Read Taking the Leap: Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears (Shambhala Library) by Pema Chödrön Free Online
Book Title: Taking the Leap: Freeing Ourselves from Old Habits and Fears (Shambhala Library)|
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The author of the book: Pema Chödrön
Edition: Shambhala Library
Date of issue: September 11th 2012
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Now this little book took me a while to get into, I started it, got busy, tried again, got distracted - until finally I did take the leap, and put all else aside and read it last week. Why the delay, I wonder? I suspect I was a little reluctant to actually let go of a few old habits.
It's funny how you do make the time for books, right when you are ready to recieve their message.
I loved this one for the introduction to the concept of 'Shenpa'. The emotions that rise up in us (rage, frustration, greed, boredom) and which we usually act on with mindless repetition, and usually with extremely unproductive results. And all it takes is a breath. A moment of recognition, and that split second of turning reaction, into thoughtful recognition, acknowledgement, understanding and finally, choice, instead. I'm spotting Shenpa before it overwhelms me now, and giving it my attention. To find out the story that underlies it, to see if I can't manage it in a different way - and change the stories going forward. Wonderful insights.
Ditto, her story about having to sort out her mother's belongings after she passed away. For someone desperate to achieve some minimalism in my life, this story was also helpful in allowing me to understand the 'stories' we attach to inanimate objects, and how we can allow those to dictate our lives in unhelpful ways.
I definitely want to read more by this author!! But for now, I need to breathe a bit deeper, sit a bit more often, and recognise 'Shenpa' as it arises in my life. And most importantly, remember the one underlying theme that grabbed me the most .... that every other living being on this planet feels emotions pretty much exactly the same way I do. Maybe not at the same time, or for the same reasons, but pain, disappointment and anger - they all feel the same in all of us. There is something about that, that makes me want to give every other person on the planet a hug today.
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Read information about the authorAni Pema Chödrön (Deirdre Blomfield-Brown) is an American Buddhist nun in the Tibetan tradition, closely associated with the Kagyu school and the Shambhala lineage.
She attended Miss Porter's School in Connecticut and graduated from the University of California at Berkeley. She taught as an elementary school teacher for many years in both New Mexico and California. Pema has two children and three grandchildren.
While in her mid-thirties, she traveled to the French Alps and encountered Lama Chime Rinpoche, with whom she studied for several years. She became a novice nun in 1974 while studying with Lama Chime in London. His Holiness the Sixteenth Karmapa came to England at that time, and Ani Pema received her ordination from him.
Ani Pema first met her root guru, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, in 1972. Lama Chime encouraged her to work with Trungpa, and it was with him that she ultimately made her most profound connection, studying with him from 1974 until his death in 1987. At the request of the Sixteenth Karmapa, she received the full bikshuni ordination in the Chinese lineage of Buddhism in 1981 in Hong Kong.
Ani Pema served as the director of the Karma Dzong, in Boulder, CO, until moving in 1984 to rural Cape Breton, Nova Scotia to be the director of Gampo Abbey. Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche gave her explicit instructions on establishing this monastery for western monks and nuns.
Ani Pema currently teaches in the United States and Canada and plans for an increased amount of time in solitary retreat under the guidance of Venerable Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche.