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Swallowing the River Ganges : A Practice Guide to the Path of Purification Paperback – January 1, 2001
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Top Customer Reviews
The final chapters of the book are dedicated to the insight knowledges that one attains in the last stages of practice. The power of these ending chapters and of the book as a whole lies in its approachability and usefulness as a resource text for those who follow this "sure heart's release." The power also comes from the simple fact that shouts from these pages over and over, enlightenment is possible. It is one of the possibilities afforded us in our ordinary human lives. This truth comes through this succinct and clear book again and again as the steps to the path of freedom are quietly set down for us. For 2500 years the truths presented on these pages have come through many voices, has been written by many hands, has come to us through many loving hearts through the centuries. Matthew has stewarded its birth into a more modern form and presentation, but it is still One Truth. This book belongs on the shelf of every serious student of Dharma. It is a work that reveals the genius of the Buddha's teachings and how they fit together in an alive and powerful system of understanding that brings us ever closer to the freedom that is already present in our lives.
The author, Matthew Flickenstein, takes aim at what most of us commonly call vipassana (insight) meditation. He gives a pretty surprising investigation into both it's benefits, and what sometimes can lead to actual drawbacks. The purpose of insight meditation, he points out, is to simply see things as they really are. Reality as it is. In order for that to happen, we need to not discriminate what we are aware of, we must be truly be aware of all that arises, without grasping or even resisting any of our experiences. But whenever we move our concentration in a specific direction, such as the breath, we are subtly forming a purpose and we are no longer communicating "no preference" in our awareness of what we are experiencing.
This book goes into much more specific detail about the benefits and drawbacks of certain styles of practice, something I could never summarize in the confines of such a review. Matthew Flickenstein presents us with a most intriguing body of work here, a priceless companion on our road of discovery and introspection. So what are you waiting for? Buy it!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I feel a deep measure of gratitude to the author.