This month exercise, fermentation, capitalism, and more in the spotlight.
1/ Daniel Lieberman – Exercised
This is a wonderful book. Daniel Lieberman is a Professor of Biological Science at Harvard University. He explores exercise from an evolutionary perspective – within the first few chapters you learn that we’re not really wired for triathlons and treadmills. Short bursts of moderate exertion suit us better. How bad for us is sitting? Is running harmful? Is it normal to be less active as we age? It’s a dense book but written in an engaging accessible way. Totally recommend it.
2/ Eula Bliss – Having and Being Had
This book is snappy and really well-observed and I devoured it. Eula Bliss picks apart capitalism, work, consumerism, the value we place on things and where we fit within it all. It throws new light on things we take for granted and makes you ask the question “is this really what life is all about?”. I can’t do this book justice in a short review, it’s way too smart for that. Try it and shine a different light on your life.
3/ Tias Little – Yoga of the Subtle Body: A Guide to the Physical and Energetic Anatomy of Yoga
I’ve been wanting to recommend a book on yoga for a few months but couldn’t find a good general one. Most of the yoga books I have are either teaching texts, philosophical, or on a specific subject. This book falls into the latter category. It’s a beautifully written book and has had a deep influence on the way I practice and teach. Tias Little, a hugely experienced teacher, links physical anatomy to the yogic subtle body of chakras, nadis and koshas. And he provides practices (postures, breaths, meditations) to help you experience these anatomical and energetic centres.
4/ Dearbhla Reynolds – The Cultured Club: Fabulously Funky Fermentation Recipes
Those of you who know me well will know how much a love fermented foods. Our kitchen is always one jar away from a fermentation explosion! This book is a fermentation bible – it’s not vegan but has plenty of plant based recipes. It covers basic fermentation techniques using simple ingredients and provides recipes for sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, condiments, dips, tapenades, breads, nut cheeses and tonics.
5/ Rick Hanson – Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom
This is one of my favourite books – I haven’t recommended it before as I’m pretty sure I’ve raved on about it to most of you already! Neuroscience meets meditation. What do mindfulness and spiritual pursuits do to the brain? How can we use them to enhance our mental health? This and so much more – this is almost a set text for Babacool yogis, give it a go.
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