Insight Meditation cofounder Joseph Goldstein ponders the possibility that all Buddhist teachings could be distilled into One Dharma
. As Buddhism continues to grow in the West, Goldstein shows us the value of uniting this movement rather than allowing it to become fractured by its subtle differences. He does not advocate a watering down or mixing up of the various traditions. Rather, "We can practice each of them in its own integrity and come to a genuine depth of understanding." Readers who are wary of a scholarly analysis of Buddhist nuances need not worry. Goldstein (The Experience of Insight
) relies on personal anecdotes and accessible language to explore the common themes in all Buddhist teachings. Though purists will no doubt quibble, Goldstein believes that following one Dharma is the way the West will be won, weaving together the methods of mindfulness, the motivation of compassion, and the liberating wisdom of nonclinging. "These three pillars--mindfulness, compassion, and wisdom--are not Indian or Burmese, Japanese or Tibetan; they are qualities in our own minds." --Gail Hudson
From Library Journal
Separated by time and space, the several traditions of Buddhism and their many internal variations grew from the Buddha's original teachings into disparate systems of practice on the path to liberation. Having himself confronted these discrepancies, Goldstein, a highly respected teacher of meditation, cofounder of the Insight Meditation Society, and widely read coauthor (with Jack Kornfield) of Seeking the Heart of Wisdom and The Path of Insight Meditation, seeks here to define the One Dharma "the essential point common to all the teachings." To this end, he reviews the development of Buddhist traditions and explores various meanings of nirvana, liberation, lovingkindness, and other concepts as viewed primarily from Theravada, Tibetan, and Zen perspectives. Novices to Buddhist literature will find these teachings made accessible by a clear, simple eloquence and enlivened by anecdotes from Goldstein's personal spiritual journey. More experienced seekers will discover an excellent overview and a useful lead-in to David Brazier's The New Buddhism. Highly recommended for public and academic libraries. James R. Kuhlman, Univ. of North Carolina Lib., Asheville
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