Love, compassion, and peace - these words are at the heart of all spiritual endeavors. Although we intuitively resonate with their meaning and value, for most of us, the challenge is how to embody what we know: how to transform these words into a vibrant, living practice. In these times of conflict and uncertainty, this transformation is far more than an abstract ideal; it is an urgent necessity. Peace in the world begins with us. This wonderfully appealing offering from one the most trusted elders of Buddhism in the West is a warm and engaging exploration of the ways we can cultivate and manifest peace as wise and skillful action in the world.
This charming book is illuminated throughout with lively, joyous, and sometimes even funny citations from a host of contemporary and ancient sources - from the poetry of W.S. Merwin and Galway Kinnell to the haiku of Issa and the great poet-monk Ryokan, from the luminous aspirations of Saint Francis of Assisi to the sage advice of Thich Nhat Hanh and the Dalai Lama.
Joseph Goldstein has been leading insight and loving-kindness meditation retreats worldwide since 1974. He is a cofounder of the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Massachusetts, where he continues as one of the resident guiding teachers. In 1989, together with several other teachers and students, he established the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies and, later, The Forest Refuge. A seminal figure in the emergence of Buddhism in the West, Joseph is the author of numerous books including One Dharma. He lives in Barre, Massachusetts.
"This small book conveys with clarity and concision some of the spiritual teachings and practices we urgently need to help balance the materialism of our age--compassion, love, kindness, a skillful mind, and a peaceful heart."
– from the foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama
"This small book reveals the need to combine faith with practice, freedom with responsibility, and action with contemplation...Grounded in the basic trainings of body, speech, and mind, this little text is illuminated by the kind of humor and personal insights that inspire even seasoned practitioners, while pithy practice guidelines keep the journey on track."
– Eastern Horizon
"In this short but substantive volume, Joseph Goldstein, who lectures and leads retreats around the world, presents his thoughts on the practice of compassion, love, kindness, restraint, a skillful mind, and a peaceful heart as an antidote to the materialism of our age."
– Spirituality and Practice
"In this new book, one can 'hear' Joseph Goldstein's characteristic voice--down-to-earth, good-humored, keenly interested in the play of mind."
– Inquiring Mind
"The absence of peace, says vipassana (insight) meditation teacher Joseph Goldstein, is why our minds and our world can spin out of control. Peace, he says in this very readable book, is the foundation for healing. Without it, he says, we cannot be of real help to others. Goldstein's writing, the poetry, haiku and passages by other teachers--the Dalai Lama, St. Francis of Assisi, Thich Nhat Hanh and others--are a fertile ground to inspire peace and gauge progress."