If you are at a loss for what to get for your father this Father's Day, get him an audiobook.

Why would your father want to listen to an audiobook? Well, first of all, they require less time and effort than actually reading a book. Your dad can listen to an audiobook in bits and chunks through long car rides, while on his iPod, or in the comfort of his home before heading to sleep.

Audiobooks are also intellectually stimulating. They engage the mind and heart in ways that a DVD or a music CD doesn't. Listeners of audiobooks are entertained and educated at the same time. Audiobooks, through the sound of a human voice, have the power to change minds and inspire new ideas.

And best of all, audiobooks--especially if downloaded directly onto your computer--require zero packaging and zero maintenance. Unlike the other weird technological gizmos and neckties you may have given in the past, this audio file won't be gathering dust in family closets or cardboard boxes in garages. What a great green gift for dear old Dad!

Here's my criteria for the 5 audiobooks listed below:

1. They're non-fiction. A non-fiction piece is easier to pick up after an extended waiting period than a complex fictional narrative.

2. They tackle big, world-changing ideas in a way that is intelligent, entertaining and inspiring.

Come to think of it, if hunting and fishing are completely out of the question, listening to an audiobook together just might be a fun father-bonding activity for this coming Sunday. Happy Father's Day and happy listening!

1. The Outliers: Stories of Success by Malcolm Gladwell. Malcolm Gladwell is the ultimate cult nerd hero who already has a popular video lecture up on TED about spaghetti sauce. Named one of TIME's 100 Most Influential People in 2005, this social scientist author is known for his brilliant, mind-bending dissections of social trends, pop culture phenomena and human thought. It is not uncommon for readers to see the world in a completely different light after experiencing a Malcolm Gladwell piece.

2. The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan. Michael Pollan is the Malcolm Gladwell of food. The ingredients of a simple McDonalds meal or an "organic'" Whole Foods dinner are deconstructed into Big Ideas concerning the state of our planet, the role of government in our everyday lives and other food-related issues that have huge ramifications for humanity at large. I'm going to hate myself for saying this: talk about food for thought.

3. Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace... One School at a Time by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin. This is the famous book that all your friends have probably been talking about for ages. A lone mountain-climber's promise to build a school for a tiny mountain village in Pakistan slowly and painstakingly builds into a widespread revolution to sow institutions of education and peace--instead of bombs. I will also include as a side note that Greg Mortenson--the true flesh-and-blood protagonist of this gripping saga--is a dad himself in addition to being a world-class hero.

4. Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World has Never Seen by Christopher McDougall. An enthralling nonfiction study into what makes people run and what makes exceptional runners go so fast.

5. Hot, Flat and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution -- and How it Can Renew America by Thomas L. Friedman. Why should you listen to Thomas L. Friedman? He's a New York Times columnist, Pulitzer-Prize winner, and ultimate smartypants.

Author's Bio: 

Intent.com
Intent.com is a premier wellness site and supportive social network where like-minded individuals can connect and support each others' intentions. Founded by Deepak Chopra's daughter Mallika Chopra, Intent.com aims to be the most trusted and comprehensive wellness destination featuring a supportive community of members, blogs from top wellness experts and curated online content relating to Personal, Social, Global and Spiritual wellness.