Books in Brief Fall 2003

Joan Duncan Oliver

Reading List for the Dalai Lama’s visit

If you want to bone up for the Dalai Lama’s teachings before his U.S. tour this September (see www.savetibet.org for his schedule), here is some recommended reading. The Art of Happiness at Work (Riverhead, August, $24.95, cloth) gives a taste of His Holiness’s everyday wisdom, in dialogues with psychiatrist Howard Cutler.

The Path to Bliss: A Practical Guide to Stages of Meditation (Snow Lion, 2003, $16.95, paper) contains traditional lamrim (“stages of the path”) teachings, introduced in the eleventh century by Atisha, an Indian monk.

For background reading for the Mind and Life Conference XI, “Investigating the Mind” (Cambridge, Massachusetts, September 13�14), a dialogue with scientists and academics on attention and cognitive control, see Choosing Reality: A Buddhist View of Physics and the Mind by B. Alan Wallace (Snow Lion, September, $16.95, paper). The book provides an update of Wallace’s analysis of the interface between Buddhism and science. A scholar and former Buddhist monk, he is copresenting with His Holiness at the Mind and Life conference. Stages of Meditation, a root text by Kamalashila; translated by Venerable Geshe Lobsang Jordhen, Losang Choephel Ganchenpa, and Jeremy Russell (Snow Lion, August, $16.95, paper), offers the Dalai Lama’s teachings on a ninth-century mind-training handbook he has called “a key that opens the door to all other major Buddhist scriptures.”

For teachings on Geshe Chekawa’s Seven-Point Mind Training and on the Root Verses on Indian Philosophies (which the Dalai Lama will discuss at the Beacon Theater in New York City, September 17-20) here are two texts: Buddhism with an Attitude: The Tibetan Seven-Point Mind Training by B. Alan Wallace (Snow Lion, September, $16.95, paper), is an accessible guide to the Tibetan Buddhist practice of lojong, or attitude training, first set down by Geshe Chekawa in the eleventh century. Buddhist Philosophy: Losang Gonchok’s Short Commentary to Jamyang Shayba’s Root Text on Tenets by Daniel Cozort and Craig Preston (Snow Lion, September, $16.95, paper) provides Buddhist and non-Buddhist views on the nature of reality, as set out by seventeenth-century Tibetan scholar Jamyang Shayba.

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