ConsciousPlanet Newsletter Archive

Paraview Media Guide

November 2004

Paraview Media Guide is a monthly guide to books, magazines, websites, and other media that capture your attention, expand your mind, and transform the world. Leading experts in mind, body, and spirit and the frontiers of science and culture present their media picks. This free newsletter is distributed by subscription only. To subscribe, unsubscribe, or obtain sponsorship information, please see instructions at the end of this newsletter.



Yasuhiko Genku Kimura, founder and chairman of Vision In Action, has extensively lectured on the philosophy and methodology of alignment beyond agreement and the transformation of the global ecology of thinking. Yasuhiko is the author of The Book of Balance (Paraview Special Editions), Think Kosmically Act Globally, and The Twilight Manifesto, as well as numerous essays, articles, and translations on evolutionary spirituality and ethics, and integral philosophy, science, and business. He also is the editor-in-chief of VIA: The Journal of Integral Thinking for Visionary Action, which examines business, philosophy, science, art, and other social interests from a range of original and thought-provoking perspectives. In addition to guest-editing our Media Guide this month, Yasuhiko also contributed his VIA essay, “Alignment Beyond Agreement,”  to our website.

For me personally, November is a special month because it is the month I was born (11/23). In my native home in rural Japan, November is normally the transition between autumn and winter even though it occasionally snows. November 23 is a national holiday in Japan, Labor Thanksgiving Day. Adding to the festivities, in the U.S. the date falls around Thanksgiving. Indeed, there is much in life to give thanks for. I feel very grateful to be alive in this beautiful world surrounded by many wonderful people. Gratitude goes beyond forgiveness and heals wounds within and without. Therefore, my spiritual message is very simple: Give up your suffering and let gratitude be your attitude.

Living in this period of unprecedented change and uncertainty, it is critical to develop a clear understanding of current conditions in the world. For this purpose I recommend two books that provide us with sound historical and futuristic perspectives: Alan Macfarlane’s The Making of the Modern World: Visions from the West and East; and James C. Bennett’s The Anglosphere Challenge: Why the English-Speaking Nations Will Lead the Way in the Twenty-First Century.

In seeing the devastating impact and danger of Islamic fascism in the form of global terrorism, people from a non-Islamic background are asking: What is real Islam? I recommend two books that provide us with a most profound understanding of the Islamic religion: Frithjof Schuon’s Understanding Islam and Lex Hixon’s The Heart of Qur’an: An Introduction to Islamic Spirituality.

Beneath the visible flux of events and episodes we see in the news, in the realm of ideas, a powerful convergence of science, art, and spirituality is taking place. To understand this convergence, I recommend three books: Frederick Turner’s The Culture of Hope: A New Birth of the Classical Spirit; Christopher Alexander’s The Nature of Order: An Essay on the Art of Building and the Nature of the Universe; and Ervin Laszlo’s Science and the Akashic Field: An Integral Theory of Everything.

And last but not the least, a book very close to my heart, Lafcadio Hearn’s Gleanings in Buddha-Fields: Studies of Hand and Soul in the Far East, first published in 1898, now available in Paraview’s Cosimo Classics series. In 1890, Lafcadio Hearn (1850 1904), a Greek-born British author, moved to Japan - where he married, became a naturalized citizen, and lived until his death. He adopted a Japanese name, Yakumo Koizumi, and wrote many penetrating essays on Japan and Japanese culture.

To better understand how world-shaping affairs play out in the media, veteran reporter Gwen Ifill and a panel of journalists take a behind-the-scenes look at the top news each week on the PBS show Washington Week. The PBS Special docudrama Touching The Void tells the story of mountain climbers Joe Simpson and Simon Yates’ legendary 1985 climb of the forbidden 21,000-foot Siula Grande in the Peruvian Andes. It is a remarkable story of human endurance and the will to survive.
Must-Hear Music There is never a paucity of musical geniuses to nourish our souls and enrich our lives. Estonian-born Arvo Pärt is one of the most creative and original contemporary classical composers. I recommend his Summa, Alina, and De Profundis. Japanese-born Toru Takemitsu is another contemporary genius. To start with, I recommend his Requiem: Twill by Twilight and Quotation of Dream (20/21 Series). As an enthusiastic Beethoven lover, I recommend Beethoven’s String Quartets delightfully played by the Takács Quartet, and Franz Liszt’s monumental transcriptions of Franz Liszt: The Complete Beethoven Symphonies brilliantly played by Leslie Howard. Thanks to a technological breakthrough in recreating music roll performances, we can now listen to Rachmaninoff playing the piano in a two-part series A Window in Time.

You may want to start your morning with Astronomy Picture of the Day so that you can maintain a “cosmic perspective” throughout the day on all the problems coming your way. When you are tired of watching, reading, or listening to bad news, you should visit Good News Broadcast.

Click to see close-up of book cover

What’s New at Paraview

Danny Schechter talks about the US media and the Iraq war

Yasuhiko Genku Kimura writes about “Alignment Beyond Agreement

See you next month!

If you miss anything described above that you wanted to see or hear, more information about the media providers, programming, and air times is always available through links at our Conscious TV Conscious Radio

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