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Below are some of my most inspiring resources. For me they have resulted in personal growth, improved business results, and a greater sense of well-being.

Good To Great

In his groundbreaking book, Jim Collins immediately lays out how to improve ANYTHING in a no nonsense way. While Good to Great is a business book, you can apply it to your family, your finances, your LIFE. The author starts by telling you what real leadership is. Then he explains the importance of hiring the right people. Are you starting a band? It applies to the musicioans you play with. The author reveals The Hedgehog Concept. That's about core strengths, one of your most powerful life insights. On to The Flywheel Concept, and the momentum of good things taking place. Get your finances in order with this concept. Here is a book that can improve your whole life, your hobbies and interests, and family finances by applying these great ideas to yourself. If you insist on using these concepts at work in business, sure, it's fantastic for that too.

Eckhart Tolle

In The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle speaks to us on the level of being, and allows us to remain there. He reminds us that words are signposts, not the things spoken about. He shows us not a path to some future enlightenment, but he awakens us right now. With a subtle form of humour and deep caring, he points to the layers that hide us from ourselves, and gently strips them away. In his practical style of sharing, Exckhart offers a variety of portals to the experience of awakening. Without theories, without psychology, without effort he gestures, gently turning us in an unexpected direction. Before you even realize it, you are in the here and now, in awe, shocked. All you can do is take a deep breath.

Byron Katie

In her book Loving What Is, Katie shows us the way out of the thoughts that trap us in a world of pain. I consider her work to be a bridge between psychoanalysis and spirituality, between Socratic dialogue and Zen silent teaching. In very simple to understand terms, Katie gives you the tools to free yourself from a life of suffering and confusion. In the workplace, people familiar with Katie are free of the gossip, backbiting, and other negative behaviors that are corrosive to team and to a company. Her book A Thousand Names For Joy is also wonderful. This one is beautiful in a poetic way as we get to experience Katie in a very intuitive and non-technical way. Byron Katie has done great work all over the world, and these books are a pathway to sharing her work.

Don Miguel Ruiz

Meant for personal growth, Ruiz blends ancient lore of the Toltec Indians with a modern manual consisting of four basic steps. The Four Agreements state simply and clearly what you must do, with the promise of living in Heaven on Earth right now. By adhering to these four practices, your life will change dramatically for the better. 1) Be impeccable with your word, 2) Don't take anything personally, 3) Don't make assumptions, 4) Always do your best. The book explains how to put these "agreements" into practice and face the daily challenges that currently prevent you from being the peaceful warrior. This is a powerfully awesome book, not to be underestimated, for it is in alignment with all the great teachings and paths towards enlightenment. Yet the formula is deceptively simple.

Lao Tzu

"The way to do, is to be." There are a number of translations or interpretations of The Tao Teh Ching, by Lao Tzu. My favorite interpretation is the one by Witter Bynner, though it's fun to compare it to the more literal translation by Burton Watson or the modern translation by Stephen Mitchell. The ancient Lao Tzu offers us a business, political, social, and personal way of living in harmony with life. The Tao is is a blend of the practical, the mystical, and the profound. Although the the book can be read in a sitting, its wisdom is of value for a lifetime.

Joan of Arc

Very few people know that Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) wrote a major work on Joan of Arc. Still fewer know that he considered it not only his most important but also his best work. He spent twelve years in research and many months in France doing archival work and then made several attempts until he felt he finally had the story he wanted to tell. He reached his conclusion about Joan's unique place in history only after studying in detail accounts written by both sides, the French and the English. (From the description on Amazon.com)

The Haiku Anthology

The Haiku Anthology is really the best book to start with if you like Haiku or want to learn about it. The author, Cor van den Heuvel has put together an incredible sampling if the very best, moving and enlightening Haiku, which are Zen poems. "This is a landmark work in modern haiku, honoring a genre of poetry that celebrates simplicity, emotion, and imagery in which only a few words convey worlds of mystery and meaning. Written in English by 89 poets, it includes the top haiku writers of the American past and present. Each of these perfect little poems will come as a revelation to the uninitiated reader and will bring joy to the haiku enthusiast." (From the description on Amazon.com)

Zen Flesh, Zen Bones

Zen Flesh, Zen Bones is a wonderful introduction to Zen. Words cannot describe the Zen experience, and one can only point to Zen, for the seeker to be enlightened. This is best done by the use of very short stories which illustrate the experience. The first part of the book contains 101 Zen stories, a fantastic way to learn Zen. By reading any one story, you can possibly experience Zen awakening. And once you "get it," the other stories all fall into place like a puzzle which suddenly makes sense. Many of these stories are told and retold by spiritual teachers and this collections will familiarize you with the teaching.

The Prophet

The Prophet, by Khalil Gibran is one of the finest most beautifully poetic handbooks to living. Each section is devoted to a life topic, and sentence by sentence you will be transported to a higher level of consciousness. YTou can read the book in oine sitting, so it's not a lengthy discourse. It is a very simple book written in a language easy to understand where you are taken deeper and deeper into the mystery of your own being.

Here is a running list of other titles I think are very worthwhile...

Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugen Herrigel

Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

Be As You Are by Ramana Maharshi

Think on These Things by J. Krishnamurti

Be Here Now by Ram Dass


Movies with meaning: Ground Hog Day, Being There, The Man Who Would Be King, The Sound of Music, The Secret of Santa Vittorio, Paycheck, The Game, The Time Machine (Original Version from 1960), Zorba the Greek, The Giant Mechanical Man, Elizabethtown, The Mask of Zorro, The Shawshank Redemption, Casablanca, It's a Wonderful Life, The Wizard of Oz, Darby O'Gill and the Little People, 12 Monkeys, The Sixth Sense, The Others, Cast Away (with Tom Hanks), The African Queen, The Grapes of Wrath, Fantasia, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jean De Floret, Manon of the Spring, and more to follow (with descriptions)...

Watch these on YouTube, Netflix, your Cable Channels or Amazon Prime, or buy them here:


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As far as overdoing it, I can't worry about what's coming because life plans you more than you plan it.

--Tony Bennett, 89, on releasing his new jazz album


There are no ordinary moments.

Dan Millman, author of The Peaceful Warrior


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My Faves Section
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Mike's Tardigrade Website

Byron Katie's "The Work"

My Leathercraft videos

Voyant (Analyzes your writing)

Eckhart Tolle's Website (watch his videos on youtube for free)

Online Photography Classes

Russell Brand's Twitter Feed (worth it)

The Trews (very, very worth it)

B.B. King Master Class (5 Videos)

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The Stich Method to Blues Soloing

Mike's Photography Albums

My Most Awesome JAZZ course ONLINE

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Mike asks physicist Brian Green the most important question about the universe.

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Alan Watts on Spiritual Authority

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Eckhart Tolle on Relationships

See James Galway perform Danny Boy

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