Below are some books I’ve met since mid-May. This is of course the most important page of this website, the page with the books.
Pema Chodron — Incredible learner and teacher.
- Start Where You Are — The first book I read about Buddhism and still the best introductory book I have found.
- Taking the Leap — This book is about how to weaken our habits.
Chogyam Trungpa — I love this guy. Essential. His books are mostly lectures his students have transcribed and put into book form. They are extremely good books. The titles are not necessarily his.
Dzigar Kongtrul — Unique sensibility. Very humble. Not slick. A good teacher, good presence.
- Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind — I just began reading this one and like it a lot. It is about preserving beginner’s mind. Expertise often takes us away from clear seeing.
Thich Nhat Hanh
- You Are Here — Good book. His writing is so mild that it’s not always easy for me to get into, but I still find it worthwhile. A good article on non-self. If I remember the “hat Han” part, then I can sometimes remember how to spell his name.
Norman Fischer — The writing has a more ruminative pace, compared to the concision of writers like Chodron, Trungpa and Kongtrul. Still, he has good ideas and his pace is working better for me recently.
- Training in Compassion — Ruminations on the Lojong slogans. He does a good job pointing out what we might not have thought of ourselves. He doesn’t try to be a final authority, which is good. He just provides an example or two of how we might think about each slogan, without any sense that it’s the only way.
- What is Zen?
- Buddhism Is Not What You Think — Good book. Worthwhile. Just keep in mind that he presents certain of his opinions as if all Buddhists would agree with him, when really there is often variation of opinion.
- Right Concentration: A Practical Guide to the Jhanas — This book is pretty advanced, and I haven’t gotten through it yet, but I like the writing very much. It’s highly “readable,” I want to say. This won’t be the last Brasington I read.
The Buddhist Scriptures. This is a selection of the scriptures edited by Edward Conze and published by Penguin. 1959. Very interesting.