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Radical Acceptance: Embracing Your Life With the Heart of a Buddha (2003 original; edició 2004)
de Tara Brach (Autor)
Informació de l'obra
Radical Acceptance: Embracing Your Life With the Heart of a Buddha de Tara Brach (2003)
No hi ha cap discussió a Converses sobre aquesta obra.
This was recommended to me while I was going through a bout of pain during chemo. There's a lot there about using meditation as a way through. Definitely will use some of these practices. ( )
(preface) Well, it seemed to take an extraordinarily long time to get out of work so that I could type this preface. We’re not supposed to be on our phones on company time, and although physically I could probably do it, I don’t want to get all secretive like Putin, you know— Come with me, to abandoned elevator shaft. Yes, many secrets of Russian secret police discussed in secret elevator shaft: much good conversation….
ANYWAY, I largely forget what I wrote about this before, although I can sorta guess, but really in terms of reevaluating what spiritual psychology means to me I’d have to say that this more a sort of applied spiritual psychology, than Eastern philosophy. It’s not quite out there like say, A Year To Live, even if it doesn’t have a prosperity component like say Real Magic. How to make more money is not a classic Buddhistic topic, and it’s not a classic therapy topic, either; Freud’s early patients were mostly affluent housewives—people probably said things like, Well we know it’s not money—and Buddhist monks and nuns take vows of poverty. Of course, it is sorta a therapy book even if she’s a rebel therapist, and that case study/applied psychology thing is very science-y and I think has to put it over the edge into being considered applied spiritual psychology and not Eastern philosophy, right….
(You’ll notice that in my reviews I don’t restrict myself narrowly to the book.) Money isn’t a classic Buddhistic or a classic therapy topic, but sometimes, the thing is, to pursue truth or enlightenment, at least in an unconditional way, runs the risk of turning you into a spectator in your life, you know…. Which is an argument for action, and a big chunk of action is commercial, and therefore stigmatized, (and quite often frankly rather boring), but I don’t know. Some people get so dismissive, almost, of racism that they talk about it being because of the “billionaires”, you know, which is to let yourself off quite easy, and in a very limiting way.—Well, as long as I don’t put in too many hours this week, (leans back, stretches), the blacks should be a’right, you know.—And certainly if the /logic/ of a disempowering statement is off we’re really off the railroad tracks, you know. If I make a billion dollars selling tofu, is that the same as a billion dollars in prison labor or something? If it’s tofu, then even cows aren’t hurt, after all! Now, there are less ethical billionaires, but it’s a combo deal: mass unconsciousness combined with less ethical billionaires going along to get along, creates racist deals. But, although some people are in fact honestly concerned for their safety, there is this kinda masculine, muscular response where it’s like, I’m not gonna go along with anything—ever! And that creates problems too. (shrugs)
Anyway, it’s in between Wayne’s Real Magic book and the Buddhist death philosophy guy, and I’d have to say I think it leans a little closer to the former than the latter. And in terms of looking at what spiritual psychology is so-otherworldly-you-don’t-know-what-planet-you’re-on, which, hey, can certainly be fun at times, and which is less otherworldly than that, albeit slightly more educational-y than what I loosely call the “practical” books, I’d have to put Tara’s production here tentatively with the latter, the applied spiritual psychology, with a hint of philosophy.
(travel back in time lol)
I suppose it’s an open question how much religion or spiritual psychology is ideal, is beneficial, and how much is too little or too much. I suppose it’s possible to get too little. If you only read, I don’t know, Lenin and the Czars, or something, (they were an indie band back in the 80s…. ok, not really), then you might reject radical acceptance as Weird and different and anomalous and throw it out before you’d even finished. Personally my situation was different. I got too much of this sort of thing, so I rejected it because of that. I guess if you’re 24/7 metaphysics (or whatever) then you risk becoming like some 16th century cleric who spends his whole day doing nothing but reading liturgies, until only the ones he likes (because he wrote them himself), are good, and everything else is defective. Once you think of everything as being acceptance (formally) 24/7, then pretty soon nobody else can live up to this, because even the most passing reference to a forgiven fault will trigger you. And I mean, I’m not as new age as I used to be, and I have a new age hypocrite in my family, (oh, the honey of metaphysics is sweet, but so is the wine of anger!), so it’s easy to project…. I don’t know. But lately I’ve tried not to have too much of a meaning-heavy diet and I’ve read kinda incidental history and philosophy, and coming back to this now it seems very reasonable.
…. I mean, sure, she has the not unusual new age stance of admiring certain Christian religious teachers, like Mother Theresa or whoever, people who are good little boys and girls, while being negative about the nefarious land of sunsets in general. I mean, differences are there between different civilizations, and if you want to romanticize the East I guess that’s up to you, but any criticism that’s vague enough dissolves into weirdness. Christianity’s judgmental or whatever (vague), because of original sin, and when Buddha said life is dukkha, suffering, uneasiness, not-right-ness, Not Supposed To Be This Way, well, *starry-eyed*, my boyfriend tells it like it is.
But this attitude is in mostly in certain passages of the introduction or first part, and even there, can be exaggerated. It tapers off towards the middle and by the end, she’s practically challenging herself about it.
