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How to Practice: The Way to a Meaningful Life (Thorndike Inspirational)

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) HASH(0x979773f0) étoiles sur 5 248 commentaires
300 internautes sur 311 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x98199168) étoiles sur 5 To Practice Peace and Kindness 29 mars 2002
Par Robin Friedman - Publié sur
Format: Relié
This book by H.H. the Dalai Lama may be read by those wishing an introduction to Tibetan Buddhism and by those wishing to begin or develop their practice.

The Dalai Lama attempts to answer the basic question: "How can people be happy?" His answer outlines a path of spiritual growth and practice. Although based upon Tibetan Buddhism, there is wisdom in the book for anybody seeking spiritual growth, within or without any specific religious practice.

The book consists of six short sections. It begins with a brief discussion of the life of the Buddha which, as the Dalai Lama points out, encompasses the basic teachings of the Buddhist path: morality, concentrated meditation and wisdom. The Dalai Lama then explains the basis of each teaching in short chapters. It is good that the book gives its focus to moral practice -- curing anger, lust, hatred, and agression and wishing well to oneself and others.

Chapter III of the book discusses meditation practices and will introduce the beginner to the value of meditation and to several meditation techniques. The Dalai Lama stresses the need for consistent practice and for patience and for the need of controlling one's expectations.

There are several chapters which discuss the difficult but key Buddhist teaching of dependent origination. Much of this material the Dalai Lama also covers in an earlier book called "The Meaning of Life."

There is a concluding section on Tantra, a uniquely Tibetan practice. I think it is better for the average person to remain with the practices of morality and concentration described earlier in the book.

Some of the unique features of this book are the Dalai Lama's anecdotes of his life in Tibet before the Chinese Invasion of 1950 and of his teachers. There is a substantial discussion of sexuality in the book and of how it may be used (and abused) in the search for peace and kindness. (pages 192-196) There is a translation of the Heart Sutra, a key Buddhist text with a commentary by the Dalai Lama. (159-163)

I found the Dalai Lama's concluding paragraph captures much of the tenor and the value of this book (page 223):

"Though my own knowledge is limited and my experience is also very poor, I have tried my best to help you understand the full breadth of the Buddha's teaching. Please implement whatever in these pages appears to be helpful. If you follow another religion, please adopt whatever might assist you. If you do not think it would be helpful, just leave it alone."
174 internautes sur 183 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x97621534) étoiles sur 5 Buddhism for Beginners 19 mars 2002
Par E. Thompson - Publié sur
Format: Relié
I am completely new to Buddhism and am thoroughly impressed by the Dalai Lama's clear, simple explanation. He effectively describes how even a complete Western beginner like myself can begin to end suffering by practicing. Throughout the book, the Dalai Lama's enlightenment and compassion shine off of the pages through modest stories of his life and experiences. The Dalai Lama starts out the book with the basics of Buddhist morality, moves on to the practice of meditation, and ends with the details of wisdom and tantra. There are images for meditation, lists of moral and amoral thoughts and deeds, and even a short explanation of the concept of emptiness.
Most striking of all is the Dalai Lama's comment at the very end of the book, "Though my own knowledge is limited and my experience is also very poor, I have tried my best to help you understand the full breadth of the Buddha's teaching." With these words, the Dalai Lama sets a startling example for the aspiring student by both showing humility and providing a reminder of the breadth and depth of Buddhist enlightenment. I higly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in beginning to follow the Buddhist path.
88 internautes sur 91 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9792cf90) étoiles sur 5 A great deal of wisdom for people of all faiths 25 février 2002
Par JMack - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Many people choose not to read the books by his Holiness the Dalai Lama because they believe that this will offend or counter their own religious beliefs. Quite to the contrast, everybody can take the simple practices of this book to better their everyday lives.
One line in this book has stood out in the my mind. "You should realize that difficult present circumstances are entirely due to your own past undisciplined actions, so when you experience a difficult period, do you best to avoid behavior that will add to the burden later on." (p 38). This is just one example of the suggestions given to living a more fulfilling life. I believe that he is right in his suggestion that money and posessions will not make a person happy in life. Each of us must discover what gives meaning to our life. To find this is really not that difficult as His Holiness reveals where it lies.
This book is highly recommended for anybody seeking personal and spiritual growth.
59 internautes sur 62 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x97f39d8c) étoiles sur 5 Multi leveled book for practicing Buddhists 6 août 2005
Par Tom Perigrin - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This is not really an introductory Buddhist text, although the previous reviews suggest that some (but not all) non-Buddhists have gained by reading it. Rather, it's title exactly describes it - if you are a practicing Buddhist, it tells you "How To Practice".

Of course, there is no single way to practice - in fact, there are at least 84,000 ways to practice spread over many traditions (Theravadan (SE Asia), Mahayanan (Zen, Pure Land), and Vajrayana (Tibetan). This book is primarily written for Tibetan Buddhists, but the guidelines are sufficiently broad that I have given this book to Zen and Theravaden Buddhists who found much to agree about.

The book is broken into three major sections - mirroring the three fold grouping often applied to the 8-fold path: morality, meditation and wisdom. The book also introduces the Tantric methods of Vajrayanan Buddhism.

Each chapter covers it's topic in a clear, concise fashion, and ends with a "Summary for Daily Practice". This helps tie the writing (which can be somewhat theoretical) into the title of the book "How To Practice".

The first section introduces the Four Noble Truths, and expands upon them and finally brings them to ground in practices such as such as the Four Wholesum Practices, the Six Perfections, etc.

The second section is a brief but very clear introduction to various types of meditation, including analytical and stabilizing meditation, etc. I have loaned the book to other practitioners and they agree that this is a great book to loan to beginners.

The third section is about Wisdom - the nature of reality and relative and ultimate truth (and for those of you who are really dedicated - emptiness). He ties all of this together with brief analysis of the Heart Sutra.

The book is only 220-odd pages long. This means it is just a brief overview. A Tibetan scholar (Geshe) will spend 18 years studying 1000's of pages covering these topics. However, in one way of looking at it the book is far too long. A student of Zen might say the whole answer is contained in one Koan or statement such as "Go Straight". And that too is the nature of Buddhism - it is both so huge and ulitmately so simple.

Myself? I am at to buy 5 copies as gifts for new practitioners (generosity of Dharma - one of the 6 perfections). That means it gets my highest personal rating, as I wouldn't give away anything that didn't meet the highest standards.
74 internautes sur 82 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x97f36fe4) étoiles sur 5 Not as good as some others 24 août 2003
Par Marilyn Sullivan - Publié sur
Format: CD
I seem to be the one dissenting opinion, but I have read almost everything written by and about His Holiness, and this is definitely the one I would recommend last. I felt it lacked the down-to-earth quality that I usually find in his work, that it included a lot of unnecessary detail and that listening to the cd was tedious and lifeless. Experienced practitioners will already be familiar with the information presented here, and those new to Tibetan Buddhism can find much more dynamic and practical presentations than this one (e.g. Awakening the Mind, Lightening the Heart; Path to Tranquility; Ethics for the New MIllenium, etc.)
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