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Lions Roar : March 2007
SHAMBHALA SUN MARCH 2007 104 Gnoedrup Chen to a master who will use the corpse to relieve the suffering of all beings. Dondrup is warned not to speak a word to the corpse, but the boy forgets his vow and the corpse escapes. Over and over again Dondrup has to retrieve the corpse and each time that he forgets his vow, another tale is told. As sec- ular literature, Tales of the Golden Corpse aims to amuse children rather than instruct them. At the same time, the tales presume that the listener has an understanding of Buddhist concepts like karma, rebirth, and the bardo. TEACHING YOGA: Exploring the Teacher–Student Relationship By Donna Farhi Rodmell Press, 2006; 177 pp.; $16.95 (paper) This book exploring the practical difficulties and ethical challenges that come with teaching yoga suggests that the yoga community has reached a level of self-reflection that other contemplative tradi- tions might emulate. But that’s not to say that it’s all love and light in the yoga world. Donna Farhi wrote Teaching Yoga to help guide future yoga teachers away from some of the unprofessional prac- tices she has witnessed in her thirty-year career. Farhi looks first at the nature of the teacher–student relationship before turning to discussion of the ethics of teaching yoga—everything from ad- vertising to monetary issues. Finally, in a workbook section, Farhi sketches real-life scenarios where the teacher is challenged to think about what he or she would do before, during, and after a chal- lenge (e.g., How do you respond when a student whom you find The best-selling author and beloved American Buddhist nun Pema Chödrön offers an unabridged reading of It’s Up to You— the revolutionary book written by her spiritual teacher, Dzigar Kongtrül. Shambhala Publications, Inc. Visit www.shambhala.com to hear an excerpt and receive a 20% discount ! Dzigar Kongtrül $24.95 l 3 CDs l 4 hours l Unabridged The Practice of Self-Reflection on the Buddhist Path It’s Up to You Read by Pema Chödrön Catskill Mountains | Phoenicia, Ne w Yo r k | 845.688 .6897 www.tibethouse.org & www.menla.org MENLA M OUNTAIN RETREAT & CONFERENCE CENTER - 2007 RETREATS Ven. Thubten Chodron Cultivating a Compassionate Heart: The Yoga Method of Chenrezig * April 20-22 Sharon Salzberg & Robert Thurman Qualities of an Awakened Life: The Six Paramitas * May 11-13 Mark Epstein & Robert Thurman Discovery of Mother Voidness: Integrating Buddhism and Psychotherapy * June 15-17 Eddie Stern, John Campbell, & Robert Thurman Hare Buddha Dharma * August 23-27 Collen Saidman, Jill Pettijohn and Friends Embody the Spirit of Woman * September 19-23 Sharon Salzberg & Robert Thurman Working with Your Enemies: Finding Freedom from Hostility and Fear * October 5-8 Please visit www.menla.org for more information about these programs or call 845-688-6897 to register. We also welcome group events. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org. attractive sends you an email asking if you would like to go out for dinner?). This book bears sober attention from anyone who would hang out their shingle as a spiritual teacher. “We [can’t] assume that behavior within a spiritual context falls outside typical societal norms,” says Farhi, “and offensive behavior is less so because it carries a spiritual stamp.” THE EXPERIENCE OF MEDITATION Experts Introduce the Major Traditions Edited by Jonathan Shear Paragon House, 2006; 286 pp.; $19.95 (paper) I’m not aware of any other book that gives an overview of the major meditative traditions (Buddhism, TM, qigong/tai chi, yoga, Sufism, and Christianity) in a way that invites comparison, and for this The Experience of Meditation is valuable. Editor Jonathan Shear has assembled a team of meditation experts, and there are some names you’ll recognize here—Harada Roshi, Georg Feuer- stein, and Robert Thurman, among them—to present the basic procedures, experiential outcomes, and theoretical perspectives of ten meditation traditions. Shear, an associate professor in Virginia Commonwealth University’s philosophy department, makes the case that modern research methods are beginning to measure some of the claims made by meditation systems “inde- pendent of any metaphysical beliefs.” This book, too, attempts to be objective and complete in giving each tradition its say and let- ting the reader test its claims and efficacy. ♦