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Mindfulness in Plain English Paperback – Deluxe Edition, September 6, 2011
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"A classic--one of the very best English sources for authoritative explanations of mindfulness." (Daniel Goleman)
"Of great value to newcomers... especially people without access to a teacher." (Larry Rosenberg, author of Breath by Breath)
"This book is the bible of mindfulness." (Barry Boyce, editor of Mindful magazine and The Mindfulness Revolution)
"Wonderfully clear and straightforward." (Joseph Goldstein, author of A Heart Full of Peace)
"Pithy and practical." (Shambhala Sun)
"Jargon-free." (USA Today)
"Among the very best." (Tricycle)
"A classic." (Inquiring Mind)
"Profound...a classic interpretation of Vipassana meditation practice." (The Middle Way)
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Top Customer Reviews
meditation book only to find that the picture on
the cover is the only thing that makes any sense?
Have you ever wondered why the author or
translator never bothers to tell you what those
weird words mean, "Samahadi...",
Have you finished a meditation book and
understood about half of what was talked about and
figured that half is better than none? (a very 'enlightened'
but often frustrating outcome
especially when these books aren't cheap)
This little known book seems to have addressed
and solved all those problems and more. It is a book
written for people who have no clue how to
start meditating and for those who have started, but
don't know where to look for the answers to
questions that come up during their practice.
The best thing about this book is in
its title,'plain English'.It seems to gently
lead one by the hand through the mystery and
confusion of meditation with a sense of humor
and patience rarely given to the subject.
I have been meditating for nine years now and
have built up a small library of books on the
subject. When friends ask me about meditation
I dig around in all the books with great
covers and reach for "Mindfullness In Plain
English" every time.
In "Mindfulness" you will gain an understanding of what mindfullness is, how to cultivate it both during sitting practice and the rest of the time, tips on how to sit and how to overcome some of the most common distractions (including your feet going to sleep and your back hurting), and what to look for and what to avoid. I have not been practicing meditation for long, and this book was of enormous value in helping me identify the things I was doing that served as barriers to effective insight meditation, as well as giving me ideas on how to enhance the effectiveness of my meditation.
This is an extremely practical book for the western practitioner. It draws heavily upon the Buddhist paradigm, but the techniques for effective meditation cross all sect boundaries, and the beginning practitioner of any faith will find this book of enormous benefit. I would strongly encourage the reader to suppliment this book with "The Miracle of Mindfulness" by Thich Nhat Hahn. The two together are a delightfully easy to read but complete and well rounded introduction to the practices of Insight Meditation. If you want to know how but don't want to hire a Yogi to translate, this book is the place to start.
The introduction gives a brief look at the roots of the practice and tells the reader that meditation is intrinsically experiential so the best way to get started is to just sit and try it. In the following chapters, Gunaratana helps the reader to understand exactly what meditation is and what it isn't. From there he goes into more detailed instructions as to what your mind and body should be doing while you meditate. This is accompanied with useful tips on dealing with problems that may arise in your practice, including the 5 major hindrances that nearly all meditators face. The book wraps up with a more in depth look at exactly what "mindfulness" is and how to "take it from the cushion" and integrate it into our daily lives.
I found this book very easy to read and understand and feel it would be an excellent guide for people just getting into Buddhism and meditation. Already being the owner of a collection of books on Buddhism, this book didn't offer any new revelations but I was extrememly pleased with the sections on mindfulness and have already used some of the author's suggestions on integrating it into daily life. The main reason I did not give the book 5 stars is because it offers much more for the new reader than it does for one with more experience.
If you buy this book and still feel like you could use more detailed instructions on meditation, I recommend you also purchase "Change Your Mind: A Practical Guide to Buddhist Meditation" by Paramananda (ISBN: 0904766810).
If you are interested in vipassana or mindfulness meditation, or even zazen, this book is worth reading. It tells you how to do this kind of meditation, and what to do with the problems that come up. It is a practical handbook and it's also fun to read. I'm the author of the book, Self-Help Stuff That Works, and I can tell you with some authority that the techniques Gunaratana describes in this book work, and they are worth applying, even if you don't sit still. You can do your work with mindfulness. You can talk to your child with mindfulness. Anything can be a meditation. Mindfulness in Plain English will show you how. I recommend this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great for beginning learning meditation. An introduction to inspire and enlighten. Enjoy the journey :)Published 1 day ago by Ali
Plain English, yes, but I was hoping for a slightly more rational approach to the practice.Published 12 days ago by A. Mae Stark
To the point and practical. The best book on this subject I've had a chance to read. A very good introduction into meditation.Published 14 days ago by Gašper Šetinc
This book was a huge disappointment. Because of a disability, I often rely on my kindle to read to me when I am not able to do so. Read morePublished 14 days ago by anon
great book, I would recommend it to both individuals new to mindfulness practices and those who have been practicing for years. Read morePublished 28 days ago by Jaimie Burns
This book describes meditation process in more complete terms than books describing how to meditate.Published 1 month ago by Brownie