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The Five Faculties – Putting Wisdom in Charge of the Mind

Posted on | August 30, 2018 | 1 Comment

The Five Faculties

The Five Faculties with the subtitle Putting Wisdom in Charge of the Mind by Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu. The Five Faculties are in the Buddhist tradition known as conviction, persistence, mindfulness, concentration, and discernment. These are qualities that the Buddha numbered among his most important teachings. When put in charge of the mind, they lead all the way to awakening. Taken together, they deal primarily with the practice of meditation, which makes them a good framework for a meditation retreat. However, the first faculty—conviction—focuses on questions of self and world: what kinds of happiness you believe you are capable of attaining, along with what kind of happiness you believe can be found in the world. This means that the five faculties also provide an excellent framework for covering the entire practice of the Buddha’s teachings, both on retreat and in the world at large. This book was written in 2017 after a nine-day retreat held by Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu with a Buddhist group near Marseilles.

Download the free PDF e-book here:

PDF ebook downloadThe Five Faculties



Selected Works of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar

Posted on | August 10, 2018 | No Comments

Selected Works Of Dr Ambedkar

Selected Works of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar is a huge collection, 4795 pages, consisting of articles and essays on the Indian democracy, spiritual life, and social system. Ambedkar was independent India’s first minister of justice and one of the main writers of the constitution. He spent his life working for social justice and the elimination of the caste system, and he started a mass conversion of lower caste Dalits to Buddhism when he in 1956 himself converted to Buddhism. He founded the Buddhist Society of India and wrote several works on Buddhism, some of which are included in this compilation. Download the free PDF e-book here (this is a huge download, about 50 MB):

PDF ebook download Selected Works Of Dr. Ambedkar

The Gurdjieff Movements – A Communication of Ancient Wisdom

Posted on | August 5, 2018 | No Comments

The Gurdjieff Movements

The Gurdjieff Movements – A Communication of Ancient Wisdom is a new book by Wim van Dullemen on Gurdjieff’s hundreds of precise and mostly asymmetrical gestures, arranged into detailed choreographies for groups of practitioners. Van Dullemen reconsiders the eminent role of the Movements, revealing them as a vital yet often-neglected component in the transmission of Gurdjieff’s legacy. Thanks to the publisher we have got the permission to post a chapter of the book here. The chapter explores why Gurdjieff, an esoteric teacher and not a choreographer left such a vast number of extremely detailed dances, how they relate to his writings and compositions. The conclusion is Yes, all of Gurdjieff´s works complement each other. They share ritualistic qualities and hidden meanings which are explained in the book. Van Dullemen, whose first Movements’ teacher received her instructions directly from Gurdjieff himself, is in a unique position to offer theory and first-hand experience about the movements. He is a professional musician and a long-time practitioner of the Gurdjieff work who trained in these Movements and served as a master accompanist for the practice for over thirty years. “No book can teach the Movements,” the author clearly asserts. And, he makes no such attempt here. Far from an instruction manual, The Gurdjieff Movements, A Communication of Ancient Wisdom, offers invaluable insight into and greater understanding of the whys and wherefores of this fourth arm of the vast teaching that comprises Gurdjieff’s complete communication: his books, his oral teachings, his music and finally his Movements.

Download the chapter “Inventory and Classification of Gurdjieff´s Legacy” here:

PDF ebook downloadThe Gurdjieff Movements

Remember, we have an entire section with books about and by Gurdjieff and his pupils here:  https://www.holybooks.com/category/the-fourth-way/


The Perfumed Garden

Posted on | July 30, 2018 | No Comments

The Perfumed GardenThe Perfumed Garden also known as The Perfumed Garden of Sensual Delight is a classic Arabic sex manual and a piece of erotic literature. Muḥammad ibn Muḥammad al-Nafzawi probably wrote The Perfumed Garden sometime during the twelfth century somewhere around today’s Tunisia. The book is interesting because of its no-tabu approach, amusing stories and somewhat naive assumptions about human physiology. The Perfumed Garden lists opinions on how men and women should behave and dress in order to be attractive, it gives advice on sexual techniques and warnings about sexual health, and even recipes to remedy sexual maladies.

