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Start Where You Are: A Guide to Compassionate Living (Shambhala Classics)

by Pema Chödrön

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Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
It took me a while to read this book. Months, to be honest. But it was the right speed for me. I wouldn't read it for a couple of days, and then I'd read 2 pages. Always it felt like those two pages were perfect for what was happening in my life right then.

If you are unfamiliar with the works of Pema Chodron, I recommend this book. She's an American Buddhist, and her familiarity with the every day worries of Americans makes her book very accessible. ( )
  Jessica_Olin | Apr 1, 2013 |
This book is a real mixed bag, at least from my non-expert perspective. At times, Chodron's wisdom really shines through. Other times, though, she gets a bit too much into a hippy-esque tone which tends to make her ideas seem trite. The book is essentially a compilation of interpretations of certain slogans used by the branch of Buddhism she practices. Sometimes her interpretation of a slogan seem almost intentionally perverse. It's as if she is thinking "the slogan can't mean what it says on its most literal level, so I'm free to make it mean something else." I don't know if this is a fair criticism. For all I know, there are centuries of tradition behind her interpretations. Nevertheless, I sometimes couldn't see the point she was making about the given slogan. ( )
  wrmjr66 | Oct 15, 2011 |
This book is subtitled "a guide to compassionate living," that basically says it all. It is a guide to the Buddhist teachings of opening the heart and mind through tonglen meditation and lojong slogans. She presents ancient wisdom in a clear and productive way. I am grateful for this gifted teacher and healer. Her writings are touch-stones for my life. ( )
  lepapillonvert | Mar 11, 2008 |
Read it! ( )
  Hanuman2 | Dec 19, 2007 |
I turn to this book whenever I am stressed and I find peace. It's not always easy to read, because it requires self-reflection, but it's really worth it in the end. ( )
  anitahellerworker | Nov 11, 2007 |
Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0877738807, Paperback)

Pema Chodron is a Buddhist nun for regular folks. Having raised a family of her own, she doesn't shy away from persistent troubles and the basic meatiness of life. In fact, in Start Where You Are, Chodron tries to get us to see that the faults and foibles in each of us now are the perfect ingredients for creating a better life. No need to wait for a quieter time or a more settled mind. The trick Chodron says is to repattern ourselves, to transform bad habits into good by first opening ourselves to the groundlessness of existence. When the cliff dissolves beneath our feet, fear has a way of actually lessening. Fearlessness opens the way to recognizing our pushy egos and that rather than being cursed with original sin, we are blessed with an original soft spot--the squishy feeling inside that we all have, that is the seat of true compassion, and that we all do our best to armor over. Chodron is the kind of teacher who has seen it all and keeps pushing us back into ourselves until there's no one left to wrestle with but a certain recalcitrant image in the mirror. --Brian Bruya

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:49:33 -0400)

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An American Buddhist nun explains how to become compassionate and fearless by accepting the pain in individual lives in their present state through the study of fifty-nine traditional Tibetan Buddhist sayings.

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