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Summary

For the millions of people who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’ new book is a guide to meditation as a rational spiritual practice informed by neuroscience and psychology.

From best-selling author, neuroscientist, and "new atheist" Sam Harris, Waking Up is for the increasingly large numbers of people who follow no religion, but who suspect that Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history could not have all been epileptics, schizophrenics, or frauds. Throughout the book, Harris argues that there are important truths to be found in the experiences of such contemplatives - and, therefore, that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow.

Waking Up is part seeker’s memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris - a scientist, philosopher, and famous sceptic - could write it.

©2014 Sam Harris (P)2014 Simon & Schuster, Inc. 2014, published in the UK by Random House Audiobooks

What members say

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This is Important.

Possibly one of the most important book you can read about spirituality today.
Performance wise is also top level. I have read Sam's books and follewed him for some time on YT, blog and podcasts. I knew the book will be of the highest quality but the audiobook somehow enhanced the experience even more. Listening to Sam's voice is so much better than merly reading the book in your own voice inside your head...
This is an ultimate journey to spirituality guided by one of the most important figure in line of scientific and spiritual/religion field.
You simply cannot afford to miss it.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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The most important book of the modern era

It should be a legal requirement that young adults read this book. Harris calmy tears apart the very foundation of what people think it is to experience life.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Enlightening listen

Beyond the clear and eloquent discussion on spirituality from a scientific perspective, Sam Harris' discourse on consciousness is presented with the open-mindedness and scientific rigour one would expect from him.

I was already on his side as it were before the listen, but also as usual there are many passages of worthy insights to take from Sam's experiences.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Waking Up!

Clear, concise, enlightening this is a must read for those becoming aware of their journey.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Thought changing, life changing. Informative

Sams reading lends itself well to the subject matter. I'm very glad he was the one to read it. I've not looked greatly into meditation before but have had slight but not mindful interest in it. I've seen slight changes in my mood whilst enjoying this book over the past week, possibly due to a concious effort to be more mindfull of moods during my waking life. Only a couple of times did I try some nornal meditation, which was interesting though I'm unsure if I just fell asleep as I forgot where i was for a time it was just nothingness, so i think it was asleep and not actual mediation. Anyway I will continue to be mindfull and would like to thank sam Harris for his honesty and logical thinking. Not being scared off from topics that might cause most to stear away. Very much appreciated. I would say if your sceptical, its a good reason to try this book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Thank you Sam Harris

This book is truly brilliant, Sam's idea that a spiritual life can be enjoyed in a secular way is as beneficial as it is important. I don't know if you will ever read this Sam but thank you for helping me sort through the knots in my mind and find peace.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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A solid case for a reasonable spirituality

Sam makes a strong and well-argued case for a a thoroughly reasonable spirituality with his uniquely humorous sober candour. He gently nudges you in to a desire to explore..

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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The way ahead

Excellent - but not quite a how to do it. I'm still in the departure lounge, but maybe that was Sam Harris's aim.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Absolutely fantastic

I listened to this while reading the physical book and it was fantastic all round.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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An interesting look at what makes you you...

Very dense but helpful if you're suffering some kind of existential funk. If you meditate, think the idea of yourself is an illusion or just want to explore the mind you could do worse than this book.

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  • srocha
  • 08-03-15

Sam Harris has outdone himself

Great writing by a great mind.
As usual Harris offers a new perspective on things, one which would have been extremely difficult to arrive by oneself.
Thanks Sam, I've enjoyed it thoroughly.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert
  • 30-03-15

wow

Simply great. A balanced, useful, contemporary synthesis of philosophy, neuroscience, and contemplative methodology.

Sam Harris is possibly the most reasonable man alive.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Sarah
  • 01-01-18

A clear headed look at spirituality

I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for spiritual fulfilment without religion. Sam Harris talks about the benefits of a contemplative life with insight and reason, identifying and cutting through the mumbo jumbo of religious doctrines.

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  • Brian
  • 11-10-17

Eloquently written

Highly recommended. A wonderful book that articulates beautifully how Sam has come to observe the relationship between mind, body, and spirit. Sam also challenges us to question the legitimacy of our ideas, and to remove those that do not benefit all humanity. Worth a second, and a third listen.

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  • RomulusRom
  • 27-08-17

A new way of looking at spirituality

This short, but excellent audiobook was exactly right for someone like me. I have always been intrigued by the power of the mind, having spent a lot of years trying out lucid dreaming and dabbling in types of meditation and hypnosis. Unfortunately, a lot of times when researching said topics, you get to handle unwanted mumbo-jumbo about how the experiences are deeply religious or transcendental beyond what our minds can grasp.

Sam Harris takes an entirely different approach, luckily. He starts with the mind. With consciousness, and the self. He writes about "spirituality" from experience and experimentation, firmly rooted in science and objective research. And that's exactly what is needed in a subject as this: someone who can approach this from both sides, and find a middle ground. The science of Zen, as it were.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 22-08-17

interesting but not that helpful.

very scientificly structured which I am happy about and well researched and methodical.

it does not exactly capture your mind or thoughts though.

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  • Sean
  • 16-08-17

Great read

Insightful, well structured and logical. Which given the topic is no easy task. The task of becoming a better person is greatly enhanced from reading this book

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  • emma
  • 26-03-17

I have now awoken!

This book is well thought through and written. After practicing mindfulness for 10 years - struggling in many different ways. I now realize that my struggles were with the self of myself. Your precise instruction has allowed me to understand and experience selflessness/non duality. I now see everything differently! Thank you Sam Harris for writing this book.

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  • O. R. Jones
  • 28-01-17

I think this book might change my life

Never really thought about meditation seriously until after listening to this book. Thank you Sam.

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  • Jacques Smuts
  • 18-06-16

Life changing

Literally life changing. I don't think I've said that of any book or movie just read it.