TED Conversations

David Levine

Research Scientist, University of Tennessee


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What book have you read that everyone should read and why?

Many books have a profound effect on us and stay with us for the rest of our lives. Help us all to discover this new gem that we may not have found!

For example "The Giving Tree" for its lessons on unconditional love and selflessness


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    Jan 12 2014: /
    Hey David Levine
    What would I recommend to everyone?

    Everyone? I have a big ego, I do, but I can't see recommending anything I've read to 7 billion strangers speaking perhaps 5000 or so languages. I still want to humor you because I got hooked on your question.

    I read a lot and reread a lot, so this is a tough puzzle. I return and urge others to think about global issues like the existential questions of global warming and the current mass extinction episode number 6.

    OK. Now I just might come back to haunt you each of the days this conversation is open, but for now I flip for it, land on my head, and choose "New Self New World" by Philip Shepherd.

    It's kind of like recommending an "in body" experience of living life as a fully present aware person. No religion. No magic. A kind of well being that is waiting for you. It's almost Hindu like a practice of yoga for everyday living.

    So, if you're interested in being awake and aware and living in the present, it's nice.

    I constantly try to address global warming and the "anthropocene" effect and I find that people are caught up in future tense preoccupations and past tense preoccupations, and mental guilt and busy work, and they don't have time to think about that which is most important and most consequential in the long run.

    Now whatcha gonna do with all these suggestions??
    Just curious.

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      Jan 12 2014: Well Mark, like a lot of other bibliophiles I belong to book clubs, read reviews, and love to hear what books are touching people. I'm hoping 3 or 4 on this list that I haven't read are gems! I hadn't expected the heartfelt responses in this thread. Just reading some of the posts are really assuring me that there are a lot of kindred spirits out there that find magic in books in this electronic age. I have to confess the Patriots game is on right now though. But I'll be back in a book afterwards!

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