Resources

There are an insane amount of things, blogs, books, articles, religions, philosophies, et cetera that inspire me. This list comprises a lot of those but not all. I'll do my best to put them all down as I find more. Every book on the I've read at least once. Every blog I try to visit regularly.

Spark Joy

Marie Kondo's The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up is what started me on the journey to live a simpler life.

Books

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

The book that started my journey and still inspires me to this day. In fact, I probably read this book about once every six months. The thoughts and values in this book are incredibly Japanese but much of the content still helps in the western lifestyle.

Spark Joy by Marie Kondo

The companion book to The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. This book is an illustrated guide to the KonMari method and really should be read only after The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. The cover of the book even says, "Companion to the #1 New York Times best-selling [book]".

Minimalist Living

Minimalist living is about living with less so you can use more energy on the important things like relationships and living the life you want. Here is a list of posts, blogs, and resources pertaining to the minimalist lifestyle.

Books

The Joy of Less by Francine Jay

A book about starting out on minimalist living. It goes over philosophy and sets out steps to rid yourself of a consumerist lifestyle. I'm not a fan of the writing since it comes off more like a blog because the writer has a popular blog, Miss Minimalist.

Blogs and Websites

The Minimalists

Two guys who literally wrote a book on the minimalist lifestyle. They've been sharing their work since 2011 and have a following of over 4 million. Needless to say, they know a bit about minimalism.

Minimalism FAQ

A list of questions pertaining to minimalism and minimalist living.

Buddhism

I see Buddhism as a philosophy rather than religion. It can be one if you want it to but there are many Christians, Muslims, and Atheists that practice Buddhism. So here's a list of blogs, books, and other resources I find helpful.

Books

The Beginner's Guide to Zen Buddhism by Jean Smith

Jean Smith is a practicing Zen Buddhist master and writes from the perspective on one whose given their life to Buddhism. This book isn't about simply adding Buddhism into your life but assumes you are ready to throw yourself fully into the practice of Buddhism and meditation.

The Way of Zen by Alan Watts

Alan Watts is credited with helping Zen Buddhism and Asian philosophies find their way into western cultures. This book is gives a brief history of Buddhism and the effects of Taoism on Zen.

Blogs and Websites

Zen Habits

A blog on the practice of Zen Buddhism and meditation.

Jack Kornfield

The official website of Jack Kornfield, a celebrated teacher and Buddhist leader. He's written many illuminating books and articles, many of which are found on his site.

Japan

I'm rather obsessed with Japanese culture and history, so this makes up a lot of my philosophy and love on minimalist designs. I love reading about Japanese culture as well as watching anything I can find.

Books

The Rising Sun: The Decline & Fall of the Japanese Empire, 1936-45 by John Toland

A incredibly detailed book on the Japan's part in World War II. This book is epic. I mean that in the sense of how detailed and long it is. It might be a bit dry for some but it does a good job at showing the why in Japan reason for war. Toland does an amazing job at staying neutral but his writing does come off as a bit dramatic.

The Book of Yokai: Mysterious Creatures of Japanese Folklore by Michael Dylan Foster, Shinonome Kijin (Illustrations)

I love Japanese folklore monsters or yokai. Foster is an asian studies professor and it shows in this book. The tone is scholarly rather than for the masses. This book isn't a casual glance at yokai nor does it focus on pop cultural references. The look at yokai is from a historical and sociological perspective. This book is only for the hardcore Japanese culture buff.

Blogs and Websites

Tofugu

A blog focused on Japanese culture, language, and history. It's a fun website that has a lot of knowledge and doesn't take itself seriously.

GaijinPot

A site that focuses on living in Japan. They have links for studying and learning Japanese as well as news, jobs boards, and miscellaneous things.

Japanese Language Tools

WaniKani

A kanji learning tool by the people who run Tofugu. It helps learn kanji by building up on the kanji components and presenting them at time intervals. This is the best kanji learning tools I've ever come across.

Erin's Challenge

This website provides free video and study guides based on an ongoing story of an exchange student in a Japanese high school. This is a great resource for listening practice.

NHK Easy News

NHK has many resources for those learning Japanese. This is news written in an easier style using easy kanji. It's great for beginners or those who need Japanese news but aren't wonderful in their kanji reading.