Books and DVDs that Help

We are lucky. We humans keep ourselves in a nearly unlimited supply of wonderful and helpful books & DVDs. Below are just a few which have been helpful to my life and my practice.


The first time I tried FlexAware, I felt such a positive and immediate (yet gentle) change in my system, I decided to jump into the FlexAware Teacher Education program. Today, I recommend Steven Shafarman’s FlexAware Teacher Education program even for those who never intend to teach. It’s just a wonderful, intensive personal development and health awareness and improvement process! For those not lucky enough to have the opportunity to work with Steve directly, I recommend Steve Shafarman’s FlexAware DVD, available from
Steve’s book Awareness Heals, his own “take” on the body wisdom he developed in his time working with Moshe Feldenkrais, has also been helpful to many, from movement educators and manual therapists to those managing pain and bodily changes:


Pain Free

If you have been in class when someone has mentioned pain, you probably have heard me talk about this book. Mr. Egoscue solved his own pain problems and then went on to help others solve theirs. His approach is ingenious and unlike any other I’ve seen, because a big part of what he does is get you to release the muscles that are habitually over-engaged.


The Gentle At of Verbal Self Defense

Suzette Haden Elgin understands the T’ai Chi Ch’uan of social interactions like no one else. Elgin calls it the Gentle Art of Verbal Self Defense, and I have a few self-designed GAVSD resources here.
In her books, Elgin shows you, step by step, how to create an environment in which verbal abuse almost never happens, and, in the rare cases in which it does, how to manage it quickly and effectively, and with no loss of face on either side. In other words, when you put this into practice, you not only dissipate the aggression coming at you, you give the person lobbing the blow the space to consider another option, which often results in surprisingly pleasant outcomes, and which may even influence the aggressor’s next encounter. I’ve seen it in action, and this is powerful stuff. I teach this to various groups whenever I get the chance, and I wish they’d teach it regularly in schools.


A Path With Heart

I was at the apartment of a friend of a friend in Manhattan. She opened her closet, which was full of books and said something like, “there’s a book you need.” And then, taking this one from the shelf she gave ti to me and said, “Here, you need this.” She was right. Jack Kornfield’s “A Path With Heart” is one of those books you keep extra copies of and then keep giving away.


Reverse Heart Disease Now

This book is here because Dr. Stephen Sinatra’s work has made a huge difference for my family. It was first recommended to us by my mother-in-law’s acupuncturist, and I’ve been trying to spread the word ever since. Sinatra explains how heart disease can be reversed. To Sinatra’s basic protocol of D-Ribose, CoQ 10, Magnesium and L-Carnitine we added K2 (different from K), inspired by the Rotterdam Study


Robert Aitken’s Taking the Path of Zen

Blessedly simple and straightforward, yet profound--like Zen itself. Small in size but huge in its many wisdoms: physical, mental, spiritual. Not just for Buddhists, much less Zen Buddhists.