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Books and DVD's

Stories of the Great Turning

Editors: Peter Reason & Melanie Newman with an Introduction by Joanna Macy

Here is a book of stories written by people who decided to act, in their own lives, in response to the challenges of our time, and found their own way to make a difference. They are not stories about celebrities or gurus of the environmental movement but honest accounts from people who share a concern for the world we live in and who, in the words of one of the contributors, “just got on with it”.

4663_SOTGT_Spine_Book_MockupIt is a book that takes the question, “What can I do?” and sets out to find some answers using one of our species’ most vital skills: the ability to tell stories in which to spread knowledge, ideas, inspiration and hope.

Read about the transformation of wasteland and the installation of water power, stories about reducing consumption and creating sustainable business, stories from people changing how they live their lives and the inner transformations this demands.

You can read  Joanna Macy’s introduction for FREE, from Resurgence & Ecologist

For more information about the book and how to order, goto or


"Active Hope" Comes Out 2012

ActiveHopeBookCover Active Hope: How to Face the Mess we're in without Going Crazy, co-authored with my long-time colleague Chris Johnstone of Bristol, England, aims to bring basic assumptions and ingredients of the Work That Reconnects to a mainstream readership. In the process some valuable new perspectives on the Work have emerged. A look at the Table of Contents can give you an idea of some.

In stores: New World Library or

Part One: The Great Turning
Chap 1: Three Stories of Our Time
Chap 2: Trusting the Spiral
Chap 3: Starting with Gratitude
Chap 4: Honoring Our Pain for the World

Part Two: Seeing with New Eyes
Chap 5: A Wider Sense of Self
Chap 6: A Different Kind of Power
Chap 7: A Richer Experience of Community
Chap 8: A Larger View of Time
Part Three: Going Forth
Chap 9: Catching an Inspiring Vision
Chap 10: Daring to Believe it is Possible
Chap 11: Building Support around You
Chap 12: Maintaining Energy and Enthusiasm
Chap 13: Strengthened by Uncertainty

Coming Back to Life: Practices to Reconnect Our Lives, Our World

Coming Back to Life: Practices to Reconnect Our Lives, Our World (NSP, 1998) Theory and methods of the group work my colleagues and I pioneered over the last quarter century. (see The Work That Reconnects) To order a copy, click here.


nuestravidacomogaia_cover2New Spanish language edition of Coming Back to Life translated by Mexican scholar-activist Adrián Villasenor-Galarza. Nuestra Vida como Gaia is now available online! (Dec. 2010)

(227 page pdf download)


Book CoverIn German, Die Reise ins lebendige Leben, Strategien zum Aufbau einer zukunftsfähignen Welt, translated by Norbert Gahbler, a leader in this work in Germany, who has interpreted for me for 20 years. This book includes practices newly developed since the U.S. edition. Published by Junfermann, and available through


Book CoverThe Russian translation is available online at Choose the Russian version.



Book CoverThe Portuguese translation: Nossa Vida Como Gaia, Práticas para a Reconexão de Nossas Vidas e de Nosso Mundo



Pass It On: Five Stories that Can Change the World

Joanna shares five stories from her more than 30 years of studying and practicing Buddhism and deep ecology. Gathered on her travels to India, Russia, Australia, and Tibet, these stories testify to Joanna Macy’s belief that either humankind awakens to a new and deeper understanding of our interconnectedness with its planet or risks losing it.

This is a revised edition in English of a lovely book that Norbert Gahbler and I originally brought out in German last year.

Parallax Press

Order it here

E-book Kindle Version also available

Also available in Taiwan.




Rilke's Book of Hours

Rilke's Book of Hours: Love Poems to God (Riverhead, 1996, 2006 with Anita Barrows)

My translation, with Anita Barrows, of Rainer Maria Rilke's Stundenbuch. These luminous verses, written a century ago when the poet was in his early twenties, have woven through my life, my thought. What a joy, at last, to render them in English. The newly-published Centenary Edition includes the original German text.

To order a copy, click here.

World as Lover, World as Self

World As Lover, World As Self - Courage for Global Justice and Ecological Renewal, Parallax Press, 2007.

This collection includes new thinking that guides my work, along with favorite portions of the original book, all freshly rewritten.

Order it here

E-book Kindle Version also available


The Work that Reconnects training DVD

The Work That Reconnects training DVD

Here is a visual tool for educators, clergy, helping professionals, and activists who wish to understand this work. It is also a training guide for those currently facilitating the work and for those who may be inspired to do so. You will see Joanna teaching the conceptual foundations of the work, including the Great Turning, systems theory, deep ecology, and despair work, as well as many of her favorite exercises. To these she adds for the viewer guidelines on critical aspects and choice points of the experiential work.