Download The Perfumed Garden as a free PDF e-book here (106 pages/1.3MB):

PDF ebook downloadThe Perfumed Garden



The Body – Dhamma Reflections on ageing, sickness and death by the nuns of the Theravada Community

Posted on | July 25, 2018 | No Comments

The Body - Buddhist Dhamma TalksThe Body with the subtitle Dhamma Reflections on ageing, sickness and death by the nuns of the Theravada Community is written and compiled by the nuns Ajahn Sundara, Ajahn Candasiri and Ajahn Metta. This collection of nuns’ talks, which were originally offered to the monastic communities and during meditation retreats for lay people, focus on two main themes. The first is obvious but, remarkably, overlooked by many people: our very existence as a physical presence – how that changes and how it ends. The second theme, the Buddha’s teaching, which he referred to as the Four Noble Truths, begins with what is obvious: ‘Life is stressful’, However, having enumerated the causes of this state of affairs, it quickly moves on to the supremely subtle remedy known as ‘letting go’.

The Body
The Body with the subtitle Dhamma Reflections on ageing, sickness and death by the nuns of the Theravada Communit
Written by: Ajahn Sundara, Ajahn Candasiri and Ajahn Metta
Published by: Amaravati Buddhist Monastery
Edition: First
ISBN: 978-1-870205-72-6
Available in: Ebook

Download the free PDF e-book here (166 pages/2.7MB):

PDF ebook downloadThe Body

On the Path

Posted on | June 26, 2018 | No Comments

On the Path - An Anthology on The Noble Eightfold PathOn the Path – An Anthology on The Noble Eightfold Path drawn from the Pali Canon. Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu describes in this book the eightfold path and what the Pali Canon taught about it according to the Buddha. He stresses that all eight factors of the path are necessary for it to yield its intended results. This observation applies specifically to the factor of right concentration. There are interpreters who maintain that the Buddha actually taught two alternative paths—a sixfold path, which includes right mindfulness but the not right effort and right concentration—and a sevenfold path, which includes right effort and right concentration but not right mindfulness. This interpretation is based on a definition of right mindfulness that is totally separate from and at odds with the right effort and right concentration, but this definition has no basis in the suttas and can be forced on the suttas only by squeezing them out of shape. Bhikkhu states that the suttas actually teach right concentration in a way that includes right mindfulness, and right mindfulness in a way that includes right effort. In this way, the factors of the path are mutually penetrating and mutually reinforcing. In fact, they cannot complete their work unless all eight factors mature together.

Download the free PDF e-book here (460 pages/: 2.1MB):

PDF ebook downloadOn The Path


William Blake & Jacob Boehme: Imagination, Experience & the Limitations of Reason

Posted on | June 18, 2018 | No Comments

William Blake and Jacob Boehme Imagination, Experience and the Limitations fo Reason

William Blake & Jacob Boehme: Imagination, Experience & the Limitations of Reason by Kevin Fischer. This essay examines how Jacob Boehme and William Blake understood and valued imagination, and how imagination is quite distinct from fantasy. Both men saw it as rooted in living experience, and as such necessary for a fuller knowledge and understanding of reality. For both, abstract reasoning alone gives only a partial view, one that can distort and limit our understanding and the world that we do experience. By contrast, the creative embodied imagination places us more fully in existence, in ourselves and in the world; it makes possible true Reason; it reveals all the profound potential that is too often unexplored and unrealised in us; and by doing so it affords us a vital living understanding of and relationship with the Divine. Thanks to Kevin Fischer for letting us post his work here.