…. But in a way it’s the classic works-grace discussion, albeit using a different terminology. (Which can be a good thing: if I have to hear Again, Luther say, ‘…. NOT, ….’, golly, I’ll turn into a splode-y bomb!). Yes, improving yourself can be good, but only if you don’t think that you’re not loved.
So improve your chess game: an obviously useless skill….
Our good deeds are not the money with which we buy God’s magic.
…. She also deals with several familiar themes: Western mythology, ambivalence about sexuality, and psychotherapy…. Even though she’s presented herself as—and is not—this traveler from afar, this alien, doesn’t mean that she’s fundamentally mistaken in the way she views things.
So there’s that.
…. Also, like practically any good spirituality book, it can at times describe problems like a psychology book, although that’s less important, but also more importantly help heal them, in this case with radical acceptance. You don’t call good the behavior necessarily that, say, your mother’s an alcoholic and your father a Confederate sympathizer, but you accept that this is your life and this is how you feel about it, so that eventually you no longer feel that, I dunno—The Cheesy Man needs to be punished. (Jesus, cheez-its, The Cheesy Man.)
And it is nice to remember why you practice, and to get perspective, even though you don’t live your life just to understand what has been, in the encyclopedia, right.
…. Maybe the woman in the scripture who met the monk who thought her young attractive daughter was like a cold dead rock in winter didn’t have to burn his house down like a cracker gone wild, but the story does have a teaching element: the rejection of the impure life ought not be the rejection of life as such. Only that which is not so.
Also great 12 step story (Sarah from OA). Stereotypically Buddhists or whatever focus on step 11, which is also big with me, but, ironically given the AA dissident people, I think Sarah by saying it wasn’t her fault that she had cravings was doing step 1 work.
Now I understand something: affect of fear, the biological reaction, is like the jump scare you get in horror movies; untrainable and untreatable but trivial. The emotion of fear, the higher level cognitive and psychological fear, is what it’s Really supposed to deal with.
…. “‘We are facing together the possibility of immeasurable loss.’”
…. Re: self-compassion
On the one side, it’s hard not to be biased against/turned away from it by the person (obviously not a parent lol) who kinda has this bull-shitting God and creditors (oh my god) Compassion on herself, you know, kinda trying to get the payout to come out of the self-compassion machine; but there are also of course people (again: not parents or relatives) who are like, kinda…. proud of how ashamed they are of themselves, so he’ll be like, you know, I coulda been perfect, I am perfect, but then I talked back to my dead mom fifty-five years ago, ah, ah, I fumbled it when it came down to the wire. (If only he liked that Haim song lol.)…. So I mean, either way, you dwell on the shame and lash out, and you just either kill yourself quickly or slowly, based on which way works better for you, you know, which end of it.
…. Personally I can usually, now, you know, when I have some stupid fantasy that’s not goal-directed, like…. (movie scene)…. Or, you know, They won’t be ALLOWED to eat meat at the wedding, because I’ll be paying and I’m important and it’s mine, it’s all mine…. All mine…. I’m important…. But I mean, I don’t feel as ashamed of that anymore; it’s just bullshit, that’s all, so I don’t really act out as much…. I mean, sometimes I’ll indulge in unhealthy foods, although not like (fatticus americanus), you know. (Although obviously we look at people and we see status, so that’s a problem too.)
…. If you have compassion for others, you’ll act with integrity.
From toleration to respect—even for shitty, boring people. (😸😎).
Compassion meditation even for the person knee-deep in muck who doesn’t want to practice, you know.
…. And corporate people, who for me are hard to like because they’re so ordinary, you know. —What will life be like when I have 2.5% more money! What values can I ditch and how can I act out to get there!— But compassion can’t really choose, you know. It has to be there for everybody.
…. It is more like accepting the experience for existing for you or happening in you, the feeling for existing, than forgiving some story, you know. I’m not sure you can really forgive stories, if you like. I don’t know why, it’s just…. Well, there’s no use debating it. (“What is philosophy?”)
…. I guess that a parent of yours dying is in a way the last chance you have to be with them like you were before when you were born, parent and new-born.
…. I received this divine revelation from God in Jesus Christ (lol) that instead of calling it “shooting the breeze”, we could call it, “killing the kittens”. “Girl, Oscar and Tiffany are so idle; they’re killing the kittens for ten minutes now, and I don’t know when it’s going to end—or what they’ve really said.”
But of course, it’s not just what’s present as what’s missing…. Of course you don’t want to be angry, or to pity the other person, too much—in a way pity, but not as to the Other Person, with that separation of like I am so this and you are so that.
Most people can’t live in the forest 24/7, there ARE other people, and they’re not hell, but you don’t want to be too “normal” either. (Watching TV, Kelly and Ryan are interviewing like the One Black Guy Who Made It, because like, 1/3 of the film industry or whatever is Black, I Am Sure, and the point of life is to be glamorous, lol ‘course….
“But as long as you go to hell and I go to nirvana we’re good, right, right.”
“I’m not so sure, Socrates.”
