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The Path To Awakening: How Buddhism's Seven Points of Mind Training Can Lead You to a Life of Enlightenment and Happiness Paperback – February 11, 2014
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About the Author
Shamar Rinpoche is the 14th Shamarpa. Born in 1952 in Tibet, Shamar Rinpoche was recognized by the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa in 1957, and by the 14th Dalai Lama. In 1996, he started to organize Bodhi Path Buddhist Centers, a network of centers covering many continents, which practice a non-sectarian approach to meditation. In addition, over the years, Shamar Rinpoche has founded several non-profit organizations worldwide engaged in charitable activities such as schooling underprivileged children and promoting animal rights.
Lara Braitstein is Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhism at McGill University.
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There are many commentaries and translation of texts about mind training, but here we have a concise and clear road map to awakening. Rare are the books that are so concise (so much so, that one could be tempted to rush through it) yet convey so much. Shamar Rinpoche's complete mastery of this teaching is obvious in this book served by an impeccable translation by Lara Braitstein
It is not a book to browse through. It is soul food, a companion that will illuminate your path for years if you want to explore and unfold each slogan. Each word carries a deep meaning that is a key to unlock hidden treasure in your mind. It is a remedy to our afflictions such as craving, aggression and delusion.
One will have to be committed to the journey, it is about the first subject experience. It is about us and our biases, habits but also our beauty and dignity.
When reading this book I came to realize that I was the main actor in the change I want to see in the world. It starts at home and from there it will reach out and will make a difference because I became different.
Through seven steps, that are not mere philosophy or theory but an invitation to explore and make my own experience, light progressively chases darkness away. I become a better person and my skills and insight are liberated so that my interaction with the world is richer and healing.
It is not my book to take on a deserted island. It is the book I take into the jungle of my life with these "delicious demons" called my human fellows.
Trungpa Rinpoche uses what could be called the "crazy mind" approach to lojong. In discussing the slogans he employs real life western oriented examples and combines it with very forceful writing that "wakes the reader" into practice. A great example of this is Trungpa Rinpoche's commentary on the slogan "Drive all blames into one." At the same time Trungpa Rinpoche's commentary is solidly based upon classical Buddhism and thorough academic understanding behind the slogans. Also much of this book is derived from the transcripts of seminaries he conducted, so the style of the book is conversational and engaging.
In contrast Shamar Rinpoche's commentary is exclusively based upon classical Tibetan Buddhism practice. While he uses very few real life examples, his commentaries on many of the slogans are often much deeper than Trungpa Rinpoche's. I would refer the reader to the slogan to "First, Train in the Preliminaries" as an example. Shamar Rinpoche goes into great detail to describe the preliminary concepts of Tibetan Buddhism and also discusses proper meditation practice. While Shamar Rinpoche's commentaries may be in more detail and may lack the passion of Trungpa Rinpoche's version, they none-the-less are filled with compassion and pleasant to read.
Overall, I would refer first to Trungpa Rinpoche's lojong commentaries because they are more immediate and accessible. Afterwards, I would read Shamar Rinpoche's commentaries to go deeper into lojong teachings. I consider both books indispensable and most highly recommend them for someone seriously interested in lojong training.
Book can give a lot of answers and show the way to wisdom for those who are ready to give a time for practice tehniques of meditation.
It contains easy readable information but true benifits and understandig will come only by reading and practising it in everyday life.
For some one it will work, for some one not. It takes a time to find it out. Results depends on ones discipline and will to transform.
It is definetly not "another spiritual book", wich you read and short after forget about it.
For me it is more like self tarnsformation handbook from buddhist perspective. It is worth to have it and re-read it from time to time to keep yourself "on track"