Download the free PDF e-book here (22 pages/652BK):

PDF ebook downloadWilliam Blake and Jacob Boehme -Imagination, Experience and the Limitations of Reason.pdf


Tearing The Veil That Blindfolds

Posted on | June 18, 2018 | No Comments

Tearing The Veil That Blindfolds

Tearing the Veil that Blindfolds: How I freed myself from the Matrix of Beliefs that bound me to limitation and misery is a self-published e-book, we present here with the author’s permission. Patricia Ramphal has worked on the book for 11 years and it documents her struggle with herself. From the introduction:

This is a book of most of the transmutations of beliefs that I have done in the space of eleven years. I realized that it was meant to be published but I was not aware of it at the time I started taking notes of the clearing of my beliefs (also known as the garbage heap of beliefs that are piled upon our true self). I transmuted everything that came up in my feeling that was not good-feeling and I took notes of them. As I dedicated myself to taking notes, my issues showed up faster to clear. At times I felt frustrated that I was clearing and clearing and all this garbage wasn’t coming to an end. Now I understand that the issues had to be cleared one level at a time since they went very deep.

Tearing the Veil that Blindfolds
Patricia Ramphal has worked on the book for 11 years and it documents her struggle with herself.
Written by: Patricia Ramphal
Published by: Patricia Ramphal
Edition: First
ISBN: None
Available in: Ebook

Download the free PDF e-book here (153 pages/1.6MB):

PDF ebook downloadTearing The Veil That Blindfolds


Magia Naturalis – Natural Magick

Posted on | June 14, 2018 | 2 Comments

Natural MagickMagia Naturalis (natural magic) is the main work of the Neapolitan scholar Giambattista Della Porta, first published in 1558 in four books and then in 1586 in twenty books. It is the compilation of fantastic phenomena and beliefs he collected during his life and that he has tried to wrest from the divinatory magic by giving them a naturalistic justification or by legitimizing them by classic literary references.

The first edition of Magia Naturalis dates from 1558 in Naples1,2 (then Antwerp in 1560), while Della Porta was only twenty-three years old. From an early age, with the help of his preceptors, he hunts for surprising, wonderful, and even miraculous facts, to review them in order to tear them away from popular superstition and put them back to their proper place within the natural philosophy.

The Magia Naturalis is not a book of magic spells but merely an anthology of natural wonders written at a time when science was still in its infancy.

Download the scan of the original book here as a free PDF e-book (428 pages/39 MB):

PDF ebook downloadNatural Magick


Ten books for this summer

Posted on | June 8, 2018 | No Comments

Some of you have asked me if I read all the books I post here on the site. I do not. I don’t even think that would be possible in my lifetime because of the number of books. But I have made a selection for myself for this summer to catch up, and I would like to share it with you and hear your comments.

Mastering the core teachings of the BuddhaFirst of all, I have been looking forward to reading ‘Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha’ by Daniel M. Ingram again, one of the first books I uploaded here back in 2010. Find it here: https://www.holybooks.com/mastering-the-core-teachings-of-the-buddha/



Beelzebub Gurdjieff pdf free ebook coverGurdjieff’s work “Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson” or “An Objectively Impartial Criticism of the Life of Man” is also on my list. I must admit I have tried several times to start, but it is tough. I have the print version and I will bring it with me on a road trip to the Balkans in a few weeks. Find it here: https://www.holybooks.com/beelzebubs-tales-grandson-gurdjieff/


Gitanjali Song OfferingsGitanjali – Song Offerings. Next on the list is one of the latest additions to holybooks.com, the work that paved the way for to the Nobel Prize for Rabindranath Tagore. You can download the poetic masterpiece, Gitanjali – Song Offerings, here: https://www.holybooks.com/gitanjali-song-offerings/



Samayasara or Nature of Self is a classic Jain discussion about the nature of the self and its relation to karma and moksha, meaning ultimate liberation or enlightenment. Get it here: https://www.holybooks.com/samayasara-or-nature-of-self/



