The 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People

Sounds True is pleased to reprint this article with permission of Watkins Review. Sounds True authors are in boldface type if we have published their work at any time in our 26 year history.

100 Spiritual Power List by Watkins

The 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People

We’re delighted to share the début list of the 100 most spiritually influential living people, that was published in the Spring issue #26 of the Watkins Review.*  Yes, we’ve taken up the not so simple task of naming the most popular authors and spiritual teachers, whose contribution in spirituality and spreading awareness is affecting us all.

We live in an age of lists – from groceries and obituaries to Facebook friends, resume facts, lists of city capitals and lottery numbers. Of course, lists that classify the past, are easier to compile than lists that attempt to predict the future. With the holy grail of sorting algorithms, the world is sure to be your oyster.

The 100 Spiritual Power ListLists help us organize, explore and perceive our environments. But are so many lists really necessary? It is very much in vogue to publish lists of people: Time Magazine publishes an annual list of the 100 people who most influence the world; Forbes publishes several lists including a Celebrity 100 list, the World’s 100 Most Powerful Women, and a list of 1000 Billionaires; Art Review’s Power 100 is an annual list of the worlds 100 most powerful collectors, artists, gallerists, etc…

The lists of lists of people, just keep going and going. However, the Watkins Review believes that an important list has been long overdue, and we are delighted to share with you our list of the 100 Most Spiritually Influential Living People. Lists of influential people contribute to the discourse and issues that each person represents, and the Watkins Review hopes that our list will nurture the debates surrounding contemporary spirituality.

There are several factors that were taken into account when compiling the list. Listed below are the main three:

  1. The person has to be alive
  2. The person has to have made a unique and spiritual contribution on a global scale
  3. The person is frequently Googled, appears in Nielsen Data, and highlighted in throughout the blogosphere

It’s interesting to think about the amount of times that a person is googled; in a sense, being googled is a form of digital voting, and illustrates just how often someone is being sought out.

Read about the Top 10 people in the Watkins 100 Spiritual Power List >>

List at a glance:
1. Eckhart Tolle 34. Joseph Alois Ratzinger 67. John Bradshaw
2. Dalai Lama 35. Krishna Das 68. Jeff Foster
3. Dr Wayne W. Dyer 36. Drunvalo Melchizedek 69. Patrick Holford
4. Thich Nhat Hanh 37. Sai Baba 70. Andrew Cohen
5. Deepak Chopra 38. Jack Kornfield 71. Vladimir Megre
6. Louise L. Hay 39. Pema Chödrön 72. Thomas Cleary
7. Paulo Coelho 40. T.K.V. Desikachar 73. Daniel Pinchbeck
8. Oprah Winfrey 41. Esther & Jerry Hicks 74. Jonathan Goldman
9. Ken Wilber 42. Dan Brown 75. Sonia Choquette
10. Rhonda Byrne 43. Z’ev Ben Shimon Halevi 76. Seyyed Hossein Nasr
11. James Redfield 44. Diana Cooper 77. Mother Meera
12. Neale Donald Walsch 45. Ram Dass 78. Barefoot Doctor
13. Doreen Virtue 46. Andrew Weil 79. Richard Bandler
14. Alejandro Jodorowsky 47. Satya Narayan Goenka 80. Robert Bly
15. Richard Bach 48. Jon Kabat-Zinn 81. Adyashanti
16. Alex Grey 49. Alan Moore 82. Sogyal Rinpoche
17. Byron Katie 50. Dan Millman 83. Li Hongzhi
18. Masaru Emoto 51. Bruce Lipton 84. Sri Bhagavan
19. Nelson Mandela 52. Peter Kingsley 85. Rupert Sheldrake
20. Bernie Siegel 53. Karen Armstrong 86. John & Caitlín Matthews
21. Caroline Myss 54. Judy Hall 87. Chogyal Namkhai Norbu
22. Brian Weiss 55. Colin Wilson 88. Kenneth Grant*
23. Mantak Chia 56. Joscelyn Godwin 89. Stanislav Grof
24. John Gray 57. James Lovelock 90. James Hillman
25. Gregg Braden 58. Satish Kumar 91. Clarissa Pinkola Estés
26. Stephen R. Covey 59. Shakti Gawain 92. Stephen Levine
27. Marianne Williamson 60. Elaine Pagels 93. Candace Pert
28. Desmond Tutu 61. Kyozan Joshu Sasaki 94. Barbara Ann Brennan
29. Mata Amritanandamayi 62. Gary Zukav 95. Coleman Barks
30. Philip Berg 63. Erich von Däniken 96. Robert Thurman
31. Ervin Laszlo 64. David Deida 97. B.K.S Iyengar
32. Andrew Harvey 65. Oberto Airaudi ‘Falcon’ 98. William Bloom
33. Don Miguel Ruiz 66. Stuart Wilde 99. Lynne McTaggart
(for full details read the 100 List in the Watkins Review #26) 100. Marion Woodman

Interesting statistics:
Male: 76%
Female: 24%
Median age: 67 years
The oldest: 104 years, Kyozan Joshu Sasaki
The youngest: 30 years, Jeff Foster

*88. Kenneth Grant passed away on January 15th, 2011. His extraordinary influence will continue to be felt.

Read more about the Top 10 people in the Watkins 100 Spiritual Power List at the Watkins Books blog.

*The Watkins Review magazine (published by and available from Watkins Books at £4.99 or as a subscription) not only offers reviews of all the latest releases in the Mind, Body, Spirit field, but also features articles and interviews with leading authors. The Review is published three times a year and has a readership of over 30,000 people worldwide.