"Shantideva pointed out that everything good--every form of happiness, all positive qualities and so forth--comes through the kindness of others. Therefore, the mind devoted to their welfare is like a wish-fulfilling jewel, the source of all happiness and everything good and useful in the world. Just as a farmer who possesses an extremely fertile field, where everything he plants always grows, is very happy to have it and cherishes and takes great care of it, we should feel the same way about other sentient beings--that they are extremely valuable, and cherish and take care of them.
"It is interesting that, whether we are Buddhist or not, if we think about the great kindness of all beings it will be evident that all our happiness does indeed depend upon them."
In this book, Khensur Rinpoche Geshe Jampa Tegchok explains how we can train our mind away from self-cherishing, the cause of all suffering, and develop compassion, the cause of everything that is good. He bases his explanation on Kadampa Geshe Chekawa’s classic text, The Seven Point Mind Training, which, amongst other things, teaches us how to transform problems into happiness.
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This user’s guide to Buddhist basics takes the most commonly asked questions—beginning with “What is the essence of the Buddha’s teachings?”—and provides simple answers in plain English. Thubten Chodron’s responses to the questions that always seem to arise among people approaching Buddhism make this an exceptionally complete and accessible introduction—as well as a manual for living a more peaceful, mindful, and satisfying Life. Buddhism for Beginners is an ideal first book on the subject for anyone, but it’s also a wonderful resource for seasoned students, since the question-and-answer format makes it easy to find just the topic you’re looking for, such as:What is the goal of the Buddhist path? What is karma? If all phenomena are empty, does that mean nothing exists? How can we deal with fear? How do I establish a regular meditation practice? What are the qualities I should look for in a teacher? What is Buddha-nature? Why can't we remember our past lives?
An open heart is the dwelling place of compassion that extends toward all beings; a clear mind is the source of the penetrating wisdom of deep insight. Their union leads to the enlightened way of life that is at the heart of the spiritual path as taught by the Buddha. This introduction to his teaching is thorough yet wonderfully accessible, even to those with no previous knowledge of Buddhism. Thubten Chodron writes in an easy-to-understand manner as she skillfully relates the Buddha’s wisdom to the realities of our modern lives.
But it's not always easy to be kind. Sometimes our hearts are filled with anger, jealousy, or pride, and being kind is the last thing we feel like doing. Or we get so caught up in our work and responsibilities that we find no time to think of others and their needs, no time to be kind and gentle. However, these problems can be remedied. The Buddhist tradition offers a wealth of methods that can be used to overcome whatever prevents us from being kind and gentle.
Some of these methods are explored and explained in this book - in a way that will allow you to practice them in your daily life. Awakening the Kind Heart offers powerful and inviting meditation techniques to activate the heart of kindness within us all - a modern and motivating interpretation of traditional and powerful practices.
It can be hard for those of us living in the twenty-first century to see how fourteenth-century Buddhist teachings still apply. When you’re trying to figure out which cell phone plan to buy or brooding about something someone wrote about you on Facebook, lines like “While the enemy of your own anger is unsubdued, though you conquer external foes, they will only increase” can seem a little obscure.
Thubten Chodron’s illuminating explication of Togmay Zangpo’s revered text, The Thirty-seven Practices of Bodhisattvas, doesn’t just explain its profound meaning; in dozens of passages she lets her students and colleagues share first-person stories of the ways that its teachings have changed their lives. Some bear witness to dramatic transformations—making friends with an enemy prisoner-of-war, finding peace after the murder of a loved one—while others tell of smaller lessons, like waiting for something to happen or coping with a minor injury.