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Posts Tagged ‘Sharon Salzberg’

Here is the wanted list! The books are in no particular order: some were more relevant than others. The teachers I go back to and read frequently are Bhante Gunaratana and Thich Nhat Hanh. The Dalai Lama’s words are always wise. Sharon Salzberg and Joseph Goldstein also provided valuable insights. Tibetan Buddhist practices are much closer to yoga meditations from the tantras, that we have practiced over all these years, than they are to insight meditations and loving kindness meditations. I created a synthesis of various practices for June meditations.
No Mud No Lotus: The Art of Transforming Suffering by Thich Nhat Hanh
Peace is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh
Real Happiness by Sharon Salzberg
Insight Meditation by Sharon Salzberg and Joseph Goldstein
Mindfulness in Plain English by Bhante Gunaratana
Beyond Mindfulness in Plain Engish by Bhante Gunaratana
Meditation on Perception by Bhante Gunaratana
The Art of Happiness by The Dalai Lama and Howard C. Cutler MD
The Art of Happiness in a Troubled World by The Dalai Lama
The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts
(The behavioral economist and best seller Dan Ariely provides quantitative insight. Atul Gawande’s Being Mortal was also an important medical voice carrying more weight for many readers.)

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Are we able to experience happiness without anxiety? Is there anything that is not shadowed by anxiety or fear, some insecurity? For me, this has been a year of learning about anxiety and fear in preparation for our Mahasri Yoga July 2013 charity fundraiser (for BVMI) “Yoga for Fear and Anxiety”. The interest continues so in this post I would like to share, “The Anxiety of Happiness” by Sharon Salzberg in the December 16 online newsletter by the Mind & Life Institute. She is the co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts.

We often begin our meditation with a reflection on a passage or poem and Sharon does this in her writing with a section of Robert Frost’s poem Escapist-Never:

His life is a pursuit of a pursuit forever.
It is the future that creates his present.
All is an interminable chain of longing.

Here is the crux of the matter: “There is an anxiety in happiness that is solely based on the experience of pleasure (as nice as it is) because along with that dependence comes a need for the pleasure not to change.”

For the complete writing and the little frog story, please click on the link above.

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