From the Publisher
"An inspiring and beautiful book about one of our most beloved elders, a modern Buddhist saint." —Jack Kornfield, author, A Path with Heart
"Reading these reflections of Dipa Ma rouses the faith that being in her presence always did." —Sylvia Boorstein, author, It's Easier Than You Think
"This is a real treasure. Dipa Ma comes through as such a gentle, disarming, fierce, sweet presence. She is completely irresistible." —Toinette Lippe, author, Nothing Left Over
Schmidt, a resident teacher at Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Mass., offers a study of the life and teachings of Nani Bala Barua-the Indian saint more commonly known by her affectionate nickname, Dipa Ma (1911-1989). Schmidt begins by offering a swift but engaging outline of Dipa Ma's life, including her marriage at age 12, her struggle as a single mother to practice meditation, her mastery of such "supernatural powers" as mind reading and time travel and her eventual establishment in a tiny Calcutta apartment as a gentle, playful and world-renowned teacher of mindfulness-indeed, Dipa Ma deeply influenced such American Buddhist heavyweights as Sharon Salzberg and Jack Kornfield, who provide the foreword and afterword, respectively. Schmidt then highlights a number of Dipa Ma's teachings, such as "the mind is all stories"; "you can do anything you want to do"; and despite strongly patriarchal economic and religious systems, "you should not think that women are helpless." Schmidt rounds out the book by exploring Dipa Ma's continuing legacy, including how many of her students continue to experience her presence even after her death. This is not a penetrating biography; in fact, later chapters are composed chiefly of brief but fond anecdotes shared by Dipa Ma's students. Nevertheless, it is a compelling tribute to a beloved teacher whose "combination of gentleness, no pretense, and power" continues to inspire many interested in the Buddhist path. (May) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.