hygienic darkroom retreat

profound rest for the self‑healing psyche

by andrew durham


five cranial supernovas

These are the most important books and authors I have ever read. Each has blown my mind, changed my life, and deeply informed and influenced my methods and thinking since I first read it.

Book Author Published First Read
Atlas Shrugged Ayn Rand 1957 1990
The Continuum Concept Jean Liedloff 1975 1990
Ishmael Daniel Quinn 1992 2000
In Search of the Miraculous P D Ouspensky 1947 2005
The 80/10/10 Diet Douglas Graham 2006 2008

I read and liked nearly everything else by Rand, Liedloff, and Quinn. Ouspensky’s other books don’t attract me. I have just started to study Graham, whose crystalline book on diet I have sought for over 20 years.

An honorable mention as a highly catalytic book that came at a critical moment in late 2006 is Introduction to Human Technology by William Arthur Evans.

The book that concretely sums up for me the diabolical process of this culture, while enabling me to finally wash my hands of trying to remediate it, is John Perkins’ Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.

There are also few other books that really affected me when I was first reading things on my own, starting at age 15. They prepared me for the books above. They are so close to me, it is hard to assess their monumentality, their greatness. Also, they are so central to my thinking, it is hard to objectify them, to separate them from my perspective as I have done in the above list. They are:

Summerhill -A S Neill
Magical Child Matures -Joseph Chilton Pearce
The Songlines -Bruce Chatwin

Even earlier books, which came to me through my family, were:
The Natural House. -Frank Lloyd Wright
Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah -Richard Bach
The Prophet -Khalil Gibran The Dark is Rising - Susan Cooper
Farmer Boy - Laura Ingalls Wilder
James and the Giant Peach, Danny the Champion of the World, The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six Others - Roald Dahl

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