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The Heart of the Revolution: The Buddha's Radical Teachings of Forgiveness, Compassion, and Kindness

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  578 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
“The Buddha’s teachings are not a philosophy or a religion; they are a call to action and invitation to revolution.”

Noah Levine, author of the national bestseller Dharma Punx and Against the Stream, is the leader of the youth movement for a new American Buddhism. In Heart of the Revolution, he offers a set of reflections, tools, and teachings to help readers unlock their
ebook, 224 pages
Published April 5th 2011 by HarperCollins e-books (first published April 1st 2011)
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Apr 08, 2011 Jasmine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american
So yesterday I wrote a really half assed review of this book because I still haven't written a review for hatter m, and I didn't want to get behind and I was super excited about starting never the face and I need to finish kraken ect ect ect. But this book deserves better than that as far as I'm concerned.

Reading this was really about getting back to my roots. Noah Levine's Dharma Punx: A Memoir was the buddhism book I ever read, and when I decided I wanted to really check out this buddhism thi
Aug 01, 2011 Electric rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a very down to earth approach to the "heart" aspect of buddhism that was a little neglected in his last book "against the stream". It feels good that I am not alone in struggle with meditations on compassion, forgiveness and love because it always seems to be so "hippie". Noah has been there but due to his positive experiences with insight meditation (the "wisdom" aspect of buddhism) gave it a very serious try. He shares his insights and a lot of very detailedinformation on meditation with us in ...more
Viv JM
Jul 02, 2011 Viv JM rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Levine's style is down to earth, concise and heartfelt. An excellent book with practical advice on meditations of forgiveness, compassion, equanimity. Includes a line by line explanation of the metta bhavana, which I found very insightful and relevant. One of the best Buddhist books I have read.
Nov 04, 2015 jess marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended by the TRL Reader's Advisory Peeps.
Dec 14, 2012 Shiri rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Covers the essential teachings of Buddhism in an accessible way - especially for people who have a hard time with religions in general. It shows how much the philosophy (which each individual is meant to verify in their own experience) is separate from the system that grew around it.
Jan 16, 2015 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found myself nodding in agreement a lot at Levine's interpretations. My eyes actually watered when he mentioned having a childhood picture of himself at his altar, to represent forgiveness. While reading, I took notes and began to see my spiritual beliefs at a much deeper level. I never wanted to be an atheist, but didn't wish to be attached to any particular religion. I appreciate religion itself more on the cultural level. Compassionate beliefs (in worship of a god or not) handed down throug ...more
Jul 31, 2011 heather rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-ebooks
I am a huge fan of Noah Levine. His interpretation and presentation of the Dharma has struck the chord of truth for me from the moment I became aware of his teachings. There are a few areas in which what I currently find to be true based upon my own direct experience differs some from what he finds to be true based upon his own direct experience; but even on those topics I find his perspectives to be enlightening, no pun intended, as they always drive me to investigate further and put my beliefs ...more
Jan 19, 2016 Vishnu rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: buddhism
Levine is known for presenting the teachings in a different and accessible way. I think he succeeds in this, for the most part. However, some of his departures resonated less with me. I wasn't exactly sure how he connected "mercy" and "forgiveness" to the Metta Sutta, though I he may be right that they are both important in terms of developing a strong, compassionate heart. Similarly, for my taste, he seems a bit too quite to "rewrite" key teachings to better suit his own interpretations. I agre ...more
Mar 16, 2015 Jess added it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
DNF @ 23%

