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Waking Up

Narrated by: Sam Harris
Length: 5 hrs and 51 mins
4.6 out of 5 stars (1,920 ratings)

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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

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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.

13 people found this helpful

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Wonderful!

I never thought an atheist would write such a helpful perspective on spirituality. I'm not an atheist and have never understood how you could be one and be interested or truly open to spirituality but this book proved me wrong. I appreciated his insight and felt it helped me appreciate atheists more.

5 people found this 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.

5 people found this helpful

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Waking Up!

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

3 people found this 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.

6 people found this helpful

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Starting Again

Refreshingly free from the self aggrandisement and spiritually justified obfuscation that so often accompanies spiritual teachers, Sam Harris shines his laser-like mind onto the most intractable questions the modern spiritual seeker is likely to encounter: God, gurus, enlightenment, the self, life after death, right and wrong etc. That rarest of things, accomplished scientist and accomplished meditator, he brings a fresh perspective that, for this rather jaded spiritual seeker, is enough to dust-off the meditation stool to ‘start again’.

5 people found this 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 people found this 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 people found this helpful

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  • CP
  • 24-05-20

Outstanding. Essential reading.

One of, if not the most, important books I’ve ever came across. I urge you to give it a go.

1 person found this helpful

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Dull

not too sure what the point of this book is.... spend half your life meditating for a deeper insight...into what?...half a life you haven't lived!

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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 people found this 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 person found this helpful

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  • Kerry
  • 11-07-20

Enlightening

Sam's writing is incisive and lucid as always, with soothing narration. A short, illuminating read.

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  • James
  • 22-06-19

Life changing book for those who are both critical thinkers and open minded

It’s difficult to change your worldview. Generally, people don’t. We vote the same way as our parents. We have the same religion. The things that were real important to them are real important to us. Reading this book does require you to be ready to change your worldview. It also requires you to be open minded. This isn’t because it’s fantastical - in fact it’s the opposite - but Harris’ observations, based in empirical research as much as philosophy really do challenge the reader to think about life and our own minds differently. I think it will change my life.

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  • Jordan
  • 08-04-19

Transformative

The best secular approach to meditation and mind maintenance I've come across. A great addition to Sam's Waking Up app, as it explains a lot of the ideas he guides you through in a way that makes me want to revisit them.

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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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  • Corne Kruger
  • 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