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165 of 169 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book Guiding Us to Contentment & Peace
The title of this book may intimidate a little. But believe me, this book is a treasure. This is the best of all of Pema Chodron's wonderful books. It is the most practical and helpful of her guides on the Buddhist spiritual path. She doesn't presume we already are Bodhisattvas (saints) -- but this book can remind us of the steps toward that end, no matter who we are...
Published on November 14, 2005 by Janet S. Hathaway

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Pema's voice is best
Love Pema's work, her love and compassion for teaching, her soothing voice. Thats whats missing on this cd set. It's not pema's voice. Some other woman with yes, a very nice voice has recorded " No Time To Lose. But it's not Pema.
Auntie Pema come back...... Every other cd I have purchased and there are many are all recorded by Pema. That's the way I like it,...
Published 2 months ago by Sheryle A. Aaron


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165 of 169 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book Guiding Us to Contentment & Peace, November 14, 2005
The title of this book may intimidate a little. But believe me, this book is a treasure. This is the best of all of Pema Chodron's wonderful books. It is the most practical and helpful of her guides on the Buddhist spiritual path. She doesn't presume we already are Bodhisattvas (saints) -- but this book can remind us of the steps toward that end, no matter who we are. And with her characteristic humor and friendliness Pema reminds us not to despair when we mess up, which we will. She makes it clear that we simply renew our resolve and begin again because there is always hope! Pema Chodron calls upon the great wisdom of the ancient sage Shatideva, whose spiritual poetry is quoted throughout this book, as a resource to draw upon as we attempt to become Bodhisattvas. We are encouraged to tame our anger through patience, to uncover our own Buddha-nature by sitting mindfully, and, generally, to practicing the Dharma. This is a lovely work, lyrically written, playful while erudite, and absolutely uplifting. If you want to be happy, do yourself an enormous favor and get yourself this book.
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105 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an invaluable help, December 22, 2005
Pema Chodron is a great teacher because she always positions herself firmly in place as a learner. This book of hers is no exception, and ends up rewarding both her message and her readers with simplicity, clarity, and profound usefulness. Pema's commentary on Shantideva's mystical poem The Way of the Boddhisattva is measured and fulfilling, and her visceral understanding of the majesty of bodhichitta is alive and free on every page. Leave it to a teacher of this depth and understanding to make an 8th century mystical treatise address with intense awareness the commonplace realities of daily life. There is so much wealth for the serious practictioner contained in this book, it's tough to single out individual segments for praise; but the long middle section on Patience is especially attentive, and often piercing to the point of sublime beauty, and the segments Using Our Intelligence and Taming the Mind are wisdom overflowing. Reading this book, one easily discerns the joy of sitting at the feet of this master at Gampo Abbey and finding oneself whole time and again. "May the blind receive their sight, and the deaf begin to hear ... May the naked now be clothed, and the hungry eat their fill." Thank you, Pema, for revealing to us the path of fearlessness and love. This is food for life. Supreme recommendation, no reservations. And the book has a beautiful little appendix with a study guide that turns out to be one of its most useful attributes!
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70 of 72 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva, July 27, 2006
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Buddhism has always struck me as a fine balance between high ideals and common sense. The former gives us something to aim for, whereas the latter delivers practical advice to lead us out of our suffering. In Pema Chodron's latest book, No Time to Lose, the American Buddhist nun provides both by offering her commentary on The Way of the Boddhisattva, an eighth-century Buddhist poem by the upstart monk Shantideva, who presented it to his fellow monks before wandering away from the university.

Reading Shantideva's poem, it is obvious that not much has changed for humankind in 1300 years. We are still greedy, self-absorbed and ruled by our desires and kleshas, negative emotions that distort our perception and keep us from experiencing the present moment. In our search for happiness, we repeatedly reach for and attach ourselves to things that are impermanent, destined to disappear and die, including our ego.

Death, indeed, looms large throughout the book. Leading a life full of compassion and free of attachment assures an easier passage when our end comes. "If we can't handle being told off or not getting what we want, how will we be able to handle death?" Chodron asks almost urgently. And as we have no idea when this might occur, there is no time to lose in getting our house, and more importantly, our heart in order.

