Reading June 2013

Meetings With Remarkable Men – GI Gurdjieff

Gurdjieff was a controversial and idiosyncratic spiritual teacher. This second volume of his works is a mixture of autobiography and teaching stories. Frustrating, bizarre and remarkable. Some pretty wild stories in there. Effectively communicates the strenuous efforts and commitment required on the spiritual path.

Life Is Real Only Then, When I Am – GI Gurdjieff

Third and final of Gurdjieff’s works, sadly incomplete – sadly because much of what he promised to write he never got around to before dying. Deeply intense exposure to the thought processes of a man who, whatever else you might say about him, was not fucking around.

Fuller’s Earth – J Brenneman

Towards the end of his life, visionary genius design scientist (and moose-hero) Buckminster Fuller sat down a few times with three children aged between 10 and 12 and explained his ideas to them and answered their questions. The result is an extraordinary treasure. Mostly he teaches the essence of his geometrical and mathematical ideas (that form the backbone of his technical masterwork Synergetics) in a readily assimilable form. But the Q&A is pretty special. Bucky answering a question like “What do you think the universe is?” is not to be missed. Easily the most accessible exposition of Fuller’s ideas ever, and a very good introduction to the man.

Changeology – John Norcross

Self-help for rationalist materialists who want the security of thirty years of research to back up what they are being told to do. Clear and pretty comprehensive, but adds surprisingly little to the literature on self-change if you are familiar with it; unless, of course, you are a rationalist materialist who wouldn’t go near that stuff, in which case, get this, and be told the same stuff, in a very rigorous and formal fashion.

The First 20 Hours – Joel Kaufmann

Book on how to deconstruct skills and approach learning any new skill fast – in 20 hours, as the title suggests. I felt this was a bit light. Kaufman’s “Personal MBA” is phenomenal, and I preordered this based on that. The true value of this will come in the application of the methods, but it did seem a little lacking… again, it may depend how much of this kind of material is familiar. Hard-core lifehackers will find some tips and tricks. Skim it from the library: all the method is in the first few chapters, the rest is examples.

All Star Superman – Grant Morrison

Nice, I guess. More fun than I remember Superman being, less fun than Morrison often is.

Walking Dead – first 3 trades – Robert Kirkman

The library had the first three trade paperbacks in at once, so I grabbed ’em to see what the fuss is about, even though I don’t give a crap about zombies. Solid, relatively taut, am pretty vague on a lot of the characters.  I can see how this is going to get intense and grinding over time. Returned the first three, and the next five were all in… so we shall see.

Having been reading and skimming a bunch of stuff for various projects.

And in other media, watched Season 3 of Game of Thrones in the space of a few days. \m/

2 Responses to “Reading June 2013”

  1.   Pearce
    July 2nd, 2013 | 9:29 am

    I should lend you the dvd of Meetings With Remarkable Men now that I’ve finally found it again.

  2.   billy
    July 2nd, 2013 | 7:01 pm

    Aha! Cheers, acquired a copy some time ago 🙂