My new project, “The Cloud and the Hazelnut,” is not yet a week old but I have finished the first major chunk of it. On the Mystical Library page you’ll find two lists: Christian Mysticism: Twenty-Five Essential Books and World Mysticism: Twenty-Five Essential Books. These combined lists provide fifty books that I believe will give the interested reader an excellent, thorough grounding in historical, traditional Christian mysticism, as well as a nice introductory overview of the other great mystical spiritualites of the world. The first list was really pretty easy for me to draw up; but the “World Mysticism” list was harder, as it contains more material that I have not (yet) read. To draw up the list, I looked at the table of contents for Huston Smith’s The World’s Religions and tried to offer a balanced sampling of books by and about mystics from each of the major faith traditions. The only tradition found in Smith’s work that isn’t represented on my list is Confucianism, which is pretty widely accepted as not really a “mystical” path. In its place, I offered two post-modern, non-sectarian voices: Ken Wilber and Eckhart Tolle.
So there you go. My mysticism bibliography is off and running. Please let me know what you think of it, or if you have any suggestions to improve it. It will be a long, slow work in progress; I do have a day job, after all!