Leo Babauta

Creator of Zen Habits. Vegan, dad, husband. @zen_habits

Walden

Walden

The simplicity and thoughtfulness of this book stirred me to think about what’s important, and to take a closer look at society and whether I wanted to be a part of what everyone else is doing.

Tao Te Ching

Tao Te Ching

Although I’ve learned much from Zen writings, the Tao Te Ching has probably been a bigger influence on my philosophy. I love its simplicity, and the power that comes from that simplicity. It’s a powerful manual for living, and Zen Habits is not much more than a modern take on this book.

Manufacturing Consent

Manufacturing Consent

Chomsky’s writings awoke in me, as they did in many others, an awareness of the political and corporate machine that affects all of our lives. When people ask me how I can boycott reading and watching the news for years now (“You need to be aware of the world around you!”), I would point them to this book. The reading is a bit dense, but it’s powerful.