Reading List

 

Below you’ll find a spattering of books that I’d call favorites or thought forming for me. No book here dictates my politics, world views, or religion, they’re all simply sources of information I use to form my own thoughts. Pairing Darwin and Dawkins with ‘Knowing God’, and C.S. Lewis’ ‘The Great Divorce’, makes for interesting thought and introspection.

The phrase ‘knowledge is power’ gets thrown around so often that it loses it’s meaning. That is sad. The power of a book is that unlike video it forces your imagination to draw the pictures, to formulate the ideas, to work. The beauty of a book is that it offers thoughts, ideas, and information that you may freely accept, or leave right on the pages where you found it.

The following are either books I’ve read or purchased and are simply waiting to be devoured. Define the Cloud is an Amazon affiliate, so purchasing using these links supports the site.

 

Science and Math

You probably talk about evolution, maybe even use the word with your buzzwords. Have you actually read the book?

‘On the Origin of the Species’ – Charles Darwin

https://amzn.to/2OKq4N7

‘Lost in Math: How Beauty Leads Physics Astray’ – Sabine Hossenfelder

https://amzn.to/2ThhJUt

‘The Future of Life’ – Edward O. Wilson

https://amzn.to/2PyCXPi

‘The Gene: An Intimate History’ – Siddhartha Mukherjee

https://amzn.to/2DFij9W

‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind’ – Yuval Noah Harari

https://amzn.to/2RVdBbe

 

Religion

Religion has always been an interest and passion of mine. I’m drawn to both the differences, and infinite parallels between major religions. Most of my study has been with ‘Western Religions’, and I’m now beginning to dive into the ‘east’.

 

‘Knowing God’ – J. I. Packer

https://amzn.to/2PudjeN

‘The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe without Design’ –  Richard Dawkins

https://amzn.to/2DHiFNq

I chose the following edition from the various options for its accuracy and readability. In my research it appears to be the closest English version of the original Greek intent. This is of course very arguable.

‘New American Standard Bible’

https://amzn.to/2DF4BnL

No study of Christianity is complete without a look at ‘The Old Testament.’ Combine these books with the Jewish Torah to get a few different perspectives and solid background.

‘The IVP Bible Background Commentary: Old Testament’ https://amzn.to/2DtiKn9

‘The Old Testament’ https://amzn.to/2DKiiSr

While I’ve read the Torah, I’ve yet to study with a Jewish practitioner who speaks Hebrew. I feel that is a necessity for any real understanding, and its on my to-do list.

‘The Torah’ https://amzn.to/2Dq2lQg

The following is my choice for an English version of the Qur’an. Again, this is a subjective decision. What I’ve found when studying Islam is that it’s best to study alongside a practicing Muslim, and native Arabic speaker.

My study started with a friend and co-worker when I was 16. His father was the caretaker for one of the largest Mosques on the east coast. We would sit in the library of the Mosque and study various religions from the vast variety of books housed there.

‘The Holy Qur’an: Explanatory English Translation’

https://amzn.to/2Dr0OJO

How the Mind Works

The mind is an interesting place. Much of the way we assume we work is far from the truth. These books have given me a better understanding of just how odd our big brains are.

 

‘Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies’ – Nick Bostrom

https://amzn.to/2DpERuq

‘The Sober Truth: Debunking the Bad Science Behind 12-Step Programs and the Rehab Industry’ – Lance Dodes

https://amzn.to/2Dr3s2c

Business and Leadership

If you choose to lead or run a business, you must never stop learning. Any information is good information, it’s your choice how you use it. I’ve found that reading a single book and following it whole-heartedly is a path to failure. Rare is the advice that has universal applicability.

 

It doesn’t matter what you do, selling is key to the success of it. Selling ideas, companies, products, or yourself (as in promotion/salary conversations.)

‘Sell or be Sold’ – Grant Cardone

https://grantcardone.idevaffiliate.com/idevaffiliate.php?id=1892&url=1848

‘The Closer’s Survival Guide’ – Grant Cardone

https://grantcardone.idevaffiliate.com/idevaffiliate.php?id=1892&url=1857

 

A fantastic look at how companies and leaders inspire.

‘Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action’ – Simon Sinek

https://amzn.to/2Bb8s9n

I formerly worked at World Wide Technology, WWT. It was by far the best company I’ve ever worked for. It’s founder Dave Steward wrote this book, I attribute much of WWT’s fantastic culture to it.

‘Doing Business by the Good book: Fifty-Two Lessons on Success Straight from the Bible’ – Dave Steward

https://amzn.to/2ONsOcq

‘Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most’ – Douglas Stone

https://amzn.to/2TmtCsv

‘Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In’ – Roger Fisher

https://amzn.to/2ORS81a

‘Digital Vortex’ – Jeff Loucks

https://amzn.to/2qOtnJl

‘The Innovators Dilemma’ – Clayton M. Christensen

https://amzn.to/2TilAAK

 

History and Law

The US Declaration of Independence, stop quoting it and go read it.

 

Self-Improvement

The 10X Rule -Grant Cardone

https://grantcardone.idevaffiliate.com/idevaffiliate.php?id=1892&url=1855

A great quick read. Take in the four agreements and simply work to incorporate them daily. The 4th agreement is the key to success with the first three.

The Four Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz

https://amzn.to/2TkpfOi

‘Be Obsessed or be Average’ – Grant Cardone

https://grantcardone.idevaffiliate.com/idevaffiliate.php?id=1892&url=1939

Fiction

I spent many years considering fiction to be a waste of my time. I’ve come to understand that thought was a partial waste of those years. Fiction sparks new thought, teaches lessons in story form, and draws you away from the daily grind giving your mind space to imagine.

 

One of my favorite humans and authors is Dr. Seuss. His whimsical stories, and beautifully silly artwork told an underlying story of conservation that was way ahead of its time. Pick up any of his books, but start here.

‘The Lorax’ – Dr. Seuss

https://amzn.to/2OMzhnW

One of my favorites from childhood. A series I read again as an adult and loved as much or more than the first time.

‘The Chronicles of Narnia’ – C.S. Lewis

https://amzn.to/2ThC2Bf

The Chronicles led me to another book by C.S. Lewis that is on my to read list.

‘The Great Divorce’ – C.S. Lewis

https://amzn.to/2TiQLMf

‘The Book of Lost Things; – John Connolly

https://amzn.to/2Do0T0O

‘Dune’ – Frank Herbert

https://amzn.to/2Dpwyih

‘Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell’ – Susanna Clarke

https://amzn.to/2Px6Xez

‘Bleak House’ – Charles Dickens

https://amzn.to/2qOEkLf