Neo-soul singer-songwriter Jhené Aiko has had a breakthrough year – garnering three Grammy nominations (including ‘Album of the Year’) for her contemporary R&B masterpiece Chilombo. Infusing elements of pop, hip-hop, and psychedelic music into her work, Aiko also made use of sound healing bowls to activate specific chakras in listeners on each track.
In a 2020 GQ interview, Aiko shared four of her favorite books for staying grounded. From mysticism and neuroscience to the healing power of sound, find her reading list below.
Becoming Supernatural by Dr. Joe Dispenza
“This one is the most important one. I just started reading it. I have it on audio book and iBook and a hard copy just because it’s inspired me, it’s teaching me, it’s all the things that you can ask for in a book. The way that he writes and explains everything is so simple. He does a great job of explaining the mystical and the scientific. It’s a very easy read, with practical techniques to apply to your life. The power of thinking, the power of thought, the power of manifesting. A lot of people will be, like, ‘Oh, you are what you think,’ and they kinda just leave it at that. And you’re, like, ‘Okay, whatever that means.’ Everyone takes it as, like, you’re just being high. But he shows the studies that have been done. He’s a neuroscientist, so he knows all the science behind it.” -JA
“I’ve been reading his books since I was, like, 13. This particular book, I got when I was around 17, and when my brother passed it was very helpful. He explains how there is no birth or death. Things manifest when conditions are right, and things go away when conditions are not right. And he just explains how everything exists because of everything else. So there is no me without you, there is no rain without the clouds, there is no paper without the rain. He breaks it down so beautifully and so poetically. You can read this book in, like, two days and not wanna put it down. It’s super easy to read and it’s not preachy. The first book of his I read is called Peace is Every Step, which sort of changed my life. He is someone I aspire to be like one day. He’s super centered. All of his books, I recommend.” -JA
“I actually started with Chakras for Beginners in conjunction with Sacred Sounds. Sacred Sounds talks a lot about the different notes, how they correlate with the different chakras. I study both of these books hand in hand because the chakra book goes deeper into what the chakras actually are, and the sacred sounds book goes into the vowel sounds, the tones, the frequencies that resonate with different parts of your body. Both of these books break them down super simply.” -JA
“I cracked this open for the first time a few days ago, ‘cause I thought it might come in handy at a time when we’re not really going outside. It’s a bunch of games to explore your inner world. You’re supposed to do it in a group setting, between two to eight people. It’s broken down into the chakras. There’s exploring the red world, which is your root chakra. So those are about being grounded. It follows the chakra system. Whoever wrote this book was really in tune with something. But it’s all very practical.” -JA