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Insightful look at Buddhist philosophy and spirituality applied in our lives

  • Dec 1, 2010
  • by
Dzogchen brings the reader a great overview of the core ideas of Buddhist spirituality and the process of awakening and liberation. This book covers basic tenets of Buddhism while examining how people in modern America and any other culture can integrate these ideas about spiritual freedom and awakening into their lives. The writer's style is clear and articulate, making Buddhist ideas accessible and meaningful to the reader.
The image of the rebel is a valuable one, as awakening requires one's spiritual nature to rebel against the patterns and limitations that influence the human mind in its multiple aspects. Rebel Buddha offers guidance and suggestions for helping us be mindful and break through the mind's attachment to illusions. Let go of the drama and embrace the dharma could be a motto to connect with these teachings. The Buddhist path teaches us to awaken to our essential Self, which is paradoxically a sort of "no-self" state or state of emptiness.
This book is a fairly smooth read and shares ideas in a concise manner. Whether someone is already familiar with Buddhist concepts or not they will be able to follow what Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche has to share. His own experiences as a Buddhist teacher in the West help him make these teachings relatable to people who are looking to apply these philosophies and practices in the midst of a rather conventional Western lifestyle. The trappings that people may associate Buddhism or other Eastern philosophies with are shown to be unnecessary - whatever culture or environment one is in he/she may apply these practices of awakening. This relatively short book is definitely worth reading for anyone seeking spiritual growth and personal transformation.

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review by . October 30, 2010
Ponlop, part of the global diaspora, argues for Buddhism removed from the Asian decorations that cloak its power. He presents an accessible program of self-liberation from mental constructs and religious dogma. He expands upon two lectures that present dharma teachings with nearly no Buddhist vocabulary or Tibetan references. He explains how Buddhism in a globalized era demands freedom from exotic rituals, colorful trappings, or hidebound formulas that hold back both jaded Easterners and gullible …
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Jed Shlackman ()
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Wisdom seeker, healer, writer, counselor, music lover, metaphysical explorer
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Scholar and teacher Dzogchen Ponlop (Mind Beyond Death) focuses on the experiential aspects of Buddhism that transcend culture, in the vein of writer-teacher Stephen Batchelor's idea of "Buddhism without beliefs." He argues that everyone has a "rebel Buddha" within that wants to wake up, be free, and see the truth in the midst of illusion. The traditionally educated Tibetan-American uses straightforward, informal language with fresh analogies to examine a range of basic and more advanced aspects of this wisdom tradition, such as the nonexistence of the self, compassion, and relationships with spiritual teachers. Meditation instructions are included in the appendix. The author's practical approach is disarming, especially when applying Buddhism to the challenges of everyday life. The content is based on two lecture series on dharma and culture; tighter editing would have eased the transition between the spoken and the written word. While more concise primers for the novice practitioner exist, more advanced students of Buddhism who want to explore newer voices may find this book of particular interest. (Nov.) (c)
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Books, Buddhism, Eastern Philosophy, Buddha


ISBN-10: 1590308743
ISBN-13: 978-1590308745
Author: Dzogchen Ponlop
Publisher: Shambhala

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