What does it mean to "meditate with the body"? Until you answer this question, explains Reggie Ray, meditation may be no more than a mental gymnastic —something you can practice for years without fruitful results.
In Touching Enlightenment, the esteemed author of five books about Buddhist history and practice guides you back to the original practice of the Buddha: a systematic process that results in a profound awareness in your body rather than in your head.
Combining the scholarship that has earned him international renown with original insights from nearly four decades practicing and teaching meditation, Reggie Ray invites you to explore:
-How to enter fully into communion with your embodied nature
-The insights of Tibetan yoga, from guidance on breathing and working with discomfort to its challenge to modern practitioners on the path to realization
-Why "rejected" experience becomes imprinted in the body —and how to receive it anew to reconstitute your human way of being
-Karma of cause and karma of result —taking full responsibility for your life
-Your three bodies—the physical, the interpersonal, and the cosmic
Ray, a student of Tibetan Buddhist master Ch gyam Trungpa Rinpoche, has written several other books and very evidently knows a great deal about meditation and the Tibetan Buddhist tradition as passed down by his unconventional guru. This book about the ultimate nonconceptual wisdom what we can know in our bodies is, paradoxically, highly conceptual and very slow going. The prose is labored ( a clear and accurate conceptual understanding of the subtle processes involved is necessary so we have the apparatus to receive, comprehend and give voice to our experience ). Frequently, Buddhist teachers use concrete examples or real-life stories to illustrate difficult or subtle points. Ray shares one important anecdote from his own life, but more tales from his or his students lives would help. The critique of Western overdependence on thinking is certainly familiar, so the author s starting point is not new. The visualization exercises he offers in the book s appendix are comparatively fresh. But these instructions are probably more effective heard than read, and Ray s publisher indeed offers an audio program of related meditation practices. This book could use hard editing and clearer, more concrete language and examples.