There are so many resources at our finger-tips – on-line, around your neighborhood or in the deep well of your own imagination. Maybe you’ll find inspiration in a walk around the block – or at a book-store, a local art gallery, a theater, just making stuff, or hanging out with your dog. Maybe for you it’s meditating, cooking, listening to music, a trip through a fabulous hardware store, a bus ride - or a cup of tea with a buddy. The point is inspiration is all around us – all the time.


There are a whole host of bibliographies, reviews, lists of important places, books, films and resources of all sorts. This is my personal list of current favorites. I’ll update it from time to time. I’d be delighted to hear from you (and share with our readers) about the sources you find most powerful.











 The Relaxation Response: HarperCollins Publishers, 2000.

   Author: Herbert Benson, M.D.

   A “classic” by this Harvard professor of medicine who introduces his simple, effective, mind/body approach to relieving stress.


The Gifts of Imperfection - Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are: Hazelden Press, 2010

   Author: Brené Brown

   A treasure trove of work by this research professor and thought-leader on vulnerability, courage, worthiness and shame. Here, she shares 10    practical guideposts on the power of whole-hearted living


• Finite and Infinite Games: Ballantine Books, 2013

   Author: James P. Carse

   An extraordinary short read that adds a new pattern of knowledge to existing facts and assumptions.


• The Hero With a Thousand Faces: New World Library, Revised edition 2008

   Author: Joseph Campbell

   This seminal work of comparative mythology lays out the monomyth of the hero’s journey. It was noted by Time as one of the 100 best and    most influential books written in English since the magazine was founded in 1923.


• The Chemistry of Calm - A Powerful Drug-free Plan to Quiet Your Fears and Overcome Your Anxiety: Simon and Schuster, 2010

   Author Henry Emmons

   A feet-on-the-ground, easily accessible, totally common sense approach to dealing with fear and anxiety while living a full life.


• Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment: A Plume Book, 1992

   Author: George Leonard

   This is an excellent book on the process of learning to master something/anything.


• Free Play: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1990

   Author: Stephen Nachmanovitch

   A book filled with ways for readers to get in touch with their own creative abilities and possibilities.


• Seven Thousand Ways to Listen: 2012

   Author: Mark Nepo

   Presenting “listening” as the portal to everything, this moving exploration of self in relationship to others and the world is filled with practical    advice as well as inspiration.


• Saint Paul Almanac

   Editor: Kimberly Nightingale

   “A book, web-site and organization that creates opportunities for understanding, learning, and building relationships through sharing people's     stories.” You will find here a calendar of events, city guide, stories, news and much more.


• A Whole New Mind: Riverhead Books, 2006

   Author: Daniel Pink

   A timely look at six essential aptitudes that are in demand now: Design, Story, Symphony, Empathy, Play and Meaning.


• Kitchen Table Wisdom – Stories That Heal: Riverhead Books, 1996

   Author: Naomi Remen, M.D.

   Understanding that everyone is their own story, this author has crafted a radiant, powerful collection of stories that gives the reader an    intimate insight into what genuine healing is all about.


• How To Be An Explorer of the World: A Perigee Book, 2008

   Author: Keri Smith

   This book is a seemingly endless, certainly boundless array of activities, thoughts, observations and games for exploring your world.


• Spontaneous Happiness – A New Path to Emotional Well-Being: Little Brown and Company, New York . 2013

   Author: Andrew Weil, M.D.

   Integrative treatment strategies for life style behaviors that will enhance your emotional well-being. Good back-up research included.


• Creative Care - Directory of Twin Cities A + Healing Organizations: Forecast Public Art





• Instructions: William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, New York. 2010

   Author: Neil Gaiman

   “Trust your heart. Trust your dreams. Trust your story.” This is a delicious “children’s book” with an enormously powerful message

    for everyone.


• The Ocean at the End of the Lane: William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, New York. 2013

   Author: Neil Gaiman

   Mr. Gaiman makes the impossible completely possible in this adult tale of memory and magic, mystery and survival.


