Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion

Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion

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by Pema Chodron
     
 

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This
book offers short, stand-alone readings designed to help us cultivate
compassion and awareness amid the challenges of daily living. More than a
collection of thoughts for the day,
Comfortable
with Uncertainty

offers a progressive program of spiritual study, leading the reader through
essential concepts, themes, and practices on

See more details below

Overview

This
book offers short, stand-alone readings designed to help us cultivate
compassion and awareness amid the challenges of daily living. More than a
collection of thoughts for the day,
Comfortable
with Uncertainty

offers a progressive program of spiritual study, leading the reader through
essential concepts, themes, and practices on the Buddhist path.

Comfortable
with Uncertainty
does
not assume prior knowledge of Buddhist thought or practice, making it a perfect
introduction to Chödrön's teaching. It features the most essential
and stirring passages from Chödrön's previous books, exploring topics
such as lovingkindness, meditation, mindfulness, "nowness," letting
go, and working with fear and other painful emotions. Through the course of
this book, readers will learn practical methods for heightening awareness and
overcoming habitual patterns that block compassion.


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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Gently, conversationally, and with humor, Comfortable with Uncertainty offers strategies for seeing and thinking differently. For many people the approach is nothing less than transformational.”—Boston Globe

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780834821125
Publisher:
Shambhala Publications, Inc.
Publication date:
09/14/2010
Series:
Shambhala Publications
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
68,817
File size:
1 MB

Read an Excerpt

Chapter
4: The Wisdom of No Escape

The
central question of a warrior's training is not how we avoid uncertainty and
fear but how we relate to discomfort. How do we practice with difficulty, with
our emotions, with the unpredictable encounters of an ordinary day? For those
of us with a hunger to know the truth, painful emotions are like flags going up
to say, "You're stuck!" We regard disappointment, embarrassment,
irritation, jealousy, and fear as moments that show us where we're holding
back, how we're shutting down. Such uncomfortable feelings are messages that
tell us to perk up and lean into a situation when we'd rather cave in and back
away.

When
the flag goes up, we have an opportunity: we can stay with our painful emotion
instead of spinning out. Staying is how we get the hang of gently catching
ourselves when we're about to let resentment harden into blame, righteousness,
or alienation. It's also how we keep from smoothing things over by talking
ourselves into a sense of relief or inspiration. This is easier said than done.

Ordinarily
we are swept away by habitual momentum. We don't interrupt our patterns even
slightly. With practice, however, we learn to stay with a broken heart, with a
nameless fear, with the desire for revenge. Sticking with uncertainty is how we
learn to relax in the midst of chaos, how we learn to be cool when the ground
beneath us suddenly disappears. We can bring ourselves back to the spiritual
path countless times every day simply by exercising our willingness to rest in
the uncertainty of the present moment—over and over again.



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