Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings

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9781591790006: Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings

A daily primer for becoming a "warrior of compassion" in the world.

More than just a collection of "thoughts for the day," Comfortable with Uncertainty offers a progressive program of spiritual study with Tibetan Buddhist nun and bestselling author Pema Chödrön. Inspired by the Buddhist tradition of the 108-day retreat, Pema Chödrön offers essential concepts and practices to help listeners become a "warrior-bodhisattva," who courageously takes up the path of awakening compassion both for oneself and others.

Comfortable with Uncertainty does not assume prior knowledge of Buddhist thought or practice, making it a perfect introduction to Chödrön’s teaching. Passages explore topics such as loving-kindness, meditation, mindfulness, nowness, letting go, and working with fear and other painful emotions. Listeners learn practical methods for heightening awareness and overcoming habitual patterns that block compassion, while developing a working knowledge of tonglen, an on-the-spot meditation practice for easing emotional suffering – both our own and others.

Comfortable with Uncertainty, like a set of traditional Buddhist prayer beads, strings together 108 gems sure to be cherished for their guidance and inspiration. Read by Sounds True publisher Tami Simon.

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Review:

Comfortable with Uncertainty reads like a perfect companion guide to the traditional 108-day Buddhist retreat. In a day-by-day format, author Pema Chödrön dives into the soothing wisdom of Tibetan Buddhism, reminding us that groundlessness is the only ground we have to stand on. Each of her 108 teachings are brief (about two pages), and all of them are excerpted from longer discussions in Chödrön's previous bestselling books (The Places That Scare You and When Things Fall Apart). Nonetheless, newcomers as well as seasoned fans of Chödrön's writing will glean much from this training program for becoming a "warrior bodhisattva"--a term which, simply put, means one who aspires to act from an awakened heart.

Gradually, Chödrön guides readers beyond the tunnel vision of the self, expanding outward to include compassion for all of humanity. In the 12th teaching, "The Root of Suffering," Chödrön writes: "What keeps us unhappy and stuck in a limited view of reality is our tendency to seek pleasure and avoid pain, to seek security and avoid groundlessness, to seek comfort and avoid discomfort." In the 77th teaching, "Cool Loneliness," she suggests that the next time readers wake up in the morning feeling the "heartache of alienation" they try to "relax and touch the limitless space of the human heart." By the 101st teaching, Chödrön speaks to "taking refuge in the Sangha," meaning becoming warriors who are not only committed to taking off their own armors of self-pity, but are also committed to gently helping others do the same. Student warriors will also appreciate the glossary, bibliography, and resource guide in the back. --Gail Hudson

Book Description:

Chodron, a Buddhist nun, teaches the philosophy that she shares with students in her workshops, seminars, and meditation retreats around the world.

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