Philosophy Books

Books to Read

Philosophy BooksThe courses in Practical Philosophy are not book based, there is no pre or during course reading necessary. However, food for the mind in the form of good literature can be quite inspiring to many people for many reasons. So here are a few recommendations you may enjoy.

To purchase books written by students of the school worldwide click here

The list below gives the book title, author and publisher.

  • Advaita Vedanta by Swami Vivekananda. Ramakrishna
  • Aesop’s Fables by Aesop. Penguin
  • Aesthetics by Sheppard. O.U.P
  • Ageless Body, Timeless Mind by Chopra. Random House
  • Alfred the Great by Keynes. Penguin
  • All the World’s a Stage by Boux. Shepheard-Walwyn
  • Art of Loving by Fromm. Harper Collins
  • As a Man Thinketh by Allen. Fowler
  • As a Woman Thinketh by Hulst. Fowler
  • Ashtavakra Gita by Shastri (trans.). Shanti Sadan
  • Awareness by De Mello. Harper Collins
  • Ayurveda by Svoboda. Penguin
  • Be As You Are by Maharshi. Penguin
  • Being Oneself by School of Meditation. S.o.M
  • Bhagavad Gita by Shastri (trans.). Samata
  • Bible. Harper Collins
  • Brief History of Time by Hawkings. Bantam
  • Cloud of Unknowing by Wolters (ed.). Penguin
  • Complete works of Shakespeare by Shakespeare. O.U.P
  • Conference of the Birds by Attar. Penguin
  • Confessions by St. Augustine. Penguin
  • Consider England by Proud and Petts. Shepheard-Walwyn
  • Conversations of Socrates by Xenophon. Penguin
  • Crest Jewel of Discrimination by Sankara. Ramakrishna
  • Dhammapada by Easwaran. Penguin
  • Dibs in Search of Self by Axlinc. Penguin
  • Divine Proportion by Huntley. Dover
  • Eight Upanishads (Vol. 1 and Vol. 2) by Swami Gambhirananda. Advaita Ashram
  • Emperor’s New Mind by Penrose. Random House
  • Eternal Wisdom by Aurobindo. Ashram
  • Four Quarters by Eliot. Faber & Faber
  • Geeta by Sri Purohit Swami. Faber & Faber
  • God and the New Physics by Davies. Penguin
  • God Makes the Rivers Flow by Easwaran. Nilgiri Press
  • The Golden Thread by Boux. Shepheard-Walwyn
  • Good Company by Shantanand Saraswati. Element OP
  • Gospel according to Thomas by Brill
  • Guide for the Perplexed by Schumacher. Random House
  • Guide for the Advanced Soul by Hayward. Ashgrove
  • Heart of the Enlightened by De Mello. Harper Collins
  • Heart of the Hunter by Van der Post. Penguin
  • I am That by Nisargadatta Maharaja. Chetana
  • Imitation of Christ by Kempis. Hodder
  • In Search of the Miraculous by Ouspensky. Penguin
  • In Tune with the Infinite by Trine. Harper Collins
  • Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Bach. Harper Collins
  • Leonardo Drawings by Da Vinci. Dover
  • Letters of Marsilio Ficino. Volumes 1 to 9. by SES (trans.). Shepheard-Walwyn
  • Little Prince by De Saint Exupery. Mammoth
  • Mahabharata by Rajagopalachari. Ramakrishna
  • Man Who Wanted to Meet God by Shantanand Saraswati. Element
  • Marriage of East & West by Griffiths. Harper Collins.
  • Meditations of Marcus Aurelius by M. Aurelius. Penguin
  • Mister God this is Anna by Fynn. Harper Collins
  • Mozart Letters by Mozart. Dover
  • 1791 – Mozart’s Last Year by Robbins-Landon. Harper Collins
  • Nature of Society by MacLaren. SES
  • Oxford Book of Short Poems by Kavanagh (ed.). O.U.P.
  • Philosophy as a way of life: Spiritual exercises from Socrates to Foucault by Pierre Hadot and Arnold Davidson. Wiley-Blackwell
  • Philosophy for Life and Other Dangerous Situations by Jules Evans. Rider Books
  • Pooh & the Philosophers by Williams. Methuen
  • Prophet by Gibran. Manderin
  • Quantum Healing by Chopra. Bantam
  • Quantum Questions by Wilber (ed.). Shambhala
  • Quiet Mind (miniature and large format) by White Eagle. Fowler
  • Ramayana by Rajagopalachari. Ramakrishna
  • Revelations of Divine Love by Julian of Norwich. Penguin
  • Republic by Plato. Penguin
  • Pilgrims Progress by Bunyan. Penguin
  • Portable Plato by Plato. Penguin
  • Sacred Geometry by Lawlor. Thames & Hudson
  • Screwtape Letters by Lewis. Harper Collins
  • Self Reliance by Emerson. Dover
  • Sermon on the Mount acc. to Vedanta by Swami Prabhavananda. Ramakrishna
  • Siddhartha by Hesse. Pan
  • Sonnets by Shakespeare. Dover or Jarrold or R.S.C. edition, Shepheard-Walwyn
  • Sophie’s World by Gaarder. Phoenix
  • Srimad Bhagavatam by Rajagopalachari. Ramakrishna
  • Symposium & Phaedrus by Plato. Dover
  • Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu. Penguin
  • Te of Piglet by Hoff. Mandarin
  • Ten Principal Upanishads by Yeats & Purohit Swami. Faber & Faber
  • Touching the Void by Simpson. Pan
  • Tao of Pooh by Hoff. Mandarin
  • Trial & Death of Socrates by Plato. Dover
  • Truth Will Set You Free. Swami Puma. Element
  • Understanding Music by Hopkins. Orion
  • Voyage of Discovery by Rolls. Study Society
  • Way of the Sufi by Shah. Penguin
  • Wisdom of Insecurity by Watts. Random House
  • World within the Mind by Shastri (trans.). Shanti Sadan
  • Zen Flesh Zen Bones by Reps. Penguin
  • Zen in the Art of Archery by Herrigel. Penguin


