Relaxing into Meditation [paperback]
Paperback, 194 Pages
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What exercises and practices will help us to live a life free of stress? Ngakma Nor’dzin, a Western Buddhist Lama, guides us through relaxation and breathing exercises that lead into meditation. The meditation methods are described in friendly and accessible language, and will enhance the lives of those who practise them. Meditation is a life skill which increases well-being and creates happier and more fulfilling relationships. Relaxing into meditation draws on her experience teaching in community education. Ngakma Nor'dzin teaches internationally and is also the author of Spacious Passion, an introduction to Buddhist practice.
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Nov 6, 2010The chapters of this book describe in a very practical way a sequence of exercises in relaxation and meditation. The first six chapters are purely relaxation and breathing exercises then the seventh is a careful and very practical guide to the postures of sitting for meditation as a preliminary to the meditation practices described in the remainder of the book. Patterns so that meditators can make their own cushions and mats are included as an appendix. The author describes (and gives a pattern for) a sitting “band” used by Tibetan meditators. This fits around the back and knees and looks like a very comfortable and supported sitting position which I am looking forward to trying. The remaining chapters of the book describe more properly meditation practices although the first few practices could be used as both meditation and relaxation practices. So the book starts with relaxation practices and then phases gently on to meditation practices. The meditation practices have their roots... More > in the traditions of Tibetan Buddhism. There isn’t any kind of philosophy or religious dogma. It focuses completely on meditation as a skill, a practical skill than enhances life and promotes well being. Chapter twelve is the clearest introduction to the practice of meditation that I have heard or read but I hope many readers will come to know that in these words is the greatest of all possible gifts. The term Ngakma Nor’dzin uses for the primary meditation practice is “letting go”. This phrase by itself is a very clear and wonderful explanation of what meditation practice is. The book continues with chapters devoted to the support of this primary meditation practice with advice on how to begin and sustain a daily meditation practice as well as some exercises and yogic techniques that will help with the inevitable aches and pains of sitting still for a while as well as helping with the problems of sleepiness and restlessness. There are two contemplative practices described “friend, enemy and stranger” and also loving kindness meditation. These therapeutic and transformational practices are supported by the established “letting go” meditation practice. The final chapter is a longer review of all the practices described in the book and describes the benefits of a regular meditation practice. There is also some advice on the subject of a teacher and a supporting group to sit with. The book is an excellent introduction to meditation for the individual but will also be a very good resource for the introduction of a relaxation and meditation practice to a community group, a work-place group, adult education group or perhaps a nursing home. The author has taken particular care that the practices are accessible and safe for older people. The words of this book are full of love, joy and care. The publisher's web site is: http://aro-books-worldwide.org< Less
Aug 24, 2010Ngakma Nor’dzin takes you gently by the hand and with her you embark on a journey towards Openness, Kindness and Awareness. I found the warmth and ‘human-ness’ of her writing both refreshing and inspirational. Yé-tsal Khandro
Aug 17, 2010Relaxing into Meditation is the best book on meditation I've ever read, and I've been browsing them since the mid-70's. I say this because of the distinction made between relaxation and meditation, and the explanation of why relaxation must happen before meditation can begin. I have never seen it spelled out so clearly before, and in such a gentle, non-didactic manner. The writing draws you in and you come to love the teacher as if you were also a member of one of her meditation groups. I love that the chapters are short and not overwhelming. The author doesn't talk down to the reader and isn't too folksy. It is simple, but not "meditation for dummies." Some years ago I was watching a cable-access show presented by one of the guru-types that so frequently make appearances on such venues. One thing he mentioned came through loud and clear. In his discussion on meditating the guru explained that one can't just jump into meditation and expect it to "work." Rather, he... More > said that "the secret" is that your focus should be on "becoming meditative" rather than "meditating." That is, if you stop putting the emphasis on attempting to have the perfect meditation experience and just relax by performing the preliminaries, a meditative state will come upon you in a natural, non-forced manner. This struck me, for having read various meditation books through the years I would become motivated to practice but would stop and start, becoming bored or frustrated with my lack of "progress." Thus, hearing about the idea of not trying so hard at it, but just relaxing into "becoming meditative" was very appealing. Unfortunately, I never saw that presenter's show again so I never learned what it meant to "become meditative" - that is, until I read Relaxing into Meditation. The beauty of the text is in the presentation of the ways of becoming meditative, i.e. through breath-work, song or movement. Each exercise is enough in itself. There is no pressure to move on to the next technique, and the benefits of each level are given respect. That is not to say one is not invited to try other meditative techniques, just that each one is whole and respected in itself. The illustrations of the text along with the warm and friendly manner in which it is written make attempting each new meditative technique a real pleasure. This is a fabulous book for those who have been curious about meditation but were a little hesitant, feeling they didn't have "the right stuff" to be successful at it. The text is gentle and fun and calmly inspiring, and even if you have dabbled in meditation before you'll learn new ways to think about what you have been doing. Relaxing into Meditation is sure to become a classic.< Less
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- Aro Books worldwide (Standard Copyright License)
- First Edition
- Aro Books worldwide
- August 17, 2010
- Perfect-bound Paperback
- Interior Ink
- Black & white
- 0.76 lbs.
- Dimensions (inches)
- 6 wide x 9 tall
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