25+ Best Mind Expanding Books
(By: Jacques Barzun )
The book is crammed with ideas, events and biographies and investigates certain key concepts of Western Civilization, claiming at the same time that the ideas like individualism and self consciousness has its origin in the European culture. The book is written in a straight forward manner intending to impart more information and should be read by one and all.
(By: Tim Wu )
This book deals with the development of mass communication technologies since the invention of radio to the more recent development of internet and how this information dissemination medium has the socio cultural and political scenario throughout the world. Internet has empowered us and at the same time there is a threat of overt control by private enterprises that can use our freedom for commercial gains.
The Ghost Map: The Story of London's Most Terrifying Epidemic--and How It Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World
(By: Steven Johnson )
This book deals with the outbreak of cholera epidemic in London city in the mid nineteenth century and how it has changed the perception of pathogenic diseases, garbage removal infrastructure that is so essential in any big city. The book reminds us the potential dangers of such outbreaks of diseases that take away so many lives. The book should be read by all concerned about the health and hygiene of his surroundings.
(By: Christopher Alexander (Author), Sara Ishikawa (Author), Murray Silverstein (Author), Max Jacobson (Author), Ingrid Fiksdahl-King (Author), Shlomo Angel (Author) )
The book deals with various patterns and designs in construction of buildings and building up a city and what are the factors within this planning that makes dwelling in these cities comfortable and hazard free. The book is very well written that provides you with a map of interrelation between different institutions that makes a community humane and alive.
(By: Jonathan Haidt )
The author is a moral psychologist who delves deeper into the moral inclinations about man and tries to decipher what makes the cooperation as well as dissent happening in this world of polarized ideologies. The author tries to show that our moral judgment is more often based on gut feeling that our reason and how conflicting ideas and political standpoint are actually right when judged from their own set of arguments.
(By: David Sloan )
The author is an evolutionary biologist who tried to illustrate how evolution works at every level of our biological as well as social life processes and how our understanding of it can change the very perception of life itself. This book is not exactly a science text book, but rather meant for anyone who is interested to know about the subtle paths of evolution.
(By: G. Polya (Author) )
The book is a fine classic on problem solving methods which came from a mathematician well versed with the nuances of problem solving mechanisms. The book tries to show that almost all types of problems can be solved if we know the correct problem solving procedure. This book would provide a great time to anyone interested in brain teasers and likes to use his mind in an active manner.
(By: Eric Berne (Author) )
It is an eye opening book on our most intimate dealings with the people we are related to, the games that we play with each other, the sexual games, the power games and everything that makes a social transaction meaningful. This book contains original insights about our sub conscious maneuvers and had been widely popular since its first release.
(By: George Lakoff (Author), Mark Johnson (Author) )
This book deals with the metaphors and how our specific use of the language actually determines our perception of reality. It is an eye opening book on the realm of thoughts, language and our experience of reality stressing how the usage of metaphors are deeply rooted to our mode of thinking. It is a must read for anyone interested in social anthropology.
(By: Joseph Campbell (Author) )
This is a book on comparative mythologies and how the mythologies invented by diverse cultures are similar in their perception of a hero. Though written with a scholarly overtone, the book is written for the general public and anyone interested in understanding the deep import of world mythologies in our own sense of experienced reality.
What Is the Name of This Book?: The Riddle of Dracula and Other Logical Puzzles (Dover Recreational Math)
(By: Raymond M. Smullyan )
This book is intended to challenge with its mind boggling logical puzzles which would provide you a vigorous exercise for your mind and would help you keep your sharp and tuned to logic and reasons. The intriguing puzzles would impress a mathematics student and an intelligent layman like and would work like a mental gym once you get interested in it.
(By: Daniel Kahneman )
This book deals with our basic ways of thinking, the one that is fast which depends on our intuition and past experience while the other is slow and depends on rational processes of mind. This is an eye opening book which describes how these seemingly incompatible modes of thoughts actually complement each other and determine our cognitive processes.
(By: Dan Ariely (Author) )
The book tries to illustrate how our seeming irrational behavior is not actually senseless but has an underlying pattern and hence can be predicted beforehand. We try to play smart by claiming to be practical and rational but in most of the trivial as well as important actions our irrational side shows up. It is a mind expanding book that shows us that our irrational self is as vital as our rational side.
(By: Robert B., PhD Cialdini )
This book deals with the art and science of persuasion and how to persuade people on your side own side of argument. According to the author there are six essential aspects of persuasion like reciprocity and authority and if some basic skill is learnt regarding the art of persuasion, you can influence just about anybody.
(By: Daniel C. Dennett )
This book is about the evolutionary processes as explained by Darwin and how this mindless repetition of a simple algorithm can explain the entire evolution of four billion years. The author further argues that such simple principles of evolution have created something so complicated as human mind and it can even contribute in our discovery of beauty and morality.
