robert M. Pirsig has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Jamie Zacharias...and Jamie has this to say about the book: "This book opens a whole new door to a different outlook on life. I read this book before I read Ishmael but I believe both authors try to portray the same type of message. A book about a father and son relationship and a man and motorcycle relationship, in which the maintenence of a motorcycle compares to the very culture and attitude of humans."
    Check out and/or Order Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenence from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenence: An Inquiry Into Values by Robert Pirsig has been suggested by Ishmael Network member George Gilman...and George has this to say about the book: "I was suprised not to find this book already on the list as it has moved many people to examine the underpinnings of our modern world in the same powerful fashion as the "Ishmael" books. It's similar to Quinn's work, in that it's obstensively a novel, but uses the format to plumb the historical and philosophical depths of our shared culture. Pirsig does a fabulous job of examining "How things came to be this way" by looking at how the Taker culture "came to think this way". He points out the many pitfalls we fall victim to when we rely so heavily on our "rational" approach to seeing the world as it is. He outlines with remarkable clarity how science is no better equipped to uncover truth than it's supposed competitors. The reader is moved to examine our shared obsession with the elusive search for "what is true" and be more concerned with discerning "what is good". Anyone concerned with putting a different story in action would be well served by the understandings of our current story this book provides."
    Check out and/or Order Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenence: An Inquiry Into Values from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zen Physics by David Darling has been suggested by Ishmael Network member William Rosebrook...and William has this to say about the book: "This book helps to open your eyes to death and the possibilities afterwards, much the same way Daniel Quinn's books help to open your mind to human culture and its possible developments. The book is filled with facts and a holistic vision."
    Check out and/or Order Zen Physics from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

  • Zorba the Greek by Nikos Kazantzakis has been suggested by Ishmael Network member Alex Bien...and Alex has this to say about the book: "Zorba lives with a zest for LIFE. He sees everything as if with new eyes. A very entertaining, inspiring and important read. "
    Check out and/or Order Zorba the Greek from Amazon.com! You can also order from a local bookstore by using BookSense.

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