The Dharma teachings in this book are taken from recordings of the Thai Forest Monk Ajahn Chah. As such they are folksy and often humorous. But, they represent one of the clearest representations of the Theravada path of Buddhism you are likely to find. The Theravada path is, at least until recently in the West, the lesser known of the two major divisions of Buddhism. In recent years the interest in this path, which places emphasis on the Monastic life and strict meditation, has grown. But, for the most part, those interested have not had the wealth of printed material that is available on Zen or Tibetan paths. Ajahn Chah often uses examples from Zen and other Buddhist paths. While at one time the Theravada path was most common path, it has, over the centuries, had less influence in the West. This book, along with the works of Jack Kornfield and Joseph Goldstein, gives us a powerful view into that approach to Buddhism and its relevance to the development of spirituality in the...
Ajahn Chah devoted some 25 years to the teaching of Buddhism to Thai monastics up until the time of his death in 1992, as well as various laypersons. He always had an uncanny ability to explain the Dharma in a way that made your belly move with laughter, while at the same time helping to open your mind, too. His ambition was to always present the Dharma in a way that even the most uneducated could derive something from, and he succeeded 10-fold. Paul Breiter has done an excellent job here translating this beloved teachers most profound dharma talks encompassing a wide range of Buddhist topics: ethical conduct, impermanence, right view and right action, among others. Ajahn Chah instructs us all to steer completely clear from recklessness in our lives, be that with our awareness of life itself or in regards to other people. He gives us the practice and plan of what the very title of this book suggests, "being dharma." Likewise, as texts like The Tao Te Ching have asserted...
Written by the much-loved Thai Buddhist master Ajahn Chah (1919-1992), Being Dharma: The Essence Of The Buddha's Teachings is a clear, informative, straightforward, open-handed approach to the wisdom of the Buddha. From the Path, to Peace, and life beyond Cause and Effect, chapters cover numerous core aspects of Buddhism in language that lay readers can easily follow. Being Dharma is an enthusiastically recommended introduction to Buddhist studies and a welcome contribution to the growing library of Buddhist literature available to western readers.
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