So you think you're a Buddhist? Think again. Tibetan Buddhist master Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse, one of the most creative and innovative lamas teaching today, throws down the gauntlet to the Buddhist world, challenging common misconceptions, stereotypes, and fantasies. With wit and irony, Khysentse urges readers to move beyond the superficial trappings of Buddhism—beyond the romance with beads, incense, or exotic robes—straight to the heart of what the Buddha taught.
With wit and irony, Khyentse urges readers to move beyond the superficial trappings of Buddhism-beyond the romance with beads, incense, or exotic robes-straight to the heart of what the Buddha taught. And after he explains what makes you not a Buddhist, he kindly explains what a Buddhist is. The author is one of the most creative and innovative young Tibetan lamas teaching today.
Dzongsar Khyentse is one of the most creative and innovative young Tibetan Buddhist lamas teaching today. The director of two feature films with Buddhist themes (the international sensation The Cup and Travelers and Magicians), this provocative teacher, artist, and poet is widely known and admired by Western Buddhists. Moving away from conventional presentations of Buddhist teachings, Khyentse challenges readers to make sure they know what they're talking about before they claim to be Buddhist. With wit and irony, Khyentse urges readers to move beyond the superficial trappings of Buddhism--beyond a romance with beads, incense, and exotic people in robes--straight to the heart of what the Buddha taught. In essence, this book explains what a Buddhist really is, namely, someone who deeply understands the truth of impermanence and how our emotions can trap us in cycles of suffering. Khyentse presents the fundamental tenets of Buddhism in simple language, using examples we can all relate to.
Not for Happiness
Author: Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse
Publisher: Shambhala Publications
Do you practise meditation because you want to feel good? Or to help you relax and be "happy"? Then frankly, according to Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse, you are far better off having a full-body massage than trying to practise the Dharma. Genuine spiritual practice, not least the Ngöndro preliminaries, will not bring the kind of comfort and ease most worldly people crave. Quite the opposite, in fact. But if your ultimate goal is enlightenment, Ngöndro practice is a must, and Not for Happiness your perfect guide, as it contains everything an aspiring practitioner needs to get started, including advice about: • developing "renunciation mind" • discipline, meditation and wisdom • using your imagination in visualization practice • why you need a guru
The Guru Drinks Bourbon?
Author: Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse
Devotion to one’s teacher is the lifeblood of the Vajrayana path. Because the guru can and will use whatever means it takes to wake us up, this relationship may require us to drop our most deeply held beliefs and expectations. Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse addresses some of the most misunderstood aspects of this powerful relationship and gives practical advice on making the most of this precious opportunity for transformation. Through stories and classical examples, he shows how to walk the path with eyes wide open, with critical-thinking skills sharpened and equipped to analyze the guru, before taking the leap.
Why Buddhism is True
Author: Robert Wright
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
From one of America’s most brilliant writers, a New York Times bestselling journey through psychology, philosophy, and lots of meditation to show how Buddhism holds the key to moral clarity and enduring happiness. At the heart of Buddhism is a simple claim: The reason we suffer—and the reason we make other people suffer—is that we don’t see the world clearly. At the heart of Buddhist meditative practice is a radical promise: We can learn to see the world, including ourselves, more clearly and so gain a deep and morally valid happiness. In this “sublime” (The New Yorker), pathbreaking book, Robert Wright shows how taking this promise seriously can change your life—how it can loosen the grip of anxiety, regret, and hatred, and how it can deepen your appreciation of beauty and of other people. He also shows why this transformation works, drawing on the latest in neuroscience and psychology, and armed with an acute understanding of human evolution. This book is the culmination of a personal journey that began with Wright’s landmark book on evolutionary psychology, The Moral Animal, and deepened as he immersed himself in meditative practice and conversed with some of the world’s most skilled meditators. The result is a story that is “provocative, informative and...deeply rewarding” (The New York Times Book Review), and as entertaining as it is illuminating. Written with the wit, clarity, and grace for which Wright is famous, Why Buddhism Is True lays the foundation for a spiritual life in a secular age and shows how, in a time of technological distraction and social division, we can save ourselves from ourselves, both as individuals and as a species.
Being a Christian isn’t easy. Sustaining belief without any doubts for one’s entire life is a very rare accomplishment. Indeed, many would say that examining one’s faith at least once is a central part of the Christian condition. In this landmark work, esteemed theologian Paul Knitter explains the unique path that he took to overcome his doubts, becoming a stronger Christian in the process. Honest and unflinching, Without Buddha I Could not be a Christian narrates each common spiritual dilemma that Knitter has struggled with and explains how a Buddhist worldview has allowed him to resolve each one. From the ‘petitioning’ nature of Christian prayer to how Christianity views life after death, Knitter argues that a Buddhist standpoint can help inspire a more person-centred conception of Christianity, where individual religious experience comes first, and liturgy and tradition second. Moving and revolutionary, this book will inspire Christians everywhere.