To find out more about our Practical Philosophy courses in Birmingham click here.

To purchase books written by students of the school worldwide click here.

Philosophy for Life book review

Philosophy for Life and other Dangerous Situations – book review

Philosophy for Life and other Dangerous Situations by Jules Evans

About the Author:

Philosophy for Life - Jules Evans - book reviewJules Evans writes for various high profile publications, gives talks, runs workshops and is part of the Well-Being Project based in London.: Whilst at University , anxiety, panic attacks and mood swings slowly got worse and after 5 years of fear and confusion, he started to research and find ways of how to get better.

About the Book

Jules Evans is fascinated by how ancient philosophy saved his life, and how we can all use it to become happier, wiser and more resilient. In his research Jules discovers that the ancient Greeks knew a thing or two about how to live, how to engage with society, how to govern our emotions and how by using ancient philosophy to withstand crises, overcome adversity and build better lives. Culminating in that happiness is not just pleasant feelings… it’s the joy that comes from fulfilling what is the highest and best in our nature.

Jules imagines a dream school, which includes 12 of the greatest and most colourful thinkers.

Each of these ancient philosophers teaches a technique we can use to transform ourselves and live better lives. These practical techniques are illustrated by the extraordinary stories of real people who are using them today and which have become a way of life, a love of wisdom, not just theory. He meets the founder of CBT (Cognitive Behavioural therapy) discovers and interviews philosophical communities all over the world that are dedicated to “Well Being” for all. Alongside exploring the challenges of trying to build strong ethical communities and questioning how governments try to guide their citizens towards happiness and fulfilment. The book is a force for Well being, finding the balance between the Greeks idea of the Good life and respecting people’s right to ask questions and choose how to live, focusing on not just the individual but opening and broadening our minds, connecting us to society, science, culture and the cosmos.

Inspirational….well worth a read

Review by Ann Howden