Resistance

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Although growing old and dying is inevitable, people still arrive at old age feeling betrayed by their bodies. The most ordinary aspects of life can be met with extraordinary resistance, and this resistance itself causes suffering. Once we stop denying the certainty of death, then we can take full advantage of the time that we have in this precious human form.”

Turning Confusion into Clarity: A Guide to the Foundation Practices of Tibetan Buddhism by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Helen Tworkov

Awareness

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Awareness: the ever-present knowing quality of mind, from which we are never separated for an instant. Even though normally we do not recognize awareness, we can no more live without it than we can live without breathing.”

Turning Confusion into Clarity: A Guide to the Foundation Practices of Tibetan Buddhism by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Helen Tworkov

Steady Mind

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Calm abiding describes a mind that abides in its own steadiness, a mind that is not always being pushed and pulled by circumstances.

Turning Confusion into Clarity: A Guide to the Foundation Practices of Tibetan Buddhism by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Helen Tworkov

Home is…

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People think of home as the place where they’re comfortable and everything’s okay.

The Dude and the Zen Master by Jeff Bridges and Bernie Glassman

From the introduction:

To me, this book is sort of like a snakeskin. A snakeskin is something you might find on the side of the road and make something out of—a belt, say, or a hatband. The snake itself heads off doing more snake stuff—getting it on with lady snakes, eating rats, making more snakeskins, et cetera.

Clarity and Confusion

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Just as the sun shines whether obscured by clouds or not, clarity exists in the midst of confusion and suffering.”

Turning Confusion into Clarity: A Guide to the Foundation Practices of Tibetan Buddhism by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Helen Tworkov

Where You Are

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In practice, it’s hard to grasp that right here, where you’re standing, is it. You can hear it over and over, but there’s a piece of you that doesn’t believe it. Instead, we work to get over there. And once we get over there, we reconsider: Oh no, this isn’t it, so now I have to get over there. Off we go again, trying to get to the next other shore. And once we get there, the whole thing starts again.

The Dude and the Zen Master by Jeff Bridges and Bernie Glassman

From the introduction:

To me, this book is sort of like a snakeskin. A snakeskin is something you might find on the side of the road and make something out of—a belt, say, or a hatband. The snake itself heads off doing more snake stuff—getting it on with lady snakes, eating rats, making more snakeskins, et cetera.

Wisdom Solves Problems

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“The current state of world affairs is a source of concern to all of us: the threat of nuclear war, widespread poverty and economic instability, social and political chaos, and psychological upheavals of many kinds. The world is in absolute turmoil. The Shambhala teachings are founded on the premise that there is basic human wisdom that can help to solve the world’s problems.”

Shambhala: The Sacred Path of the Warrior (Shambhala Classics) by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

From the Introduction:

I would like to make it clear, however, that this book does not reveal any of the secrets from the Buddhist tantric tradition of Shambhala teachings, nor does it present the philosophy of the Kalacakra. Rather, this book is a manual for people who have lost the principles of sacredness, dignity, and warriorship in their lives. It is based particularly on the principles of warriorship as they were embodied in the ancient civilizations of India, Tibet, China, Japan, and Korea. This book shows how to refine one’s way of life and how to propagate the true meaning of warriorship.

Change and Insight

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“The very first sign of waking up is the insight that we are not doomed to retrace our steps forever.”

Turning Confusion into Clarity: A Guide to the Foundation Practices of Tibetan Buddhism by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, Helen Tworkov

Laugh at Yourself

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Let me give you a wonderful Zen practice. Wake up in the morning, go to the bathroom, pee, brush your teeth, look in the mirror, and laugh at yourself. Do it every morning to start off the day, as a practice.

The Dude and the Zen Master by Jeff Bridges and Bernie Glassman

From the introduction:

To me, this book is sort of like a snakeskin. A snakeskin is something you might find on the side of the road and make something out of—a belt, say, or a hatband. The snake itself heads off doing more snake stuff—getting it on with lady snakes, eating rats, making more snakeskins, et cetera.

Pruning for Growth

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You have to prune a plant in order for it to grow. I find pruning to be very satisfying; I love the sure, swift sound of the clippers rhythmically slicing through a branch. With each cut, I know I’m clearing away the dead matter to make room for new growth. Periodic pruning isn’t just for plants; it’s a natural rhythm for all of us. Cleaning your closets, organizing your personal papers, getting rid of clutter, and spring-cleaning are all forms of pruning. I find that when the weather is warmer, people naturally recommit to living more active and healthy lives, which starts with internally pruning the parts of their lives that no longer nourish them. This internal pruning helps you discover your hidden potential for growth.

If the Buddha Came to Dinner: How to Nourish Your Body to Awaken Your Spirit by Hale Sofia Schatz