Author: Calvin Malone
Calvin Malone has plenty to teach us all about ideas that we rarely associate with the penal system; Dignity. Compassion. Freedom behind bars. He speaks from experience; Malone is nearing the end of a 20-year prison sentence himself. Razor-Wire Dharma is his eloquent, enlightening, and utterly inspiring personal story how he found Buddhism-and real, transformative meaning for his life-despite being in one of the world's harshest environments. Some of his stories are hilarious, some are harrowing, but all express Buddhist wisdom as vividly as any practitioner could hope to do. Malone is living it, and in the unlikeliest of places. For him, the choice of staying true to his principles often requires that he quite literally jeopardize his life, safety, and the few small comforts available to him to try to do what's right. Razor-Wire Dharma makes it clear that if Calvin can do what's right in jail, he can do it anywhere. What's more, it proves that we can, too.
Why I Am a Buddhist
Author: Stephen T. Asma
Publisher: Hampton Roads Publishing
Profound and amusing, this book provides a viable approach to answering the perennial questions: Who am I? Why am I here? How can I live a meaningful life? For Asma, the answers are to be found in Buddhism. There have been a lot of books that have made the case for Buddhism. What makes this book fresh and exciting is Asma’s iconoclasm, irreverence, and hardheaded approach to the subject. He is distressed that much of what passes for Buddhism is really little more than “New Age mush.” He asserts that it is time to “take the California out of Buddhism.” He presents a spiritual practice that does not require a belief in creeds or dogma. It is a practice that is psychologically sound, intellectually credible, and esthetically appealing. It is a practice that does not require a diet of brown rice, burning incense, and putting both your mind and your culture in deep storage. In seven chapters, Asma builds the case for a spiritual practice that is authentic, and inclusive. This is Buddhism for everyone, especially for people who are uncomfortable with religion but yearn for a spiritual practice.
Novice to Master
Author: Soko Morinaga
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Everybody loves Novice to Master! As you'll see in the glowing endorsements and reviews included below, this modern spiritual classic has been embraced by readers of all types. In his singularly humorous and biitingly direct way, Zen abbot Soko Morinaga tells the story of his rigorous training at a Japanese Zen temple, his spiritual growth and his interactions with his students and others. Morinaga's voice is uniquely tuned to the truth of the condition of the human mind and spirit and his reflections and interpretations are unvarnished and succinct. His great gift is the ability to lift the spirit of the reader all the while exposing the humility and weakness in the lives of people, none more so than his own. Read on to see what everyone from Publishers Weekly to well-known Buddhist figures and even New York Times bestselling author Anthony Swofford have to say about this one of a kind book!
A brand-new edition of the best-selling classic with added and updated practices. In 2001, Toni Bernhard got sick and, to her and her partner’s bewilderment, stayed that way. As they faced the confusion, frustration, and despair of a life with sudden limitations—a life that was vastly different from the one they’d thought they’d have together—Toni had to learn how to be sick. In spite of her many physical and energetic restrictions (and sometimes, because of them), Toni learned how to live a life of equanimity, compassion, and joy. This book reminds us that our own inner freedom is limitless, regardless of our external circumstances. Updated with new insights and practices hard-won from Toni’s own ongoing life experience, this is a must-read for anyone who is—or who might one day be—sick or in pain.
Author: Samrat Upadhyay
A novel of love and political upheaval, in which “Kathmandu is as specific and heartfelt as Joyce’s Dublin” (San Francisco Chronicle). In Buddha’s Orphans, Nepal’s political upheavals of the past century serve as a backdrop to the story of an orphan boy, Raja, and the girl he is fated to love, Nilu, a daughter of privilege. Their love scandalizes both of their families—and the novel takes readers across the globe and through several generations. This engrossing, unconventional love story explores the ways that events of the past, even those we are ignorant of, inevitably haunt the present. It is also a brilliant depiction of Nepali society from the Whiting Award–winning author of Arresting God in Kathmandu. “[Upadhyay is] a Buddhist Chekhov.” —San Francisco Chronicle “Upadhyay . . . [illuminates] the shadow corners of his characters’ psyches, as well as the complex social and political realities of life in Nepal, with equal grace.” —Elle “[Upadhyay’s] characters linger. They are captured with such concise, illuminating precision that one begins to feel that they just might be real.” —The Christian Science Monitor “Absorbing . . . Beautifully told.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
A national bestseller and acclaimed guide to Buddhism for beginners and practitioners alike In this simple but important volume, Stephen Batchelor reminds us that the Buddha was not a mystic who claimed privileged, esoteric knowledge of the universe, but a man who challenged us to understand the nature of anguish, let go of its origins, and bring into being a way of life that is available to us all. The concepts and practices of Buddhism, says Batchelor, are not something to believe in but something to do—and as he explains clearly and compellingly, it is a practice that we can engage in, regardless of our background or beliefs, as we live every day on the path to spiritual enlightenment.
What the Buddha Taught
Author: Walpola Rahula
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
This clear and informative guide draws on the words spoken by the Buddha to convey the true nature of Buddhist wisdom. It also features an illustrative section of texts from the Suttas and the Dhammapada, a glossary of Buddhist terms and an up-to-date bibliography.
This isn’t your grandmother’s book on meditation. It’s about integrating that "spiritual practice" thing into a life that includes beer, sex, and a boss who doesn’t understand you. It’s about making a difference in yourself and making a difference in your world—whether you’ve got everything figured out yet or not. Lodro Rinzler is a bright and funny young teacher with a knack for showing how the Buddhist teachings can have a positive impact on every little nook and cranny of your life—whether you’re interested in being a Buddhist or not.