Start Where You Are by Pema Chodron
Download Start Where You Are by Pema Chodron PDF book free online – This is a beautiful, gift book edition (with a ribbon marker) of a modern-day classic. Start Where You Are is an indispensable handbook for cultivating fearlessness and awakening a compassionate heart.
With insight and humor, Pema Chödrön, author of The Wisdom of No Escape and When Things Fall Apart, presents down-to-earth guidance on how to make friends with ourselves and develop genuine compassion toward others. The author shows how we can “start where we are” by embracing rather than denying the painful aspects of our lives. Pema Chödrön frames her teachings on compassion around fifty-nine traditional Tibetan Buddhist maxims, or slogans, such as:
• “Always apply a joyful state of mind”
• “Don’t seek others’ pain as the limbs of your own happiness”
• “Always meditate on whatever provokes resentment”
Working with these slogans and through the practice of meditation, Start Where You Are shows how we can all develop the courage to work with our own inner pain and discover joy, well-being, and confidence.
Table of Contents
From Publishers Weekly
“This book is about awakening the heart,” writes the American Tibetan Buddhist teacher Chodron. “If you have every wondered how to awaken your genuine compassionate heart, this book will serve you as a guide.” This is a broad and simple statement, and those unfamiliar with When Things Fall Apart or other titles by Chodron may rightfully fear that a volley of nonsensical fuzzballs is on the way. Good bedtime reading, perhaps, but in the decade since its original 1994 publication, there seems to be even less grounds to claim that all humans are innately capable of openness, clarity and compassion (or “bodhichitta”).
What follows, however, is a savvy, down-to-earth contemporary version of an old Tibetan Buddhist technique for mind training, or “lojong,” supported by instructions in basic sitting meditation practice (to cultivate tranquility and insight) and “tonglen”a meditative technique that involves taking in the dark, heavy, negative emotions and sending out an attitude of light, compassionate embrace, a warm spaciousness, in its place. Chodron supplies a pithy contemporary analysis for each of 59 “slogans” that make up the teaching behind this practice. “There is a saying that is the underlying principle of tonglen and slogan practice: Gain and victory to others, loss and defeat to myself,” she writes. Far from being as masochistic as this may sound to Western ears, however, the aim is get people to unclench the heart and mind, to dare to taste defeat. Although far from easy, Chodrons humane, incisive approach can help any sincere reader learn to relate to fear and pain and pleasure and joy in a way that will open their hearts to the richness of their own lives and all life.
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Review of Start Where You Are by Pema Chodron
“Gives down-to-earth instructions for walking the Buddhist talk of compassion.” —Shambhala Sun
“As one of Pema Chödrön’s grateful students, I have been learning the most pressing and necessary lesson of all: how to keep opening wider my own heart.” – Alice Walker
About the Author
Pema Chödrön is an American Buddhist nun in the lineage of Chögyam Trungpa. She is a resident teacher at Gampo Abbey in Nova Scotia, the first Tibetan monastery in North America established for Westerners. She is the author of many books and audiobooks, including the best-selling When Things Fall Apart and Don’t Bite the Hook .