…. The (therapy) stories, although quite American or whatever—she’s actually a Marylander— are actually quite nice. I think they must have annoyed me the first time (or two? I’m not sure) I read it, but I actually grew to enjoy them.
…. “As a Japanese proverb expresses, ‘Seeing pure awareness without engaging lovingly with our life is a daydream. Living in this relative world without vision is a nightmare.’”
As they say in the UK, CAN’T SAY FAIRER THAN THAT. (=the best thing).
Wow. Ten chapters in and I'm growing weary of hearing how hard it is for Tara (PhD in Psychology and an experienced practitioner of Buddhism) to accept the white, Christian, conservative, weathly business owner. "This can be especially hard when trying to see the goodness in a murder, THE CEO OF A CORPORATION THAT POLLUTES THE PLANET, a child molester." So between a murder and a child molester. Chapter 9 had this tone, so I put the book down, rested, tried to focus on the point, and started chapter 10.
Imagine me saying 'I use to hate people from Country Y or skin color E, but now I'm a psychologist and Buddhist, wrote this book, and can EVEN LOVE THEM!'
I've read many Pema, Thic Nhat Hanh, and other Budhist/Mindfulness/Meditation books. Grown, healing, and continue to grow and heal. Always felt "safe" if not respected and nurtured as a reader with those authors. Clearly they have something I want and need.
Chapter 9: "A CEO from a very large corporation (OH NO!) who wanted to set up a mindfulness program for his company's employees." THE EVIL BADTARD!
"The CEO fit exactly my white rich white man stereotype." She mentions that he "had been the focus" of a class-action lawsuit... Not that he was convicted or guilty, just that he had been the focus... She felt uncomfortable TALKING with him because she was expecting "that we'd be coming from very different and unfriendly planets." GAWD! I'm so Thankful that those along my path didn't see nor treat me like I was somewhere between a murder and a child molester. I wouldn't have even recognized a need for growth/healing/change if those along the path saw me as so vile. She does go on to say he was "human and real" though he "bragged a bit and was eager to be liked," you know, like a murdering child molester.
I understand she was explaining by example she once saw "them" as not part of the connected "us".
Conclusion.... Pick up a different book where you'll feel accepted as you are trying to learn about acceptance.
For the record, thankfully I'm only a white guy and a "small" business owner. I think I'd throw myself off a bridge if I was also Christian and/or wealthy.
Finished the book, and admit that it was only those two chapters I found distasteful. Less those two, I'd give the book 3.5 of 5 stars.
“Believing that something is wrong with us is a deep and tenacious suffering,” says Tara Brach at the start of this illuminating book. This suffering emerges in crippling self-judgments and conflicts in our relationships, in addictions and perfectionism, in loneliness and overwork--all the forces that keep our lives constricted and unfulfilled. Radical Acceptance offers a path to freedom, including the day-to-day practical guidance developed over Dr. Brach’s twenty years of work with therapy clients and Buddhist students.
Writing with great warmth and clarity, Tara Brach brings her teachings alive through personal stories and case histories, fresh interpretations of Buddhist tales, and guided meditations. Step by step, she leads us to trust our innate goodness, showing how we can develop the balance of clear-sightedness and compassion that is the essence of Radical Acceptance. Radical Acceptance does not mean self-indulgence or passivity. Instead it empowers genuine change: healing fear and shame and helping to build loving, authentic relationships. When we stop being at war with ourselves, we are free to live fully every precious moment of our lives.
Maybe it's Buddhism lite, but I found that this book really encouraged me to meditate. OK, so it's mostly when I'm riding the T - but the idea is using meditation to examine emotion in a way I didn't know about, to loosen the grip of tortuous thoughts and feelings. I even found myself checking out meditation retreats, but I won't be rushing into that stuff right away... Instead I ended up buying the audio version which is somewhat different than the print version, but so far, so good. Her voice is very soothing. Of course I've racked up a list of other books on Buddhism to add to the big to read list. (March 04, 2006)
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"Believing that something is wrong with us is a deep and tenacious suffering," says Tara Brach at the start of this illuminating book. This suffering emerges in crippling self-judgments and conflicts in our relationships, in addictions and perfectionism, in loneliness and overwork; all the forces that keep our lives constricted and unfulfilled. "Radical Acceptance" offers a path to freedom, including the day-to-day practical guidance developed over Dr. Brach's twenty years of work with therapy clients and Buddhist students.Writing with great warmth and clarity, Tara Brach brings her teachings alive through personal stories and case histories, fresh interpretations of Buddhist tales, and guided meditations. Step by step, she leads us to trust our innate goodness, showing how we can develop the balance of clear-sightedness and compassion that is the essence of "Radical Acceptance". "Radical Acceptance" does not mean self-indulgence or passivity. Instead it empowers genuine change: healing fear and shame and helping to build loving, authentic relationships. When we stop being at war with ourselves, we are free to live fully every precious moment of our lives.
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Classificació Decimal de Dewey (DDC)294.3444Religions Other Religions Religions of Indic origin Buddhism Buddhism - practice Religious experience, life, practice Religious life and practice
LCC (Clas. Bibl. Congrés EUA)
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