Magician | Writer | Author | Guide
Daniel Bruce Levin
I am dedicated to finding the peace and contentment that comes from truly knowing yourself. My mission has become to hold the space for others to find that peace too.
I was one day away from being ordained a Rabbi in Jerusalem, Israel.
I was a Monk in a monastery in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains for 10 years.
I was the Director of Business Development at Hay House and played a big part in helping it grow from $3 million to $100 million over the next 10 years.
I am a rare blend of mystic and business guy, and I believe it is my ability to see things from different perspectives that draws people, companies, and governments to work with me. Showing people how to see differently is, quite frankly, what brings me joy.
I am the author of THE MOSAIC, a beautiful fable that touches the heart and soothes the soul, but to this day, I feels the space between the words is more important than the story.
You can contact me through my website: www.TheMosaicOnline.com
Of course, like every other kid growing up in the era of the comic book, I loved reading comics about my superheroes: Thor; Spiderman; Captain America and The Fantastic Four. I was always drawn to things that were not of this world. That was also reflected in the books I choose to read.
I remember the first time my mother gave me money to go to the bookstore and buy a book, I came home with was The Gift of Prophecy.
My 10 Best
A Gift of Prophecy by Jeane Dixon
The moment I came home with this book, my mother packed me into the car and made me return it. I think I was four years old.
Jeane Dixon was a Psychic who could predict the future and I desperately wanted to know how to do that (beware of what you wish for). But I went with my mother and listened to her as she told the bookstore owner a thing or two about how could he let a four-year-old boy bring this book home to read.
What he didn’t say to my mother is that he had watched me pick out that book and then go and sit mesmerized by the locked case of Aleister Crowley books. I never bought one of those books, but to this day when I walk into a new age bookstore, I am still drawn to them.
Siddhartha by Herman Hesse
I grew up in the 60’s and 70’s; a time of real social change. My own feeling that there was something more to life than just making money led me to a small experimental school outside of LA, named Pitzer College.
My first semester there, my mind was blown open. Meeting people who thought like me, experiencing the drug scene, the music of the counter-culture, opened me to philosophy, and Eastern philosophy more particularly. I read German philosopher, Martin Heidegger, and Chilean Poet Pablo Naruda, but it was the simplicity of Hermann Hesse in this book, Siddhartha, that changed me.
Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda
This book changed my life.
Its words had power and the stories it told awakened me, but it was the vibration that I felt permeating from within its pages, that proved to me what I was reading in the book was real.
A must-read for anyone interested in spirituality.
Be Here Now by Ram Dass
BAM!!!!!! This book became my companion, sitting with me through my meditations and walking with me into a reality I could see but not understand.
Baba Ram Dass (Richard Alpert) became a voice for a nation of people who met at the intersection between psychedelics and spirituality. It was his desire to experience the same experience he had on LSD in regular day to day life that helped lead me on that same quest.
The Tao Te Ching by Lao Tsu
“The Tao that can be told is not the Eternal Tao.”
Life was so complicated for me, and this book was so simple. Written in poetry of words and images, the truths it speaks are so simple, and yet so counter-intuitive to the way I was living my life.
“Do nothing, and everything will return to balance.”
These are words that help me every day I live. This is a book to be cherished, to be sat with over time, and to return to over and over and over again to allow its knowledge to seep into my soul.
Zen Mind, Beginners Mind by Shunyu Suzuki
Even more than the book itself, I loved this book’s title. The book, a beautiful work on the simplicity of the Zen practice to me, was summed up by the four words in its title.
Ah, the beginner’s mind, filled with all of its excitement, anticipation, and fear of the unknown gives life a new awareness. So often I would find myself doing the same thing over and over and watching how my life had become rote.
Enter: Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind. In this simple image, a new practice emerged of looking at things I had seen one thousand times before as if I had never ever seen them. Intoxicating practice.
The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge by Carlos Castaneda
As I sit and think about this book now, I think it is a weird book to enter into my 10 Best List, but this book, like every other one on the list, was incredibly influential to me at a time in my life when I needed guidance.
I was drawn to this book when I started to explore with Peyote and Mescaline. I had visions of Shamans, and as I later read the words of Castaneda, everything he said made the experiences I was having make more sense.
The more I read, the more I wanted to return to the experiences. On my hitchhiking travels around the world, I am sure I met quite a few Shamans who remained veiled to me but helped me find my way.
When we open to the world, the world opens to us.
The I Ching
I was always drawn to things that were unexplainable. To think that I could toss three coins into the air six times and the configuration they would give me would perfectly answer my question was way beyond my understanding. But, lo and behold, every time I did, the answers I received were not only insightful but accurate.
For many years, in college and while hitchhiking around the world, I carried this book in my bedroll with my three “I Ching coins.” Between pencil drawings of things I saw and readings for others on street corners all around the world, I was quite the sight to behold. Locals would bring me wine, cheese, and a loaf of bread and we would sit together laughing for hours. Ahhh, the good old days.
The Bhagavad Vita
Often, if I get only one idea or feeling from a book, it is well worth the investment of time and money. The Bhagavad Gita (the Bible of the East) is a book packed with hundreds of insights. It is a seminal book for anyone on a spiritual journey as it outlines in the imagery of a battlefield what we experience on the battlefield of life.
In one such story, Krishna asks both the 5 Pandava brothers (the five qualities of good) and the army of evil who they want to have on their side. “Do you want all of the soldiers in the world, those tried and true in battle or do you want me, Krishna?”
The army of evil chooses the soldiers, and the Pandovas choose Krishna. Of course, the Pandovas win the battle because with God on your side you cannot lose. This story has stayed with me for years.
The Mosaic by Daniel Bruce Levin
I tried hard not to include my book, but the more I said no, the more the voice within me said to include it. This book took me 3 years to write when I thought it would take 2-3 months. My muse helped me and as good as I thought it was going, it just never got to the place where it needed to be.
Finally, I sat with it and asked, “Why are you not letting this come out?” Immediately, I heard the characters in the book answer me. They said, “We do not want to say what you are trying to have us say. We want you to listen to what we are saying and just say that.” From that point on, the book finished itself within about 2-3 months.
Everything is the world is speaking to us if we would only listen. The story of The Mosaic is charming, but it is the story between the words that is what is transformative. What does that space say to you?