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Tibetan Buddhism From the Ground Up: A…

Tibetan Buddhism From the Ground Up: A Practical Approach for Modern Life (original 1992; edition 1993)

by B. Alan Wallace

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Title:Tibetan Buddhism From the Ground Up: A Practical Approach for Modern Life
Authors:B. Alan Wallace
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Tibetan Buddhism from the Ground Up: A Practical Approach for Modern Life by B. Alan Wallace (1992)



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The title and subtitle are an accurate description of this book's contents. I would say the emphasis is on the ground more than the up, which is in fact the only practical approach for modern life. The author covers the basics of Buddhism at length and adequately, with a strong emphasis on Buddhist ethics. Mahayana philosophy is dealt with at some length. The section on Tantra at the end is quite short, but very cogent.

So we have a straightforward and fairly complete overview of Buddhist doctrine in its various forms. There are occasional very sharp insights and unusually good explanations of certain concepts, but overall the treatment is on the routine side. There is very limited discussion of meditation or practice; the emphasis is on doctrine and philosophy. The writing is pedestrian. Overall, though there is nothing really wrong with this book, I don't recommend it. There are many general introductions to Buddhism that explain the doctrine as well or better, and also provide some instruction on practice. Those looking for extended treatment of Vajrayana or of Tibetan religious culture will be disappointed. ( )
  anthonywillard | May 30, 2015 |
An excellent introduction to the path leading to Dzogchen by an accomplished American master. ( )
  dirkjohnson | Aug 1, 2008 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0861710754, Paperback)

Here at last is an organized overview of Tibetan Buddhism's teachings, beginning with the basic themes of the sutras — the general discourses of the Buddha — and continuing through the esoteric concepts and advanced practices of Tantra. Unlike other introductions to Tibetan Buddhism, Tibetan Buddhism from the Ground Up doesn't stop with theory and history, but relates timeless spiritual principles to the pressing issues of modern life, both in terms of daily experience and a uniquely Western world view. This fascinating, highly readable book asks neither unquestioning faith nor blind obedience to abstract concepts or religious beliefs. Rather, it challenges the reader to question and investigate life's issues on a personal level, in the light of an ancient and effective approach to the sufferings and joys of the human condition.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:04 -0400)

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