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Buddhism for Mothers: A Calm Approach to Caring for Yourself and Your Children Paperback – October 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Allen & Unwin (October 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1742373771
  • ISBN-13: 978-1742373775
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,565 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Buddhist practitioner Napthali has written an eminently practical book that gives frazzled mothers usable advice and empathy. At a time in their lives when women must balance the pulls of instinct, hormonally charged emotion and familial and social expectations, it is both possible and highly beneficial to practice Buddhism. While Buddhism has a long history of monastic practice and application, its modern expansion into the West has emphasized its relevance to householders. Parenting books are a logical application, though still relatively few in number (e.g. Jacqueline Kramer's Buddha Mom: The Path of Mindful Mothering). In a highly selective culling of teachings, Napthali wisely focuses on maternal mind states and how Buddhism can give a mother insight and literal breathing space before she responds to any parenting situation. The essential Buddhist teaching that all things are impermanent is highly relevant when responding to, for example, a toddler throwing a tantrum in public. The book is perhaps less deep than those written by longtime teachers, as so many Buddhist books are. But precisely because she is not a teacher and is in the midst of mothering, Napthali offers the approachable and authentic perspective of a rank-and-file practitioner who lives the techniques and situations she writes about. This book will be most useful for mothers of young children, providing them spiritual resources at a life stage when women need all the help they can get.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"This is an excellent, practical guide to everyday Buddhism not just for mothers, but for everyone who has ever had a mother."  —Vicki Mackenzie, author, Why Buddhism


"The author guides busy women in the art of transforming their lives in the midst of chaos."  —Library Journal


"An eminently practical book that gives frazzled mothers usable advice and empathy . . . the approachable and authentic perspective of a rank-and-file practitioner who lives the techniques and situations she writes about. This book will be most useful for mothers of young children, providing them spiritual resources at a life stage when women need all the help they can get."  —Publishers Weekly on Buddhism for Mothers

More About the Author

Sarah Napthali is a practicing Buddhist with more than 10 years of experience applying Buddhist principles to her everyday life. She is the mother of two small children and has contributed to the Australian magazines Women's Weekly, Elle, Mother and Baby, and Australian Parents.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Napthali's book gives ANY mother, Buddhist or not, insight into mindful, calm parenting.
Spinner's End
Really good book for moms who feel like going crazy, who feel alone in a stir of emotions never felt before.
marcy westover
I loved this book, it was really beautifully written, Sarah has a lovely style of writing.
newmother

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

56 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Kristin M. Scott on September 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
IF YOU'RE A MOM, BUY THIS BOOK! I am sceptical of anyone trying to preach an idea to me, and I do not claim to be Buddhist. I just LOVE this book. I checked it out from a local library, but am now purchasing it so I can always have it around. It not only approaches ways to be a calmer mom, but a calmer being in your daily encounter with the world. It has changed how I approach issues, big or small; it's also inspired me to demonstrate the same zen-buddhist coping tools for my children; and it has helped me to stay in the present moment. This book taught me that Buddhism is a spirituality more than a religion. It's all about being responsible for your own feelings and your own perception of the world. My 6-year old is already practicing the Buddhist principle of impermanence - I overheard him telling my 2-year old that his feeling scared about starting preschool would pass, and soon he'd be having fun and forget that he was ever scared. WOW!
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Suzanne Spector on September 15, 2006
Format: Paperback
One of many great things about this book is that it seems to have been designed to be read in little snippets. I find that I am reading 5-10 pages, then cogitating on them for a few days, and then continuing to read.

The author is very honest and refreshing. She tells of her near blissful joy at seeing her young childrens' smiling faces when she picks them up at childcare at the end of the day. Then tells how, at times, her mindset is replaced a few hours later by thoughts of the "I just can't take this mind-numbing drudgery and redundancy of entertaining preschool children for another minute!" variety. If we are honest, we've all harbored those thoughts at one time or another.

On every page, you get the sense that the author is a very real person who can relate to both the best and the stressed in us all.
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40 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Krista on November 13, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
...for writing this book. There is so much wisdom condensed into its pages. I've highlighted and Post-It tagged so much of this book because there is so much of it I want to remember, so much of it by which I want to live. I've been able to apply some of the techniques in my day-to-day life with my 23 month old daughter and it has been very helpful. I highly recommend this book to any mother or father, or really anyone who wants to better deal with negative emotions, moodiness and stress and be more kind.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Julia Flyte TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 6, 2008
Format: Paperback
I am not a Buddhist, although there is much about the religion that I think can help us in everyday life. I picked up this book more for the tips on parenting than to learn more about Buddhism. For this reason I only skimmed through the initial and final chapters which are more about Buddhism, and concentrated on the segments in the middle.

What I particularly like about this book is that is very upfront about how difficult and lonely parenting can sometimes feel. Sarah Napthali (and the other women whom she quotes) are very frank about the times when they've been angry with their children or partners, when they've felt depressed or anxious or when they just fail to enjoy parenting as much as they'd like to. It's clear that being a Buddhist doesn't mean that you never feel these difficult emotions, just that you work on not giving in to them. Because this book is written in such an unjudgemental and empathetic way, I found it very inspiring. I think this should be required reading for every mother!

My only critique really is that the book is too topline. Although Napthali does give a handy list of techniques to help you parent in a more calm way, I found that some of them were more headlines than how to-s. The book also includes a chapters on topics like concerns about ageing and relationships with your partner and while these were interesting I would have preferred her to spend more time on parenting issues.

Nevertheless, it's a fabulous book to keep on your bedside table. I liked to read a few pages and reflect back at the end of the day.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By MichClay on November 15, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I really admire and like the author's brutal honesty about her experiences with motherhood: the anger, the impatience, the expectations, etc...She was so honest and didn't sugarcoat/glaze things over to look better that I couldn't help but remark over and over how "real" she was. I know many women can relate to the emotions and the sometimes out of control emotions we can experience and I liked that it was being stated outright. I particularly liked the chapter on Anger and the author's explanation/comments on karma. The second half of the book seemed repetitive of what had already been said throughout and seemed to drag a bit. I appreciate the book, but found only the first half very helpful. The rest, again, seemed overstated, repetitive, and a bit forgettable. Overall, a good read for mothers though.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By T. M-R on October 23, 2006
Format: Paperback
I love this book! I would recommend this book to anyone, Buddhist or not. I'm so glad someone is finally talking about how to deal with the stresses of motherhood in a realistic way without inducing guilt or fear. The author's tone is both friendly and empathetic--just what we moms need. The book is impowering and has made a big difference in the way I parent and the way I view my life as a mom.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Jaka Talbot on March 17, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I was suffering from postpartum depression, and my mind was filled with crazy thoughts of guilt, worry, and hopelessness, this was a real life saver. This book helped me see everything from a completely different (and more healthy) perspective. I would recommend this book to every new mom, no matter what faith she is.

I'm so glad I read this book when my son was only a few months old, I'm sure I'll be able to deal with him in a more calm and patient way for the rest of his life.

My favorite lesson from this book: treat every person and every situation with gentleness, patience, and persistence. But remember, treat YOURSELF with gentleness and patience too. Being a new mom is hard enough without beating ourselves up about it.
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