Just finished reading:
The Harvard Psychedelic Club: How Four Visionaries Killed the Fifties and Ushered in a New Age for America.
This is the inside story of Timothy Leary, Richard Alpert, Andrew Weil and others who kicked off much of the 60’s with their interests in mind-bending drugs, self-introspection and holistic health. These stories are unfamiliar to most who didn’t live through that era. I’m not even sure that those who did not directly experience some of these times would be able to graph many of the changes which these folks spearheaded.
I’ll leave it at this – it’s a great book for anyone with interest in the 60’s. As the author notes, many of the concepts put forward by these pioneers are now part of everyday life – from the mind-body connection to the meditative spirit – from the idea that we are spiritual creatures to the importance of community and from the idea of Earth Day and Environmentalism to the ideas of sustainability….most of it hit the greater culture in the crucible of those times.
Podcasts: I really enjoy listening to certain episodes of NPR’s Fresh Air. Even then the particular subject is not something which seems of interest, listening through can be very educational. One recent episode detailed how one of the leaders of the Skinhead movement become “converted” back to a normal and sane member of society – fascinating!
Another interest of my is innovation and entrepreneurship, especially in the fields of technology (google, etc.) and energy (anything from clean water to clean energy).
I highly recommend a podcast series put out by Stanford University called Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders. This series features some of the top minds in the world giving talks to Stanford students. Listening to these audio programs will immediately increase both your IQ and your optimism!