Using vivid imagery and written in very accessible language, the poem itself provides a systematic, if somewhat idealistic, program for achieving happiness, good karma and peace of mind throughout our lives and at the end. Chodron's interpretation, in gentle and engaging prose, shows us how Shantideva's advice and admonitions apply to our daily trials and tribulations.

Of course, there is a difference between ideals and what we can realistically achieve. Meditating upon the dirtiness and eventual decay of the human body in order to quell lust, for instance, is a hard sell for both Shantideva and the wise and modern Chodron. Most of us, after all, are neither monks nor nuns. It is definitely something to ponder, however, when possessed by one of our most human and perhaps destructive kleshas.

The philosophy and the teachings in No Time to Lose are similar to those found in other books by Chodron or other Buddhist writers: The mind causes our unhappiness, thus we must learn to apply mindfulness to all our actions and interactions; generosity is its own reward; and all hardships in life are opportunities to learn, to free ourselves from self-absorption, to practise the virtue of patience. What is different here is the logical build-up of the teachings: from developing our intention to change, to preparing the groundwork and transcending our hesitation, all the way through taming the mind and dissolving the barriers between self and other.

Reading this book from beginning to end feels like walking the Boddhisattva's path. Though we may not be enlightened when we reach the final page, Shantideva and Chodron have provided us with a practical guide should we wish to embark on the real journey.
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48 of 53 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars High quality, sensitive 4.5* -- recommended, September 1, 2006
A commentary on Shantideva's 8th c. classic from transcripts of Pema's teachings at Gonpo Abbey in Nova Scotia (she's resident teacher), using the Padmakara translation, verbal advice from Trungpa Rinpoche, & Dzigar Kongtrul, & prior commentaries (e.g. the Dalai Lama's "Transcendent Wisdom" & Geshe Kelsang Gyatso's "Meaningful to Behold"). The text is a guidebook for compassionate action (i.e. how to be a bodhisattva); the commentary is interspersed with groups of stanzas. The book has a Western orientation & a friendly, down-to-earth tone, making it "accessible even to people who know nothing of Buddhist teachings." Interestingly, Thubten Chodron has written two books bearing titles of two chapters ("Working with Anger" & "Taming the Mind"). All three are psychologically astute per Pema's prior works (e.g. "Start Where You Are" addressing lojong mind control). Her commentary is especially helpful both with cryptic passages & in explicating text in terms relevant & understandable to modern, Western readers. I have effectively utilized the section on anger. Pema's advice is practical & relevant: pp. 91-2: "Treat our crippling emotions like drug pushers. If we don't want to stay addicted for life, we have to see that our negative emotions weaken us & cause us harm. It is just as difficult to detox from emotions as it is to recover from heavy drugs or alcohol." p. 165: "Trungpa R. used to say, when something like anger arises, we should regard it as `not me.' Just think of it as a little bug trying to land on you; if your mind remains open & free of bias, the bug has nowhere to light...Anger is not `me,' it's just dynamic energy. If we don't identify with it, that energy remains unfixated & free. If it freezes into `want' & `don't want,' however...it will cause us...to suffer."

