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Lions Roar : March 2012
SHAMBHALA SUN MARCH 2012 83 BY ANDREA MILLER Books in Brief THE BUDDHA WALKS INTO A BAR A Guide to Life for a New Generation By Lodro Rinzler Shambhala Publications 2012; 208 pp., $14.95 (paper) Lodro Rinzler used to have an alarm clock shaped like a sword- wielding samurai and every morning it would wake him up with the recorded sound of a warrior yelling in Japanese, “Wake up! Wake up! It is time for the battle!” For many of us, life is a battle, but, according to Rinzler, it doesn’t have to be; Buddhist medi- tation—though not a quick-fix solution—can be a tremendous tool for transforming heart and mind. The Buddha Walks Into a Bar is an introduction to Buddhism and, as twenty-eight-year- old Rinzler’s first book, it’s geared toward the under-thirty set. “It is not our family, our job, or our sex life that gets us into trouble,” says Rinzler. “What gets us into trouble are the layers of concept and attachment that we place on these things. We should raise our gaze and turn our attention out to the world that surrounds us. From there whatever we see, hear, smell, taste, and touch can be considered sacred.” PATIENCE The Art of Peaceful Living By Allan Lokos Tarcher 2012; 240 pp., $14.95 (paper) Hunger, fatigue, technological failure, feeling like we’re being ignored, rushed, or disrespected—these are just some of the situ- ations and factors that can needle us into impatience. No wonder, says Allan Lokos, so many of us respond to the very word patience with a sense of deficiency. We say, “I don’t have enough patience” or “I need more,” slotting it in the rarefied domain occupied by time and money. That said, Lokos continues, “The wonderful thing about patience, unlike time, is the more we use it, the more we have.” His new release takes an in-depth look at the unhappi- ness caused by impatience and its close cousin anger, and it maps out practices for increasing our equanimity. Throughout the book are profiles of real people who are working with patience, as well as relevant, thought-provoking quotes. Allan Lokos, a longtime Buddhist practitioner and teacher, is the founder of the Community Meditation Center in New York City and the author of Pocket Peace: Effective Practices for Enlightened Living. LEAVES FALLING GENTLY Living Fully With Serious & Life-Limiting Illness Through Mindfulness, Compassion & Connectedness By Susan Bauer-Wu New Harbinger 2011; 160 pp., $16.95 (paper) Maggie, as described in Leaves Falling Gently, had been living with HIV for many years and still felt relatively healthy when she was diagnosed with AIDS. But this diagnosis left her repeat- edly sobbing and shaking and it haunted her with images of being completely debilitated. For people with life-limiting ill- ness, Maggie’s experience of being bombarded with unhelp- ful thoughts is not uncommon. In Leaves Falling Gently, Susan Bauer-Wu demonstrates how mindfulness, compassion, and connectedness are never out of reach. Uniquely qualified to write this manual for living with dying, Bauer-Wu is a neuroscientist who has researched the benefits of mindfulness for patients going through the stem cell transplant process; she has worked as a palliative care nurse; and has personally walked the path of loss with close friends and family. LIKE A YETI CATCHING MARMOTS A Little Treasury of Tibetan Proverbs By Pema Tsewang Shastri Wisdom Publications 2012; 176 pp., $15.95 (paper) A compendium of Tibetan proverbs, Like a Yeti Catching Mar- mots takes its title from one of the Tibetan proverbs in this collec- tion of 108 traditional tales. According to Tibetan mythology, the yeti is a feeble-minded beast that feeds only on marmots. When a yeti sees a marmot, it grabs it and then sits on it, saving it to eat later. But as soon as the yeti sees another marmot, it goes chasing after that one—unwittingly allowing the first marmot to escape. Some of the proverbs in this book stand on their own, requiring no explanation. For the others, Pema Tsewang Shastri provides a short comment or offers an English expression with a similar meaning. For instance, “like a yeti catching marmots” means “a