The desert fathers early christianity

Fathers of the Desert was first published in English in 1867. The book describes the beliefs, lives, and practices of a number of individual desert fathers and groups like the Anchorites. Download it here: https://www.holybooks.com/fathers-of-the-desert-vol-iii/



The Wisdom of VedantaThe Wisdom of Vedanta with the subtitle “An Introduction To The Philosophy of Nondualism” by Swami Abhayananda is also one of the books that I have had on my list for too long now. Time to read it: https://www.holybooks.com/wisdom-vedanta-introduction-philosophy-nondualism/



Masnavi-I Ma’navi: The title of Rumi’s masterwork Masnavi-I Ma’navi means “Rhyming Couplets of Profound Spiritual Meaning.” It is a is a poetic collection of rambling anecdotes and stories derived from the Quranhadith sources, and everyday tales. Get your digital copy over here: https://www.holybooks.com/masnavi-manavi-ebook-teachings-rumi/



Hunger Knut HamsunHunger. And from my own neighborhood, Hunger, by Knut Hamsun. Knut Hamsun was a Norwegian author, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1920 – not the least for this work about mental, spiritual and physical decay. If you dare: https://www.holybooks.com/hunger-knut-hamsung/



Kahlil Gibran novels online pdf ebookSix short stories. Kahlil Gibran is mostly known for his work, The Prophet, and The Madman, but he also wrote some interesting shorter novels. Pure reading pleasure, right here: https://www.holybooks.com/short-stories-kahlil-gibran/



I am not good at top ten lists, but my SEO-friend says that is what the kids want nowadays. However, I have four candidates for number ten:

Appearance and Reality by F.H. Bradley


The Open Secret – by Tony Parson

Human, All Too Human – A Book for Free Spirits – Nietzsche


Joyous Cosmology by Alan Watts

I wish you all a Joyous summer :-)

Ye Magick Mirrour of Old Japan

Posted on | June 7, 2018 | No Comments

Ye Magick Mirrour of Old JapanYe Magick Mirrour of Old Japan is a very special little book about the Japanese tradition of sacred mirrors. The book was privately printed in 97 copies and it is based on a discourse delivered at a Meeting of the Sette holden at Limmer’s Hotel (from where we also got the Limmer’s Gin Punch) on Friday, December 2, 1892.

In Japan mirrors had a peculiar place in society and spirituality. Mirrors were often decorated and surrounded with flowers like we see icons from the West decorated, and some of them are told to have magical properties. This book digs into the special properties. It seems that due to an old technique some Japanese mirrors can present patterns or images, not to the onlooker but at the mirror’s reflection in the room, if the light source is just right.

Download Ye Magick Mirrour of Old Japan here as a free PDF e-book (109 pages/4.87MB):

PDF ebook download Ye Magick Mirrour of Old Japan




The Middle Theory – A Guide to balance

Posted on | June 1, 2018 | 1 Comment

The Middle Theory

The Middle Theory – A Guide to Balance. The knowledge contained in The Middle Theory was not derived from research and experimentation; it was sparked by a sudden shift in consciousness that the author, Deshon M. Fox, experienced shortly after his mother died of cancer. From the book:

Turning our attention to our understanding of human consciousness, it stands to reason that balance—in this case, the balance of awareness—results in the attainment of an ideal state of consciousness. This ideal state would, no doubt, elevate our thinking, bring focus and clarity to our actions, and sensitize us to the promptings of our higher nature. Despite life’s inevitable ups and downs, the net result of sustaining this state of awareness would be enduring happiness. Do we not yearn for this?