(By: Daniel C. Dennett )
This is a brilliant and mind expanding book which illustrates our different modes of thinking and how we are honing our skill of understanding the world better by consciously or unconsciously using these modes of thoughts. One example is that by making mistakes and by trial and error we a constantly expanding and honing our cognitive abilities that has a direct bearing on our way of thought.
(By: Richard Dawkins )
This is one of the eye opening books by a famous biologist who tried to show that how we are eternally programmed to preserve our genes and perpetuate it through hereditary chains. The genes are concerned about its survival and we the living beings are the vehicles that drives through this game of life.
(By: Greg Mortenson (Author), David Oliver Relin (Author) )
This is a well documented tale about an American who went all his way to built schools for the small children in the remotest corners of mountainous Pakistan. After failing to climb the second highest peak in the world he stumbled upon a village and enlivened by their generosity and decided to build a school for them. It is an eye opening book about how a single man’s endeavor can make a lot of difference.
(By: Khaled Hosseini )
This is a very well written novel written in the background of war and strife torn Afghanistan about two young women in their journey towards adulthood. The prose style is brilliant and it is imbibed with stories of the life of common people as they face the turmoil of history. It is an eye opening book on love and power.
(By: Laura Hillenbrand )
This book is about a survival story of World War II with an amazing discussion of a life who had participated in the Olympics, had been in the American Air force, fallen into the ocean, was adrift on the pacific for a month, caught by the Japanese forces and was freed again to live the life at its fullest. This is a book about courage and resilience of a man that would inspire all.
(By: Bill O'Reilly (Author), Martin Dugard (Autho )
This a well thought out writing on the life and death of Jesus and it is brilliantly written that managed to maintain a fine balance between the straight forward biography and a religious writing. References are drawn from various Gospels although this is not a religious book. It is a mind expanding book which gives you an insight on the life of son of God.
Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10 [Kindle Edition]
(By: Marcus Luttrell (Author), Patrick Robinson (Contributor) )
This book is about the lone survivor of the SEAL team and it narrates the story of their fight in the Afghan war, their bravery and sacrifice. The book is written like a Hollywood thriller and it can feature to be a movie some day. It is an eye opening book on how the arm forces sacrifices their life for their fellow countrymen.
(By: Ray Bradbury )
This is a futuristic novel that deals with the negative fallout of the technological advancement when we would lose our freedom to think on our feet. The overarching control by the powerful bodies would destroy any home of liberalism if we do not give it a thought beforehand. It’s very well written and compelling to read.
The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom (A Toltec Wisdom Book Book 1) [Kindle Edition]
(By: Don Miguel Ruiz (Author), Janet Mills (Editor) )
This is a mind expanding book and a must read for anyone who values his or her personal freedom. Four simple principles are taught, like for example of being impeccable with your words you can avoid many conflicts and bondage. Personal freedom is our most valuable asset as an adult and mature human beings and this book teaches you to be free without being overbearing or a hindrance to other’s freedom.
(By: Susan Cain )
This book argues in favor of the introvert people and goes on to show that introversion is a necessary precondition for any meditative thinking. The ideal of extraversion, of being talkative, outgoing and action oriented is so pervasive in modern times that introverts are hardly noticed. We seldom stop and think that great talents can emerge from being quiet and introverted.
(By: Rebecca Skloot )
This book is a must read to all students of science who are concerned about the ethical side of scientific research; A real mind expanding book which provides you with an insight about the Lacks family and their ordeals in pursuit of scientific research. The book is written in simple prose and should be read by one and all.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change (25th Anniversary Edition) [Kindle Edition]
(By: Stephen R. Covey )
This book conveys seven habits of highly effective people which had made them successful in personal front. The author illustrates that we need to undergo a paradigm shift and a basic change in our behaviors and attitudes in order to be successful in life. The habits deal with independence and self mastery that gives strength and courage to an individual.
(By: Gary D Chapman )
This is like a romantic handbook that teaches you simple techniques as how to convey your affection to your loved ones and what would be our basic attitude in a love relationship that would make it more fulfilling and enduring. A must read for anyone who had fallen in love and an eye opening book for anyone involved in a love relationship.
(By: Naoki Higashida (Author), Ka Yoshida (Translator), David Mitchell (Translator) )
This book is about a autistic child explaining about the behavioral pattern and how he thinks about the world in general. This is a very useful book in understanding about the autistic individual and why they need a special treatment to cope with the society at large.
The above mentioned books deals with a wide array of subjects, but the basic perception is that we get to know about the world and about us as an individual the more we read such mind expanding books. They are really helpful to make you a more effective and responsible citizen of the world.