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The Enlightened Mind Paperback – May 26, 1993

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Stephen Mitchell's many books include the bestselling Tao Te Ching, Gilgamesh, and The Second Book of the Tao, as well as The Selected Poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke, The Gospel According to Jesus, Bhagavad Gita, The Book of Job, and Meetings with the Archangel.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (May 26, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060923202
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060923204
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #102,540 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Stephen Mitchell was born in Brooklyn in 1943, educated at Amherst, the Sorbonne, and Yale, and de-educated through intensive Zen practice. His many books include the bestselling Tao Te Ching, The Gospel According to Jesus, Bhagavad Gita, The Book of Job, Meetings with the Archangel, Gilgamesh, The Second Book of the Tao, and the Iliad. When he is not writing, he likes to (in no particular order) think about writing, think about not writing, not think about writing, and not think about not writing. He is married to Byron Katie and cowrote two of her bestselling books: Loving What Is and A Thousand Names for Joy. You can read extensive excerpts from all his books on his website, www.stephenmitchellbooks.com.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In my opinion the bits and pieces of the Whole that are contained in this book are a tasty feast for the hungry mind. A veritable smorgasbord of heavenly and earthly delights. A little Heraclitus, Plato, Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad, Rumi, Eckhart, Dame Julian, Blake, Chief Seattle, Emerson, Einstein, and others. A portion of the Upanishads, the Judeo-Christian Bible, the Hermetic Writings, the Diamond Sutra, and what we have here is truth, truth, and more truth. If you want an excellent sampling of universal truth as expressed by some of our world's greatest heart-minds then this is a good book for you. And for me.

Sampler:

Ramana Maharshi:

"If the mind is happy, not only the body but the whole world will be happy. So one must find out how to become happy oneself. Wanting to reform the world without discovering one's true self is like trying to cover the whole world with leather to avoid the pain of walking on stones and thorns. It is much simpler to wear shoes".

Dogen:

"Gaining enlightenment is like the moon reflected on the water. The moon doesn't get wet; the water isn't broken... The whole moon and the sky are reflected in one dewdrop on the grass".

Einstein:

"A human being is a part of the whole that we call the universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest--a kind of optical illusion of his consciousness. This illusion is a prison to us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for only the few people nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living beings and all of nature".

Rumi:

"The Love-Religion has no code or doctrine. Only Love".
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Format: Paperback
I found this book on accident several years into my journey, and found it to be a most intriguing work. If you already claim to know the truth, the whole truth, and everyone else falls short, this book will no doubt offend your sensibilities. However if every day is a learning experience for you, and you listen to the " still, small voice within", you will no doubt recognize the transparent thread which connects all the passages in Gods love. No matter how many times I read and reread it, as my perspective grows, so do I find new teachings to inspire and motivate me.
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Compiled to appeal to the masses it is a very impressive effort . The introduction given to each section seems to restrict the understanding and guide ones thought in a particular area, it is my humble feeling that this kind of literature needs no introduction. The way it has been combined have an out of the world effect.Best work.I love it
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Format: Paperback
In fairness, some of the chapters in the book explore deep wisdom. But so many others are fluff passing itself off as solid truth. The reason: Stephen Mitchell, who picked what would get in and what didn't (and did a fair amount of the translating), doesn't know the difference between enlightenment and dissociation. Sometimes he really does touch on truth and wisdom (at least insofar as I see it as such), but all too often he gets hooked on yet another "great mind" who's out to "rise above life's sorrows," "conquer the Self," and be "at one with Nature" without having done the hard work to get there... Nary a mention of resolving traumas, opening up the deep channel to the self by resolving the very things that block our connection with it.

He doesn't realize that dissociation mimics enlightenment. If you split off from your traumas and bury them deep you really can seem to be at peace, and have that ever-present Buddha smile on your face. One wonders if the Buddha's smile was borne of dissociation. Certainly no lack of his followers have taken that path---yet just below the surface are cannonballs waiting to explode.

At times Stephen Mitchell, with his knack for writing annoying, all-too-clever little chapter intros that thankfully are italicized so they're easy to root out and skip over, also gravitates toward "enlightened minds" who just write nonsensical mishmash. Take his chapter by Franz Kafka. Half the stuff in it is unintelligible---yet its cleverness clearly has Mitchell hooked.

Three last gripes:

1. Although I liked the chapters by the two American Indians, especially the Seneca chief, I didn't find them so enlightened.
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Format: Paperback
Now here is a book that will keep you pondering about the ultimate meaning of life itself - it is a compilation that extols the spiritual life. In its pages you will find the writings of the greatest spiritual luminaries, who have graced this world with words of immortal bliss. It brings together the essence of the minds of the mystic visionaries, and it makes one feel that we are all brothers and sisters in truth. No matter what your spiritual practice, preference, or inclination, this book has much to offer its readers.
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This book is incredible for anyone who is ready to deepen their relationship with what is always here. It will bring up things in yourself you may of never known and thank goodness for our unconcious to become concious, its workable then! I have had a beautiful relationship with this book, it has really opened my mind to more than ideas and concepts. purchase this book and any other book by stephen mitchell.
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