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Ending the Pursuit of Happiness: A Zen Guide

3.97  ·  Rating Details  ·  91 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
We all have a right to the pursuit of happiness - but could we actually be happier if we gave that whole thing up?

This surprising new book from Zen teacher, psychoanalyst, and critical favorite Barry Magid inspires us - in gentle and winking prose - to move on and make peace with the perfection of the way things actually are, including ourselves.

Magid invites us to conside
ebook, 208 pages
Published April 10th 2008 by Wisdom Publications (first published January 1st 2008)
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Siddhartha by Hermann HesseThe Art of Happiness by Dalai Lama XIVZen Mind, Beginner's Mind by Shunryu SuzukiWhen Things Fall Apart by Pema ChödrönPeace Is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh
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55th out of 61 books — 61 voters

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Ben Payne
Dec 14, 2013 Ben Payne rated it liked it
I listened to this book on audible.

It's a pretty nice zen book. Basically the premise is don't try so hard, don't overthink things so much, don't put so much pressure on yourself to improve yourself and seek happiness. It's a fairly good argument and I enjoyed the book. The first section is basically a rationalising of how zen and psychoanalysis can coincide and work together. I wasn't that interested in this section, so it loses points for that, unless that's your thing. Once it got to the meat
Linda Hollingsworth
I was originally attracted to this book when I learned that Barry Magid's Zen teacher was Charlotte Jocko Beck; some of her recounted talks were an important source of wisdom in my early years of meditation. In addition to working with people as a Zen teacher himself, Barry Magid is a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst. His years of focus in these interrelated areas has resulted in the insight that "enlightenment is real." But he also says in the introduction of this book that "...we will never know ...more
George Slade
Dec 21, 2014 George Slade rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
Although I enjoyed this book and the basic tenants of Zen that it describes, I get the feeling that it is not necessarily the best book with which to start the study or Buddhism or the understanding of Zen. Having said that, it did do a good job of making me realize that the search for self is really a search for something that already exist. Self is self, and does not need to be found, merely embraced.
Dec 29, 2011 Jennifer rated it liked it
The meshing of psychoanalysis and Zen didn't always go smoothly, but this is an interesting book. I liked some of his updating of old koans for more modern thought, as well as his discussions of Western philosophy (even when they didn't mesh so well).
Jun 30, 2011 Amber rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011
Excellent book!! A singular voice in American Zen literature. The quote on the back says it best:

"Thought-provoking. Magid makes us reflect on why and how we practice, challenging our common assumptions and hidden agendas directly."
Mike Porter
May 07, 2013 Mike Porter rated it liked it
Shelves: psychology, spiritual
More accessible than the previous book by Magid, I did find this one useful.
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