At Home In The Muddy Water: The Zen Of Living With Everyday Chaos

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May we exist like a lotus, at home in the muddy water. Thus we bow to life as it is. This verse, often recited in Zen retreats, is an important reminder, says Ezra Bayda, of what the spiritual life is really about: the willingness to open ourselves to whatever life presents—no matter how messy or complicated. Through that willingness we discover wisdom, compassion, and the genuine life we all want. Bayda applies this simple Zen teaching to a range of concerns from everyday life—including relationships, trust, ...

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2003 Hard cover New in new dust jacket. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 160 p. Audience: General/trade.

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Overview

May we exist like a lotus, at home in the muddy water. Thus we bow to life as it is. This verse, often recited in Zen retreats, is an important reminder, says Ezra Bayda, of what the spiritual life is really about: the willingness to open ourselves to whatever life presents—no matter how messy or complicated. Through that willingness we discover wisdom, compassion, and the genuine life we all want. Bayda applies this simple Zen teaching to a range of concerns from everyday life—including relationships, trust, sexuality, and money—showing that we have all the material we need for practice right here before us, and that peace and fulfillment is available to everyone, right here, right now, no matter what the circumstances.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570629471
  • Publisher: Shambhala Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/10/2003
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 5.65 (w) x 8.72 (h) x 0.64 (d)

Meet the Author

Ezra Bayda teaches at the Zen Center San Diego. He is the author of several books, including, Being Zen and At Home in the Muddy Water. For more information visit www.zencentersandiego.org.

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2004

    A great tool for everyone

    As with my dad¿s first book, BEING ZEN, I could read AT HOME IN THE MUDDY WATER countless times and always find it useful. There always seems to be something or someone in life that I want to change. I see repetitive patterns in the way I relate to others and to life. I watch myself react and put up defenses and strategies of control. I think I am clear, with a good analysis of the situation, of myself, and of others. And yet, the same patterns return. The same difficulties and questions come again and again, varying only in the circumstances under which they arise, but not in the base emotions and beliefs themselves. AT HOME IN THE MUDDY WATER helps me to see and experience my difficulties on a deeper level, getting to the very base, the very core of my hurt, my fear, my anger and my pain. This book, like BEING ZEN, helps me to deal with life daily, whether it be with reacting to something as small as being cut off on the freeway to something larger, like depression, self-doubt, and difficulties with relationships. Many times, I must admit, the equanimity my dad speaks of in his books feels out of reach. But I know it is possible to achieve because I have watched him in spiritual practice for over 27 years. My dad still feels pain; he still gets hurt, angry, disappointed and filled with fear. But he relates to all of these things differently than most. His spiritual practice, as so clearly laid out in these books, allows him to experience life in all of its colors and shapes, in happiness or in grief, in peace or in total chaos. The practice is always the same: simply to BE HERE. The tools are out there, but it is up to each of us to put them to use for ourselves. AT HOME IN THE MUDDY WATER is such a tool.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2003

    The Real Deal

    No dogma here. No ritual. No BS. Just the down-and-dirty, utterly practical truth about what we really are--seeing it and dealing with it. Isn't it a relief really to recognize yourself, your habits, your deep possibilities, in a book like this? Makes a fellow want to prop up the hood and get to work. Like, maybe the darn thing is workable after all.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2003

    Clarifying the Waters

    At Home in the Muddy Water is a very accessible primer on how to clarify and work with the nitty-gritty difficulties that all of us face in our everyday living. The middle section of the book is particularly powerful, in which issues like relationships, trust and sexuality are addressed with both keen psychological insight and the broader perspective of a spiritual framework. The writing style is simple. It is also very heartfelt and encouraging, but without the use of the standard spiritual platitudes. Rather, there are very specific and useful suggestions on how to deal with the confusions and problems of daily life. I also loved the stories the author used; it¿s nice to bring a sense of humor to an otherwise serious topic.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2003

    being at home in the mud - what a relief

    MUDDY WATER REVIEW Sometimes it seems there¿s an assumption that spiritual practitioners are either (1) beyond having to deal with issues like trust, relationships, money, sex, or (2) that such things will just clear up with enough meditation or enlightenment experiences. Neither has been the case for me. AT HOME IN THE MUDDY WATER provides the missing piece. Ezra Bayda recognizes that if something is going to become clear, it has to be dealt with directly. Just like learning to ride a bike, you have to get on one; no amount of abstract meditation will teach you how to ride. The material is practical, heartfelt and inspiring. Although there¿s no such thing as wasted time, I wish I¿d found it 20 years ago. The specific insights and practical pointers go to the heart of what needs to be experienced, from the murkiest corners to the vastness of it all. And Bayda makes it clear that what we¿re searching for is always available right where we stand, right in the midst of the muddy water of life. What a relief.

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