To order a set, click here.

If you experience difficulty playing the DVD on your computer, you'll find information at the bottom of this page for downloading a free, alternative DVD player program for Windows 9X, ME, 2000, and XP

The DVD is also available for immediate download or online viewing at

Thank you Dennis Rivers!


Thinking Like a Mountain: Towards A Council of All Beings

Thinking Like a Mountain: Towards A Council of All Beings (with John Seed, Arne Naess, and Pat Fleming; New Catalyst Books, 2007)

With poems, artwork, meditations, and essays, this collection provides inspiration and instructions for leading deep ecology work.

To order a copy, click here.


DVD Player Help

Download Free DVD and Media Player for Windows Computers
Technical Support Page

    • * When your browser asks you what to do with the downloaded file, select "Save" (your browser's wording may vary) and pick an appropriate folder. If that doesn't work for some reason, on Windows you can click the link with the second mouse button (right click) to get the pop-up menu and select "Save Target As..." (again, the wording may vary).

  • Most Windows computers come with already installed DVD-player software. But these progams may or may not play every DVD you insert into your computer. Listed below are links that will provide you with Media Player Classic, a free, open-source, full-featured media player that should be able to play most media disks and files. If you are having difficulties viewing or listening to a disk with your factory-installed player, you may find that Media Player Classic will do a better job.

Read more...


Taking HEART in Tough Times: DVD or CDs

Take HEART in Tough Times DVDIn this informal setting in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Joanna Macy looks at creation and humanity and offers five guidelines to strengthen us in times of darkness.

She shows that we can know how to meet our needs without destroying our planet, and that we can take pride in knowing that we are able to be creative in healing our world. Joanna’s deep wisdom is blended with her warm presence to make this teaching inspiring and helpful.

Richard Rohr brings his Franciscan perspective to the discussion with his usual deep spiritual wisdom. In this talk he begins to share the perspective of “Church as Permaculture,” a refreshing way to look at how we see religion, community, and living our lives on the planet Earth.

Event attendees offered challenging questions, which brought forth thoughtful responses from Joanna and Richard.

Examples of the questions are:

  • How do you help people to pay attention?
  • What can I do today to change? Give us suggestions on what to do to today, on a practical level?
  • How do we speak to young people about this, and what advice do you have for parents?
  • What is the role of technology in all of this?

This presentation is one that should not only be viewed (or listened to) but also shared with family, friends, neighbors, and communities.

Approximate Length: 2-1/2 hours

Buy the 3 Audio CDs

Buy the DVD (USA/CAN/MEX format)

Produced: CAC Center for Action and Contemplation CAC_logo


Joanna has set up a direct online bookstore link with her friend and colleague Paul Cienfuegos, who owns ("Extraordinary Books for a Healthy Planet"). Joanna encourages you to buy your books from rather than from a large corporate bookstore. To do so, simply click on any one of Joanna's books listed here, and a new screen will open on the site, where you can find out more details about that title, as well as purchase it with your credit card.

A Year with Rilke

In 'A Year with Rilke: Daily Readings from the Best of Rainer Maria Rilke', Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy, the translators of Rilke’s 'The Book of Hours: Love Poems to God' team up again to offer daily readings from the beloved poet Rainer Maria Rilke, the newest addition to HarperOne’s “Year with” series. It including selections from Rilke’s journals and letters as well as his luminous poetry.

Click here to order


In Praise of Mortality

In Praise of Mortality: Selections from Rilke's Duino Elegies and Sonnets to Orpheus, my 2004 translation with Anita Barrows (published by Riverhead). Note: includes the original German text.

To order a copy, click here.


Dharma and Development

Dharma and Development: Religion as Resource in the Sarvodaya Self-Help Movement (Kumarian Press, 1993, revised 1995, reprints available by contacting Kumarian)

Sarvodaya, a Buddhist-inspired Movement in Sri Lanka, provides lessons in alternative economics and spiritually based community organizing. This book is based on my years of fieldwork in Sri Lanka as a student of this movement.

To order a copy, click here.

Widening Circles

Widening Circles: A Memoir (New Catalyst Books, 2007)

This story of my life recounts how a devout Cartesian, schooled at a french lycee, falls in love with her world and ends up as a Buddhist teacher of deep ecology. Adventures along the way move between Himalayan hermitages and political action, impelled by a determination to wed spirituality with social change.

To order a copy, click here.


Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory: The Dharma of Living Systems

Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory: The Dharma of Living Systems (SUNY Press, 1991)

The two bodies of thought, that most shaped my life and work, are brought into dialogue, shedding light on each other and on our power to change. This book is based on my doctoral dissertation.

To order a copy, click here.


Translated into Korean in 2004--available only in Korea.