The Middle Theory contains sweeping insights and practical approaches that can guide us to this enlightening place. Download the free PDF e-book here (168 pages/1.04MB)

PDF ebook downloadThe Middle Theory – A Guide to balance

Gitanjali – Song Offerings

Posted on | May 16, 2018 | No Comments

Gitanjali Song Offerings

Gitanjali – Song Offerings is the magnum opus of Rabindranath Tagore and the work that gave him the Nobel Prize.  This is the English translation, Tagore wrote in Bengali and translated to English himself. The book consists of 103 poems rooted in the ancient spiritual wisdom of India. Most of the poems found in Gitanjali are prayers written when Rabindranath Tagore experienced difficult times, he lost both his father, wife, a daughter and a son in a short time. This pain and deep devotion to God are captured in the moving prose-verses of Gitanjali, which Tagore dedicated as “Song Offerings”. One of the most cited verses is Where the mind is without fear: 

Where the mind is without fear

and the head is held high;

Where knowledge is free;

Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls;

Where words come out from the depth of truth;

Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection;

Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit;

Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought and action —

Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.

Rabindranath Tagore

Gitanjali - Song Offerings
Gitanjali – Song Offerings is the magnum opus of Rabindranath Tagore and the work that gave him the Nobel Prize.
Written by: Rabindranath Tagore
Published by: The Macmillian Company
Edition: First English
ISBN: None
Available in: Ebook

Download the Gitanjali here (142 pages):

PDF ebook downloadGitanjali Song Offerings

Biography of Rabindranath Tagore

Posted on | May 12, 2018 | 1 Comment

Rabindranath Tagore biography PDFRabindranath Tagore – Poet and Dramatist is the biography of Rabindranath Tagore (7 May 1861 – 7 August 1941) by Edward Thompson. Rabindranath Tagore received the Nobel Price in literature in 1913, as the first Asian to receive the price, and second after Roosevelt outside Europe. He was awarded for his numerous poems, inspired by medieval Indian literature and ancient Hindu spiritual verses, the atavistic mysticism of Vyasa among others. Rabindranath Tagore is most known for his poetic work Gitanjali – Song Offering, but he also wrote thousands of songs, short stories and he drew hundreds of paintings among other artistic expressions. His rise to fame in India and abroad let him meet with the most influential individuals of the time, among them Albert Einstein and he became a close friend of Mahatma Gandhi, with who he shared political views on the British supremacy and Indian nationalism. Rabindranath Tagore’s original gold Nobel Prize from 1913 was stolen from a safety vault from the Visva-Bharati University in March 2004. –  Fun fact:  did you know, the next Indian Nobel Prize winner from 1914, Kailash Satyarthi, had his statue stolen in 2017?

Rabindranath Tagore - Poet and Dramatis
Rabindranath Tagore – Poet and Dramatist is the biography of the Nobel Prize-winning Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore (7 May 1861 – 7 August 1941) by Edward Thompson.
Written by: Edward Thompson
Published by: RDDHI-INDIA
Edition: Rddhi edition. 1979, with a new appendix added by Sankha Ghosh
ISBN: None
Available in: Ebook

Download the biography of Rabindranath Tagore here (343 pages/7.MB):

PDF ebook downloadRabindranath Tagore Poet And Dramatist



Fundamental Philosophy

Posted on | May 10, 2018 | No Comments

Fundamental PhilosophyFundamental Philosophy by Walter Wilson. I am so pleased every time a writer asks me for help to publish their works for a broader audience. During the last couple of weeks, this happened a couple of times. Recently Walter Wilson asked me to post his book about Fundamental Philosophy here and here it is: “The Most Scientific Law Of Knowing and Seeing, The Key to Constant Perfect Creativity In All Professional Fields and All Ways Of Life”.