So, this wasn't for me. I picked this up for one reason and one reason alone: I need to learn to manage the bullshit the public throws at me on any given day. Basically, I'm tired of taking other people's problems home with me at night. So I thought, "hey a book about meditation and compassion, that's exactly what I need!" Unfortunately, it is primarily an intro to Buddhism and no matter how well-written or accessible it makes Buddhism, I'm not looking to become a Buddhist. I also could
Apr 03, 2014 Stacy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was actually looking for more of Noah's personal story, but I think that was the book that was already checked out from the library. I did enjoy this one very much and found that it had gentle lessons and offered some practical techniques; however, although the instructions for meditating made me want to try it, the lengthy instructions were daunting to me. How will I ever remember the order in which to think about things and the sentences to keep in mind? Wish there had been a suggestion, or ...more
Matthew Snope
Sep 25, 2012 Matthew Snope rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Love(d) this book. The only few parts I skipped over were an overly-analyzed passage about the Metta Sutta, and a final note reducing human beings down, over-simplistically, to 3 types.
Levine's writing I found refreshingly clear, after struggling with some of HHDL's writings.
This makes a great companion book with Jack Kornfield's Meditation for Beginners.
Have recommended Levine's book to many and want my children to read it someday.
May 08, 2011 J rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very good, practical view of American Buddhism. Levine does a great job of using his own troubled past to illustrate the usefulness of Buddhism in present times. In line with the Buddha's teachings, he also interprets many of the more religious tenets of Buddhism (e.g. karma) in a way that feels more true to current times.
Brian Baker
Jan 14, 2013 Brian Baker rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: buddhism
I've read a lot of books about Buddhism from different authors. Noah Levine makes it readable. He writes in such a way that a new generation of Buddhists can discover themselves in the Dharma. This is a wonderful book and I'm looking forward to more writings from Noah.
Gareth Young
Good but not great. He has a great voice and this is very accessible, but I found him rushing too much in places, such as the very compressed exercises and the very short chapter at the end on tonglen.
Nov 26, 2014 Kate rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
finished this on a train ride--always good to check in and remind myself of the principles I try to practice. I especially liked noah's layman explanations of Buddhist thought and practices, which makes sense because I really enjoy the dharmapunx podcasts.
Steven Elliott
Apr 01, 2015 Steven Elliott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Inspiring and revolutionary voiced, this book speaks to the changing Buddhist spirit and what has to happen in the community. He doesn't mince words but speaks with clarity and vision. Some of the meditations could have been edited down for length, but it's still an impressive book.
Laurent Guillemard
More focused than "Against the Stream", "The Heart of the Revolution" builds on its bases with a more traditional meditation-centered approach but always with an irreverent "don't believe the hype" punk side. I love Noah's no-nonsense secularist approach of Buddhism.
Oct 28, 2012 Marla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the most concise, easy to read "how to" book on meditation I've ever read. Something for beginners and experienced meditators alike. I sometimes forget Buddha was a revolutionary. Very well done.
Aug 31, 2014 Anna rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Highly accessible book on forgiveness and lovingkindness. A little bit navel-gazey, and Levine makes numerous sweeping generalizations that seem out of place and are not substantiated. Nevertheless, an enjoyable quick read that clearly and insightfully (ha) explains these practices.
Apr 20, 2011 Bryan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Noah Levine has a particular style of teaching to which I react positively. This, his third book, did not disappoint, and to me revealed much of his own growth and understanding of Buddhist teachings.
Jan 22, 2015 Meredith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good intro to Buddhism, introducing a few elements from Buddhist psychology I was unfamiliar with.
Rizzo Smith
Sep 10, 2011 Rizzo Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Been a Dharma Punker for quite some time now, finally got around to reading one of Levine's books. A great reference book for those interested in Dharma, and keeping it simple.
I loved this book! I read it a while ago though so I'll have to give a re-read for a better review.
LB Kell
Aug 20, 2015 LB Kell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: yoga-books
so good
Joe Tedesco
Jan 13, 2013 Joe Tedesco rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spiritual
Great read. Lots of practical wisdom such as mantras to say both in meditation and in the hours of the rest of your day! This teacher brings a great perspective to walking the spiritual path.
Emily Johnson
Jun 27, 2015 Emily Johnson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jul 22, 2011 Alex rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every human being
Recommended to Alex by: discovered treasure
Was very happy. Thoughts and wisdom flow from his heart/mind, which confronted my heart/mind to deal with some major obstacles on my journey. All our love Noah Levine.Blessings Alex Hopper
Oct 13, 2011 J.T. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a fan of the writing style of Noah Levine. I also really like they way he breaks things down and makes them simple and practical, though rarely easy!
Molly Rice
Jan 08, 2016 Molly Rice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love Noah's writings and teachings. This one, in particular, really drove home the difference between mercy and compassion. It has stayed with me and helped bring my practice off of the cushion
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American Buddhist teacher, author and counselor known for his philosophical alignment with Buddhism and punk ideology. Identifies his Buddhist beliefs and practices with both Theravadan and Mahayanan traditions. Holds a masters degree in counseling psychology from CIIS. He has helped found several groups and projects including the Mind Body Awareness Project], a non-profit organization that serves ...more
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“We become attached to each pleasant thought, feeling, taste, smell, and sound. But because everything is impermanent, we’re craving and clinging to fleeting experiences. Pleasure never lasts long enough; we can never sustain enough pleasure to satisfy the cravings. Suffering is the inevitable outcome of clinging to experiences that are unsustainable. Each moment of attachment or clinging creates some level of suffering in our lives as we grieve the loss of pleasure. What we often forget is that we have the power and ability simply to let go, and each moment of letting go is an act of mercy. The subversive act of nonclinging is an internal coup d’état.” 6 likes
“Forgiveness is not just a selfish pursuit of personal satisfaction or righteousness. It actually alleviates the amount of suffering in the world. As each one of us frees ourselves from clinging to resentments that cause suffering, we relieve our friends, family, and community of the burden of our unhappiness. This is not a philosophical proposal; it is a verifiable and practical truth. Through our suffering and lack of forgiveness, we tend to do all kinds of unskillful things that hurt others. We close ourselves off from love, for example, out of fear of further pains or betrayals. This alone—a lack of openness to the love shown to us—is a way that we cause harm to our loved ones. The closed heart lets no one in or out.” 5 likes
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