When you hear the word esoteric, you may think it sounds like weird stuff you can’t comprehend. And a powerful cure for insomnia. However, the true nature of esoteric teachings, is that when you are ready for the information, it inspires you with a greater depth of understanding, that you can readily use to change your perspective of life. It will essentially provide you with an epiphany every time you read it. If you are ready for it. This is not a challenge to speed read through the books, because then you won’t get the transformation.
Esoteric reading is not just brain food, but also soul food.
In this vast sea of information, by so many authors, its hard to determine which books can give you the most useful information to maximize the use of your time. I have found in my thirty plus years of study, that there are a group of authors that tend to be more effective in conveying, not only knowledge, but light as well. In their ability to convey both knowledge and light in their writing, they provide a service that truly stands out in supporting your personal transformation.
I’m speaking of initiates, whether it is an initiate of the Golden Dawn tradition, Shamanic tradition, Toltec, Buddhist, etc. there are too many initiatory paths to mention. Most initiatory traditions have been around for centuries and involve some of the greatest secrets of spiritual training. These lineages have the ability to convey power and authority for the purpose of your transformation. This is why their writing is so effective.
In writing, they provide esoteric teachings as part of their service to light.
Here is a short list of esoteric books, broken down into general levels of complexity. The purpose of all esoteric writing is to help you understand your own true nature, and to help you overcome your attachments and misconceptions about yourself, to understand a more universal perspective.
1. Think and Grow Rich
by Napolean Hill
This timeless classic is read by businessmen throughout the world, because they understand that it is by their very thoughts that they create the kind of life they want to live.
2. Autobiography of a Yogi
by Paramahansa Yogananda
This is probably one of the more advanced introductory books. For most people, it is just the life of Yogananda, but what he teaches in this book explains how to Master the 7 key areas of life.
3. The Alchemist
by Paulo Coelho
Helps you tap into your core abilities to do the miraculous. It introduces the concept of the philosopher’s stone.
4. The Four Agreements
by Don Miguel Ruiz
Toltec wisdom. Perhaps the most simplified way to live a good life. If we honor the four agreements, we honor all things.
5. Simplified Qabala Magic*
by Ted Andrews
An introduction to one of the most complex, foundational spiritual systems for transformation, Qabalah. This book is to Qabalah, as addition and subtraction are to mathematics.
Jonathan Livingston Seagull
by Richard Bach
This story helps us rise up above our believed limitations and go beyond the expectations of those around us. To soar and become as great as we desire to be.
1. The Book of Five Rings
by Miyamoto Musashi
This book explains the basic nature of the five elements of creation. The five elements are in all things, including all human behavior. This is known as the Japanese businessmen’s bible.
The Art of War: Sun Tzu
by Sun Tzu
Arguably the greatest general to ever live, Sun Tzu; this book is about how to overcome challenging obstacles, take responsibility, and think outside the box.
2. The Training and Work of an Initiate
by Dion Fortune
An essential book for initiates, regardless of what path they pursue.
3. The Power of Myth
by Joseph Campbell
This book explains the nature of archetypes, which are fundamental in all higher Shamanic and Celestial work.
4. The Complete Guide to the Kabblah*
by Will Parfett
This is perhaps the most advanced of the intermediate books, as Will Parfett is excellent at explaining the nature of Kabbalah, but does it in a way that is easier to understand. This is the trigonometry of Kabbalah.
5. The Essential Golden Dawn: An Introduction to High Magic
by Chic Cicero
An excellent guide for the Western Esoteric tradition. It continues the work of Israel Regardie (founder of Sedona, Arizona and wrote the Complete Golden Dawn).
edited by Brian Copenhaver
Easily my favorite book! Brian Copenhaver does an excellent job in compiling the Corpus Hermeticus in such a way that it follows one book/letter to the next, making it easier to understand the teachings of Hermes Trismegustus. The Corpus Hermeticus (body of work of Hermes), is some of the oldest teachings available and is the foundation of all spiritual traditions.
2. The Key of the Mysteries
by Eliphas Levi
This French Qabalist, Rabi from the 19th century, compiled some of the deepest esoteric writing available. Without the keys, his writings are difficult to decipher.
3. Initiation Human and Solar
by Alice Bailey
Alice Bailey’s work with Dewal Cole helps us in the West to understand the nature of Eastern esoteric tradition.
4. Mystical Qabalah*
by Dion Fortune
Dion Fortune’s gift of understanding Qabalah is indeed profound, and she shares some of the most abstract teachings of Qabalah in this book. Compares to the intro to quantum physics of Qabalah.
5.Kabbalah: An Introduction and Illumination for the World Todayby Charles Ponce
This is also a very deep understanding of Qabalah. It is a more linear (rather than abstract) approach to Qabalah. This is one of my favorite books on the subject of Qabalah.
*Qabalah refers to the universal, mystical Qabalah. Considered to be the highest level of Qabalah training. Not referring to Jewish or Christian Kabbalah, but refers to a universal system.