Mindfulness in Plain English
Since Mindfulness in Plain English was first published in 1994, it has become one of the bestselling — and most influential — books in the field of mindfulness. It’s easy to see why.
Author Bhante Gunaratana, a renowned meditation master, takes us step by step through the myths, realities, and benefits of meditation and the practice o...more
We have taken a flowing vortex of thought, feeling and sensation and we have solidified that into a mental construct. Then we have stuck a label onto it, 'me'. And forever after, we treat it as if it were a static and enduring entity. We view it as a thing separate from all other things. We pinch ourselves off from the rest of that process of et ...more
I have a meticulous system for taking notes when I read, but it didn’t work with Mindfulness in Plain English. Underlining 90% of the book doesn’t help highlight the most important lessons. This is the best book on mindfulness and meditation that I’ve read to date.
I read this book as a meditation refresher several years after I started meditating. I expected to take away a few tips on how to breathe better, ...more
This is more than the 3rd times I re-read this great book, after 3 years practicing meditation. Each time I read it, each time I learn more out of it. Certainly, I will re-read if after more meditation. If there is only one book to suggest for beginner meditators on the practice side, no doubt that I would pick this one.
It is a basic meditation manual. It does not attempt to cover a broad range of approaches. Rather it's focused on one specific type, namely mindfulness meditation, also known as Vipassana or insight meditation. The author is coming from a Theravāda Buddhist tradition. However, as the title implies, the material is given a straightforward presentation with minimal metaphysical baggage.
That might sound dry. It's not. The w ...more
Excellent overview of Vipassana meditation and why it's worth your time. Also an excellent articulation of the need and benefits of cultivating "loving friendliness" toward yourself, those you love, strangers, and even eventually toward ...more
Oh but wait, you can't want to achieve this state. Woops! I get the whole Buddhist thing but you can lay something out with out ...more
For those new to m ...more
This sums up my impression of the book.
In some ways, the book was a perfection introduction to meditation; but in the end, I was glad once I was done to write my own summary that amounted to three pages.
For me, thre ...more
He also goes into things like what meditation is (chapter 3), and what it isn’t (chapter 2). In my view, those two chapters shoul ...more
Step 1: Ditch the distractions.
Easier said than done! I actually listened to the audiobook of this which was the probably the worst format to ...more
If you stripped away the religious encrustation that has built up around the teachings of the Buddha, you would have a simple plan for life and Gunaratana shows the way by defining the purpose of meditation with a goal of insight.
The concept of the individual as a substantial thing and the endless pursuit of gain and avoidance of loss to the ego sentence us to misery. Through careful use of the mind, it is poss ...more
It's excellent and thorough. I read it as a book, but it is really more of a guide or manual. If I have any hope of learning to meditate properly, it is partly thanks to this book, and I will certainly be referring back to certain parts. I've been using the Headspace app for a while, and that is helpful, but I needed more context and theory, and a better understanding of w ...more
So, this book was helpful, interesting, simple.
I've never read a book where the author spends such time defining the scope of what he will and will not cover. If you're wondering: Buddhist Vipassana meditation.
In the end, I don't bel ...more
I am yet to try out Vipassana, but I am pretty eager after reading this book. IMHO, the book can be pared to at least half its length if the author were not so verbose. And as you can expect from a ...more
If you're interested in getting into meditation, I think this book is as good an entry point as any. There are many styles of meditation, but I really enjoy the no-frills vipassana style. It's all about seeing the truth and pure experience, so it's not woo or fluffy.