THE HIDDEN CONNECTIONS (Fritjof Kapra)
"A rich resource that should be widely drawn upon... The author has courageously put together a real tract for our times." -Nature
"A cool and rational analysis for those feeling confused or helpless in the face of an unpredictable future...This is a book could that could make a difference." -The Guardian
"An impressive, interesting book." -The Times
Contemporary scientific discoveries indicate that all of life - from the most primitive cells, up to human societies, corporations and nation-states, even the global economy - is organized along the same basic patterns and principles: those of the network. However, the new global economy differs in important aspects from the networks of life: whereas everything in a living network has a function, globalism ignores all that cannot give it an immediate profit, creating great armies of the excluded.
The global financial network also relies on advanced information technologies - it is shaped by machines, and the resulting economic, social and cultural environment is not life-enhancing but life-degrading, in both a social and an ecological sense. This text demonstrates how tightly humans are connected with the fabric of life and makes it clear that it is imperative to organize the world according to a different set of values and beliefs, not only for the well-being of human organizations, but for the survival and sustainability of humanity as a whole.
THE SONG OF THE DODO (David Quammen)
"Magnificient... intelligent, playful... an epic adventure of the mind and spirit... Here is what a book can be" -New York Times Book Review
Winner of the John Burroughs Medal for Natural History Writing and the NY Public Library award for Excellence in Journalism.
Interweaving personal observation, scientific theory and history, The Song of the Dodo examines the mysteries of evolution and extinction as they have been illuminated by the study of islands. Their isolation makes them the natural laboratories of evolutionary extravagance, as seen in the dragons of Komodo, the elephant birds of Madagascar, adn the Giant Tortoises of Galapagos and Aldabra. But the dark message of island studies is that isolated bits of ecosystem, whether natural or man-made, are also hotbeds of extinction.
As the world's landscapes, from Tasmania to the Amazon rainforests to Yellowstone are being carved into island-like fragments by human activity, the implications of this knowledge are more urgent than ever. An unforgettable scientific adventure, this beautifully written book takes the reader of a globe-circling tour of wild places and extraordinary ideas.
ISLAND AFRICA: EVOLUTION OF AFRICA'S ANIMALS AND PLANTS (Jonathan Kingdon)
This text examines the flora and fauna of the African continent by viewing it as a complex mosaic of landlocked islands; islands which vary from isolated forests in oceans of grassland to lakes in seas of land. Each of these islands represents a snapshot of millions of years of evolution. The author highlights representative species, and as the reader is led around continental Africa, a pattern emerges which provides a deeper understanding of the complexity of the biology of Africa. He considers the insularity of ecosystems resulting from topography and man-made islands--reserves and parks. Heavily illustrated with his own drawings, paintings and photographs. The author was born in Tanzania and now teachers at Oxford University.
CONSILIENCE: THE UNITY OF KNOWLEDGE (Edward O. Wilson)
"A dazzling journey across the sciences and humanities in search of deep laws to unite them." -The Wall Street Journal
"An original work of synthesis... a program of unrivalled ambition: to unify all the major branches of knowledge - sociology, the arts and religion - under the banner of science. " -The New York Times
One of our greatest living scientists and the winner of two Pulitzer Prizes for On Human Nature and The Ants, gives us a work of visionary importance that may be the crowning achievement of his career. In Consilience (a word that originally meant "jumping together"), Edward O. Wilson renews the Enlightenment's search for a unified theory of knowledge in disciplines that range from physics to biology, the social sciences and the humanities.
Using the natural sciences as his model, Wilson forges dramatic links between fields. He explores the chemistry of the mind and the genetic bases of culture. He postulates the biological principles underlying works of art from cave-drawings to Lolita. Presenting the latest findings in prose of wonderful clarity and oratorical eloquence, and synthesizing it into a dazzling whole, Consilience is science in the path-clearing traditions of Newton, Einstein, and Richard Feynman.
THE DREAM OF THE EARTH (Thomas Berry)
A seminal text in environmental theory. Thomas Berry provides the ethical guidance needed to move beyond exploitation of the Earth toward a vision of a restorative, creative relationship with the natural world. Arguing that our immediate danger is not nuclear war but industrial plundering; our entire society, he argues, is trapped in a closed cycle of production and consumption. Berry points out that our perception of the earth is the product of cultural conditioning, and that most of us fail to think of ourselves as a species but rather as national, ethnic, religious or economic groups. Describing education as "a process of cultural coding somewhat parallel to genetic coding," he proposes a curriculum based on awareness of the earth.
THE HEALING WISDOM OF AFRICA (Malidoma Some)
"An amazing bridge over the chasm of modern isolation. Malidoma reawakens the rituals of the heart, This is profound, brilliant and accessible medicine for us all" -Jack Kornfield
"Profoundly wise and fascinating..." -Alice Walker
Written by a gifted medicine man of the Dagara Tribe in Burkina Faso in West Africa who also holds three master's degrees and two doctorates, this book argues that traditional ways of life show us the way to an intimate relationship with the natural world that both surrounds us and is within us. This acclaimed book is the most distinctive and complete study of the role ritual plays in the lives of African people and the role it can play for seekers in the West.
A fascinating, detailed journey through the traditional healing practices of West Africa by a beloved shaman and scholar whose name in his native language means "Be friends with the stranger".
THE COSMIC SERPENT (Jeremy Narby)
"A thoroughly enjoyable read." -The Sunday Times
"The Cosmic Serpent is a spellbinding, scholarly tour de force that may presage a major paradigm shift in the Western view of reality." -Michael Harner, President, Foundation for Shamanic Studies, and author of The Way of the Shaman
A personal adventure, a fascinating study of anthropology and ethnopharmacology, and, most important, a revolutionary look at how intelligence and consciousness come into being. This adventure in science and imagination, which the Medical Tribune said might herald "a Copernican revolution for the life sciences", leads the reader through unexplored jungles and uncharted aspects of mind to the heart of knowledge.
In a first-person narrative of scientific discovery that opens new perspectives on biology, anthropology, and the limits of rationalism, The Cosmic Serpent reveals how startlingly different the world around us appears when we open our minds to it.