Pema's humor includes the movie "Groundhog Day," Harry Potter books, & quotes: p. 272: "As Dzigar Kongtrul once said, `Trying to find lasting happiness from relationships or possessions is like drinking salt water to quench your thirst." Indeed, the book title could be a pun. Some teachings are profound & advanced: p. 108: "The paramitas & letting go of self-clinging are the same...wherever any action takes us beyond self-absorption, it becomes a paramita...until we deal with poverty mind, the redistribution of all the wealth in the world won't change the outer situation," p. 269: "Shantideva makes reference to the linear development of the paramitas...our spiritual development, however, doesn't always go in such a straight line," & p. 312: "It's always wise, however, to use the teachings that apply to where you are right now as your guide to daily living." My favorite root text stanza p. 324, para. 8.140 describes exchanging oneself for another via mental role play (~Silva Mind Control); it's magnificently empathy-building. Unfortunately, Pema excludes Chapter 9 "Wisdom"--perhaps the most difficult & the one I'd most like to have her address. Also, while the text extensively addresses relative Bodhichitta, it essentially ignores Absolute Bodhichitta, somewhat limiting it.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you're wanting to be a peacemaker..., November 4, 2006
By 
Peregrinator (Montgomery County, MD) - See all my reviews
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Pema Chodron's book is not for everyone Unlike some of her more popular books, this text stays closer to tradition: it is a line-by-line commentary on an ancient text, "The Way of the Boddhisattva." I bought it not knowing quite what I expected: but what I did find was nourishing food for the journey: support for staying open-hearted and compassionate in a global time of confusion and suffering.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Literary Lucidity, June 24, 2007
No Time to Lose reads like a compassionate literary analysis of sacred prose, Pema takes us through stanza by stanza Shantideva's inspired work from the 8th century, revealing the cultural and spiritual relevance and sharing what she's learnt along the way, leaving plenty of room for us to also experience and apply its meaning in our own lives. Pema is well studied and an empathetic teacher who encourages us to try methods that she's tested some even as simple as copying down one or more of your favorite Shanitdeva's verses and reading it when we need to rekindle and reaffirm purpose. Here are some of my favorites:

On Transcending Hesitation:

"Just so and for the benefit of beings,
I will also have this attitude of mind,
And in these precepts, step by step
I will abide and train myself"
3.24

On Enthusiasm:

"Therefore leaving everything that is adverse to it
I'll labor to increase my perseverance
Through cheerful effort, keenness, self-control
Through aspiration, firmness joy and moderation."
7.32

Pema says for example about firmness that with commitment and steadfastness we can connect with and find confidence in our basic goodness which is our birthright as human beings. Pema provides ways that we can work to eliminate addictive behavior which she describes as `like licking honey on a razor's edge' (ouch!)

Reading books like this we see that the truth has not changed over the centuries; it merely awaits our committed response, as the concluding line to Shantideva's work challenges us,"Concern for others is the way to heaven"
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Time to Read This is NOW, November 9, 2006
By 
Richard S. Yell "Speedo" (Mebane, in the Triangle of North Carolina) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
An excellent guide to understanding an important Buddhist writing. Down to earth with a practical running commentary, I find it equally appealing as A Course in Miracles and de Mello's timeless book, Awareness. All three stand tall in helping us make sense of and survive in this sometimes "crazy" world in which we live.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth the study and absorption, November 14, 2012
This review is from: No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva (Paperback)
I first ordered this book from the library and after reading some sections, decided to buy for myself for deeper study, as not only are Shantideva's words worth study, so are Pema's interpretations (as usual). Still, I hesitated because of my lack of focus and busy life--would I really study it or would it join the ranks of other worthy books "to read later when I have time." About the same time, I picked up a novel from the library shelves, "Breakfast with Buddha" (Merullo), and the description of the Rinpoche really hit something in me that was ready to hear the message of both these books. Shantideva expresses it in the first few words of his excellent composition: "To those who walk in bliss/The Dharma they have mastered, And to all their heirs, to all who merit veneration, I bow down......" Specifically, I want to walk in bliss. I'm very tired of my resistance and separation. The heavy daily work is still to be done, but this book shows a very clear and joyful way.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Pema!!, May 12, 2012
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This review is from: No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva (Paperback)
I ADORE Pema Chodron! I have read most of her books and, as a former Christian, they have changed my life dramatically.
No Time to Lose is high on my list of beloved Pema writings.
I have to have a pen with me when I read because I either am marking each page or bookmarking the page.
When I finish all of her books, I will simply go back and read them again.
They are that good.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars She's Right - There's No Time To Lose, November 2, 2007
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This review is from: No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva (Paperback)
I am discovering a whole realm of wisdom of the ages. She is commenting on an ancient rule of life in a whole new way...I have been reading other, older commentaries, from other cultures, in translation. Here, an American woman is sharing her Western version...and it illuminates the others.

Easy to ready. Well worth it!
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No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva
No Time to Lose: A Timely Guide to the Way of the Bodhisattva by Pema Chodron (Paperback - August 14, 2007)
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