The book draws on the author’s personal spiritual experiences from which he deduces general teachings and step-by-step paths to further enlightenment. Download the free e-book here (47 pages/1.1MB):

PDF ebook downloadFundamental Philosophy

The Buddha’s Teachings – An Introduction

Posted on | May 8, 2018 | 1 Comment

Buddhas Teachings a free PDF e-book. The Buddha’s Teachings – An Introduction by Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu is a short but precise biography of The Buddhas life and the events that led to his enlightenment and teachings. The book describes key concepts such as Samsara, rebirth, the handful of leaves, the noble truths, Nirvana and the importance of generosity in Buddhism. From the book:

The Buddha said that he simply points out the path to true happiness. You, yourself, have to follow the path. The results you get will have to depend on the effort you put into mastering the Buddha’s skills. The more skillful your actions, the more reliable and harmless the happiness they bring you—all the way to a happiness totally free from conditions, beyond the dimensions of the cosmos, a happiness that totally ends suffering. It’s up to you to decide if your happiness is important enough to test these claims and if you are willing to train yourself in the skills required to make yourself a reliable judge of the test.

Download The Buddha’s Teachings – An Introduction (33 pages/350KB):

PDF ebook downloadBuddhas Teachings


Butterflies are Free to Fly – A New and Radical Approach To Spiritual Evolution

Posted on | May 7, 2018 | No Comments

Butterflies are Free to FlyButterflies are Free to Fly with the subtitle A New and Radical Approach To Spiritual Evolution by Stephen Davis was published in 2010 freely for non-commercial purposes.

The book examines how topics such as quantum physics and recent scientific experiments are radically changing our understanding of life, the nature of our reality, and our spirituality. The book proposes a new model for the way our universe works and practical steps toward personal fulfillment and joy and peace of mind.

Download the free e-book Butterflies are Free to Fly here (300 pages/3.5MB):

PDF ebook downloadButterflies are Free to Fly

The book of spirits

Posted on | May 5, 2018 | 1 Comment

The book of spirits Free PDF e-bookThe Book of Spirits was sent to me by the author last week. It is a short book he wrote for himself in order to “help me a little through this strange
rabbit-hole we call life.” The author, his real name is not Funky Looking Monkey, writes us:
“Reality is constant and always changing. I am always creating my reality consciously and subconsciously. This book gives an introduction to how we can do so more consciously. Yet, the purpose of the book is not to give the sensation of having all answers but to trigger curiosity and questions and create an open and safe space for you and me to freely explore our amazing minds and beings.”
Download the free PDF e-book here (7 pages/200kb):

PDF ebook downloadThe book of spirits

Holybooks just got a little sister

Posted on | April 24, 2018 | No Comments

Greatest Adventurers e-books about explorersWhen I am looking for new additions to Holybooks.com, I often come across books in another niche I am very keen on. Books about adventurers, explorers, and logbooks from the travels in the ages of discovery. https://www.greatestadventurers.com is the new home for those works.

So far only a handful books have been uploaded, but rest assured, more will come. The concept is the same as her on Holybooks.com, free PDF e-books which all have reached the Public Domain (or have been donated to the site by the rightsholders), meaning they can be read and distributed freely. Please take a look at https://www.greatestadventurers.com and let me know what you think. Suggestions for new books are welcome.

The Craft of the Heart by Ajaan Lee Dhammadharo

Posted on | April 18, 2018 | No Comments

The Craft of the Heart free PDF e-book on Buddhism

The Craft of the Heart by Ajaan Lee Dhammadharo gives the full range of his teachings on the practice of the Buddha’s craft, from the observance of the five precepts to the attainment of total liberation. Even though the chapters are designed for different readers at different stages the reader is advised to read, not judgmentally, but judiciously—taking whatever is useful for his or her own practice, and leaving the rest for others. The structure of the book, with its two overlapping parts, is explained by the fact that the two parts were originally written and published separately, Part II appearing in 1936 as The Training of the Heart, and Part I the following year as Precepts for Laypeople. In 1939 Ajaan Lee revised and expanded both parts, putting them together as self-sufficient but complementary halves of a single volume. Later, in the early 1950’s, he revised the book once more.

Download the full lenght PDF e-book The Craft of the Heart here (136 pages/1.5MB):

The Craft of the Heart

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