Farewell Dorothy Parker: The Penguin Group, New York. 2013

   Author: Ellen Meister

   “When it comes to movie reviews, critic Violet Epps is a powerhouse voice. But that’s only because she’s learned to channel her literary    hero Dorothy Parker, the most celebrated and scathing wit of the twentieth century. If only Violet could summon that kind of strength in

   her personal life.” This is a wonderful mysterious contemporary journey.


• The Night Circus: First Anchor Books, a division of Random House, New York, 2012

   Author: Erin Morgenstern

   This is a completely unique experience – both the book and the reading of the book. “The circus arrives without

   warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an    experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.”


• Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York. 2012

   Author: Robin Sloan

   I’m a sucker for anything set in a bookstore. This one has a wonderful contemporary twist, filled with secrets and surprises.


• The Goldfinch: Little, Brown and Company, New York. 2013

   Author: Donna Tartt

   Speaking to the heart as well as the mind – this jaw-dropping novel takes you into and on a journey with “unforgettably vivid characters,    mesmerizing language, and breathtaking suspense, while plumbing with a philosopher's calm the deepest mysteries of love, identity, and art. It    is a beautiful, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and    the ruthless machinations of fate.”


• The Testament of Mary: Scribner, a division of Simon and Schuster, Inc., New York. 2012

   Author: Colm Tóibín

   An extraordinary reimagined look at Christ’s mother, Mary as a solitary older woman still trying to understand the events that shaped her

   life – and the life of others for generations to come.


Creative Non-Fiction


• Faraway Nearby: Penguin Group, New York. 2013

   Author: Rebecca Solnit

   A stunning personal and lyrical book about the power of storytelling and the ways in which all of us are connected by empathy, narrative and    imagination.


• The Art of Possibility: Penguin Books, 2002

   Authors: Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander

   Wise and uplifting – it is a blend of inspiration, personal revelations and stories drawn from the worlds of music, psychology, business, art

   and politics.





• Guided Mindfulness Meditation (4 CD set): Sounds True – 2004

   Recorded With: Jon Kabat-Zinn

   The founder of the world-renowned Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical School effectively records ways of

   using meditation as a tool for dealing with stress, chronic pain and other illnesses.


Breathing-The Master Key to Self Healing: AudioBook – SelfHealing Series

   Recorded With: Andrew Weil, M.D.

   A powerful and easy-to-do course of 8 breathing exercises geared towards self-awareness, joy and healing.



• Becoming Well Within

   A very complete, primarily Twin Cities directory that connects health care consumers and care givers with local

   resources that specialize in integrated or complementary medicine and other resources to help them get healthy, stay well, accomplish daily    tasks, and remain balanced.


 Brain Pickings:

   Seven Life Lessons

   What is Creativity?


 Doing Nothing for Two Minutes

   Really – just see a lovely image and hear the waves for two minutes. A great break in a busy day.


• John Cleese on Creativity


 Taking Charge of Your

   Created by the Center for Spirituality and Healing and the Life Science Foundation, this web site offers accurate and credible information to    help individuals improve and maintain health including creating a healthy lifestyle, exploring alternative and integrative health practices, and

   navigating the healthcare system.


 TED Talks

   The Power of Vulnerability

   Creativity in Education


• Meditation Station

   You will find a lot of good information about meditation here and many meditations to try.





(There are so many fantastic places to eat in the Twin Cities – besides your own table. Here are my two new favorite discoveries.)


• Ward Six

   858 Payne Avenue, Saint Paul, MN



• The Buttered Tin

   237-7th Street East, Saint Paul, MN





• The Center for Spirituality and Healing:

   The Center provides high-quality interdisciplinary education, conducts research, and delivers innovative programs that advance integrative    health and healing.




Hennepin Gallery

  This city gallery located on the A-Level Government Center at 300 South Sixth Street in Minneapolis is part of the county’s commitment to   serving the community with a variety of fine arts and educational displays. These exhibits are presented free of charge and are open to the   public. The work often features the connection between arts and healing.


• Minneapolis Institute of Arts

  There is always a whole lot to experience at MIA. I think the temporary exhibit “Sacred” is especially wonderful. It runs through July 13th.

  On Saturdays in January and February they are hosting "Sacred Salons" in the gallery. Each of these is an introduction to a different

  "Sacred " way of knowing".

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