Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Right Now I'm Reading . . . .

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I read multiple books at a time.  I generally have anywhere from 15-30 books checked out from my library at a time.  My husband is a little amazed by that.  He likes to focus on one or maybe two books at a time.  I like a little variety-especially if some of my books are nonfiction works.  Right now I am reading, slowly for me, Buddhism For Beginners by Thubten Chodron.

I am reading this book slowly-maybe a chapter a day.  It is almost dialogue style.  Essentially, Chodron has collected many common questions about various aspects of Buddhism and answers them in a clear, accessible fashion.

"Buddhism talks about accepting our suffering and also about feeing ourselves from suffering.  Are these contradictory? 
No.  Accepting our difficulties doesn't mean becoming apathetic and resigned to suffering.  Rather, our experience at a particular moment--whatever it is--is the reality of that moment.  When we refuse to accept this, we find ourselves in conflict with reality.  On the other hand, we can accept our present unhappiness and still work to free ourselves from future unsatisfactory experiences.  For example, if we accept the transient nature of our world, we will cease trying to control things that, by their nature are out of our control.  We will be at peace with whatever life presents and simultaneously work to benefit others with an altruistic aspiration that appreciates every being's potential to transcend suffering and become enlightened."
Chodron, 42-43

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